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Techcrunch40: Day 1 Recap and My Top Picks!
Alright, so Day 1 of Techcrunch40 is complete and I wanted to give you my thoughts and feedback on the day overall, the organization, and the startups.
Hera are some other sites with excellent coverage from the event:
- I was impressed to walk into the ballroom and see hardwired connections
- There were people standing – at least 80 some counted – this is unacceptable – with $2,500 for a ticket, I would want to sit on a pillow of clouds all day. Many in the IRC channel were bitching about it
- I don’t know if the demopit people really got the full benefit as some of their time was cut – I don’t have any feedback yet from any of the demopiters to provide – will try to get some tomorrow
- Jason tried really hard – I have to give him some credit, he did a good job – and damn he is skinny!
- The part that really irked me was the TC blog posts. There are 100 of the top bloggers and journalists covering the web tech scene at this event, why not let them have a crack at writing about what’s going on? No. TC had to be first, so just minutes before each presentation, their posts went live. Sure Duncan is live blogging but so many of the posts were pre-made. Let the other bloggers write about your conference just as you do with others. It’s almost like the conference was made just to give TC 170 exclusives :)
- This was by far the most disappointing part of the day
- It was almost like watching an infomercial with the "paid testimonials" in the middle
- If you are a supposed expert – talk about what’s good in the app and what’s bad
- Yossi tried to be funny, which was a nice break but still, it was very disappointing as these startups I am sure were looking for the feedback
- The time was also too short to really discuss the sites at any length so you had a quick "like" roundabout
- Mike joined the second set of panelists and asked the only question for the entire day that was a bit controversial
- I would suggest they really look at how they handle the panels on Tuesday – especially with da hammer – who was joked about on and off all day on IRC
- The morning discussion with Filo, Hurley and Andressen was boring and offered zero value to anyone in the audience. Learning that Andressen sold lemonade or that Hurley sold photos is not worth $2,500. They should have discussed failures within the business, how they dealt with it, how did they deal with the overnight success they came upon, etc. Instead it was a fluff piece that put me to sleep. Live Notes
- Afternoon discussion with Facebook – it’s like the valley crowd thinks this guy is god-like. He was boring, very slow voice and while I expected Mike to hit him hard, the questions were basically all normal. Live notes
Search and Discovery – Live Notes
- Powerset: Been plugged so many times on TC you would think it’s already live. Looks pretty interesting, but again no timeline was given for launch. I thought you had to be ready to launch to get to TC40?
- Cognitive Code: Could be successful if they stick to using the technology within another framework. Otherwise it seemed like the same woman’s face with some speech recognition – though it did appear smarter
- Cast.tv: It’s a video search – seems to focus on newer videos
- Faroo: p2p search – unfortunately I don’t know if this will work – the idea is great, but I don’t understand what the true benefit is for me to let Faroo suck my computer’s resources all day to process search queries
- Viewdle: Face recognition software – looked pretty intelligent, couldn’t tell if you had to use their player for the search to work
Mobile and Communications – Live Notes
- Cubic Telecom: This was one of my faves – the experts hated it but I think it has great potential. If I was marketing for CT, I would go after large corporations – have xyz public company buy hundreds of these sim cards to keep on hand for their traveling employees. And I think the sim card swap is much easier than Ryan Block made it out to be – if my mom can do it (and she can barely use aol) then anyone can.
- Yap: Looked pretty neat – a text device that lets you speak txt messages into your cell. I like the idea but what about when it auto-opens the web browser and you are driving, then what?
- TruTap: I didn’t get this one honestly – they have some access around the world in 210 countries but not in the U.S. yet.
- Ceedo: I need a longer demo to really understand this but it looked like a potentially great idea. You can load any software from your desktop onto your mobile and then you connect your mobile to any pc and you can use the software without an install. Almost like a big usb stick
- Loudtalks: The Internet walkie-talkie. Has potential if I can use the buddy lists on the other services I already have. Making another list will be a tough sell-in for most users.
Community and Collaboration – Live Notes
- Storyblender: Puts stories together from pieces you select. The experts liked it, I thought it was just average.
- TripIt: I liked this one a lot – especially because of the invoice email option. Makes it very to use and implement. I like the idea of creating triptiks (old AAA term) and sharing with the people close to me
- Flock: Why was this selected? It’s out two years, the 1.0 looked just like the .9. I don’t get it.
- MusicShake: The crowd favorite. They allow you to create awesome music mixes. I was very impressed with this product and it was my favorite of the day
- 8020 Publishing: They are making a new magazine that you can submit content to. You submit it, they monetize it and get rich. Oh but you can buy the mag and put it on your coffee table. Next.
Crowd Sourcing – Live Notes
- Cake Financial: They take all your logins, pull all your financial stock data, and you can match it up against your friends and family. What is missing is the fact that some things are personal. Ron Conway is an angel investor and the panel seemed to like it. None of them talked about security. Who would give them their logins? C’mon folks. Most people barely trust their bank or stock broker.
- DocStoc: Pretty peppy demo – it can find all of the docs across the Web. I didn’t see any links back to the originator. I need a deeper demo before I can comment on the idea.
- CrowdSpirit: They take ideas and bring them together with the market, the marketing, and then sell the product. It’s an interesting idea but there are a lot of steps and each one could present some issues.
- TeachThePeople: Integrated learning – there were some copyright issues and some content payment issues – seems like an ok idea, it didn’t wow me.
- My favorites were MusicShake and Cubic Telecom. I am pretty sure MusicShake will win the money.
- I am around all day tomorrow – will be sitting in the first row – come find me and say hi! :)