Entrepreneur, Explorer, Angel.

Sometimes all at Once.

19TH September 2014

Cellufun - Family and Friends - Leadership - Mobile - Timeless - Timely - Uncategorized

Death of the CTO

A friend, partner, and multi-time CTO died last week. It was sad as it was surreal and I’m afraid it hasn’t fully hit me yet. He was one of the first to encourage my ability to lead entrepreneurs and adventurers, describing it as an innate ability to fraternize with all the different types on a team, but to be the one to declare “Let’s take that hill”. Someone has to do that, before anyone moves. He told me I was one of those people. It stuck. As much as I can say at this point is that his passing reminded me about a few things to remember as an entrepreneur: and succession plans, de-stress, and balance. Succession My friend had a tremendous business partner who knew every aspect of the […]

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01TH March 2013

A Line In the Sand - Angel investing - Business Tricks - Cellufun - Creative problem Solving - Entrepreneur - Geopolitical - Good Story - Leadership - Mojiva - Operative - Timeless - Timely - Trust Cloud - Uncategorized - Vision

On my Kindle: a few great books for entrepreneurs

My son stole my Kindle the other day and ordered a bunch of books because the button looked good. Not much more to add to that story, aside from he’s a digital maniac and I still like to read. So, I went back and looked at what I have read in the past decade and what stuck. As many of you know, I’m still not quite done with my college degree… but I’m still an enthusiastic learner and read a book or two a month. That’s a must-do for any leader who is looking to keep his mind fresh and his thoughts topical. But there are also some books that I constantly refer to, reread, and recommend. Some of them are great learning on outright effectiveness, others highlight specific processes, a few deal with […]

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16TH December 2011

Cellufun - culture - Mobile - Mojiva - Timely - Trust Cloud - Uncategorized

Ma’am, step out of the car and put down that… um.. Tele-Puter.

  The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) came out with a shocker this week; urging a Cellphone Ban for Drivers. I support the NTSB’s cellphone ban for the following reason: anyone still using that word probably still calls a “car” a “horseless carriage”. Beside the story in the New York times, there was a stock photo of a freaking Razor flip phone. It made me laugh. As per usual, a Government Agency trying to protect its public actually just misses the point, in this case by a couple of generations. Here’s why The moniker “Cellphone” was actually based on analog cellular technology, where signals were splits into cells when a tower was overloaded or a signal was passed from one tower to another. With Voice requests. So last century. But […]

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06TH December 2011

Angel investing - Cellufun - Creative problem Solving - Good Story - Mobile - Mojiva - Operative - Timely - Trust Cloud - Uncategorized - Venture Capital - Vision

A sneak peak at how luck comes about, and shapes the world (of me).

I work hard to get lucky.  I think most successful entrepreneurs do. But when luck comes, you rarely get to see what ELSE happened to make you lucky. It’s usually just some little thing clear on the other side of the world that started some sequence of events that ended with you on a good day. My friends who won the lottery last week would probably agree. You do a shrug of the shoulders and a high five before you move on, because there is just no explaining. For me,  I have long known- and given total credit– to the fact the iPhone changed my angel career. But I never knew the back story of why it was launched in the first place. Walter Isaacson’s Jobs book had a fascinating chapter on just how it came […]

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15TH July 2011

Cellufun - Entrepreneur - Mojiva - Timeless - Timely - Trust Cloud - Uncategorized - Vision

Brave new world: Mobile’s tectonic affect

News of Mojiva closing a $25M round just a few years after starting up brought a rush of high five from peers, rounds of drinks from friends, and more than a few calls from unknowns trying to sell me things I never knew I needed. The ride so far has been amazing, and not a day goes by that I am not grateful for the courage of my co-founders Krish and Dan, the expertise of our CEO Dave, and the dedication of rest of the team. And with all the skill in the room, I am still also respectful of how much luck and timing have to do with the entire equation. When she heard of the news, one of my Board members from KFAC had a pretty simple question: what does […]

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25TH May 2011

Angel investing - Business Tricks - Cellufun - Entrepreneur - Leadership - Mojiva - Operative - Timely - Uncategorized - Venture Capital

Old people suck at Start ups… ’cause kids don’t know about risk!

That ouchie brought to you by Michael Arrington at a recent Tech Crunch Disrupt Conference. It’s not as bad as it seems. I find myself initially defensive at this comment, made by the headline grabbing (headline making!) founder of TechCrunch. I fall on the other side of thirty. If you check out this graph, which represents 300 responses from startups financed by Ron Conway, repeat founders under the age of 30 get more $500M+ exits. So if this is true, are old(er) founders more cautious, prudent, and take earlier, cheaper exits for security? Possibly. Whereas a younger founder will let their company brew for a while, gaining value, or be more tolerant of the risk along the way. Older founders have also likely seen the game played before, and know how to judge incremental success, […]

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13TH May 2011

Adventure - Cellufun - Creative problem Solving - Good Story - Legends and tales - Mojiva - Operative - sport

The Big Climb: High altitude, altered judgement, and near death for entrepreneurs

I was in Deer Valley recently for a Pelion LP meeting and the topic turned to high- altitude climbing. Entrepreneurs that I work with know that I constantly use the experience as an analogly for building companies. (I have analogies for everything, some more crazy than others.  At least, that’s what I’m told). The basic premise is that, as you get to higher  altitudes, your mind and body play tricks on you. Cognitive powers are altered. Moving carefully and deliberately is important, but so is having a guide to help you move quicker and avoid mis-steps. For a look into real-world mountain climbs, there’s a great book called Into Thin Air by Krakuer that covers it well. (and the rebuttal by Anatoly Bukareev is just as good). As for entrepreneurship, there are very few books […]

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06TH May 2011

Cellufun - Creative problem Solving - Geopolitical - Mojiva - Timely - Trust Cloud - Uncategorized - Vision

Nerd Alert: Tech visas mean more tech jobs!

One thing I hear month after month at the Next American Economy thinktank breakfast is, “Where are the Jobs Jobs Jobs? “Seems like a giant game of peekaboo. I have seen scary Powerpoint slides from David Autor (MIT) and Dane Stangler (Kaufman Foundation) about not only the dearth of new jobs, but the dearth of the new businesses that create most of them. (“Dearth” is a double credit word in Scrabble). I touched on this same issue in a previous post Stuck in the Middle with You. Nobel Laureate Michael Spence and Sandile Hlatshwayo note that the American economy has seen the lower and middle components of the value-added chain moving to the rapidly growing markets abroad and warn that soon, higher-paying jobs may follow low-paying jobs in leaving the United States. The actions of the […]

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30TH March 2011

Business Tricks - Cellufun - Creative problem Solving - culture - Leadership - Mobile - Mojiva - Uncategorized

Put DOWN that MOBILE phone! No don’t. Hold it, what ARE you doing? OK, NP

In so many ways, my DNA is old school. Hold the door. Say “please” and “thank you.” Be attentive to others’ needs. Listen first, speak after understanding. BUT we’re in the midst of an epic transformation in mobile communications, and something is being lost in the shuffle. Namely, mobile manners. While taking analog notes have been a part of “paying attention” for generations, the advent of thumbs-on-screens is less than five years old. An Intel study on Mobile Manners quotes Genevieve Bell, head of interaction and experience research, Intel Labs: “New digital technologies are becoming a mainstay in consumers’ lives, but we haven’t yet worked out for ourselves, our families, communities and societies what all the right kinds of behaviors and expectations will be,” Bell said. “Our appropriate digital technology […]

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