Friday, January 02, 2009

Big news! We launched Foodista, the Cooking Encyclopedia Anyone Can Edit!

Come check it out and add a recipe or two. We're running a drawing until the end of the month to win a $100 gift card to Sur La Table.

If you have your own blog, you can also create automatic links from Foodista to your blog by embedding one of our logo widgets, like this:

Hasselback Potatoes on Foodista

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Happy Fall Y'all!

Sheri and I went to a pumpkin patch yesterday and I was blown away by the variety of squash and pumpkins now available. I love the fall and especially the colors. The patch was at Webb Ranch in Portola Valley, CA, so the prices were also impressive...many of the more unique varieties priced over $25 for a "head-sized" punkin! One of the things that impressed me was the variety of people and cultures who turned out. There was a large Indian family picking out pumpkins and taking pictures of their kids sitting on pumpkins, all delighted by the event...including their elderly grandmother, who was dressed in an orange Sari that matched the hues of the field perfectly. I think Halloween is the second most "adoptable" American holiday...the first of course is Thanksgiving; everyone likes to eat! Check out my slideshow below.

Friday, June 29, 2007


People started lining up at the Apple Store in downtown Palo Alto two days ago and it's grown to a full block long with about 200 people. To me this is a fascinating cultural phenomenon. One interesting element is how small startups are seizing on this to promote their own companies. I heard two dot-commers do a biz dev deal in line where one company is giving away iPhones and asked another to be a sponsor and actually pay for one of the two phones...handshake, deal done.

My hope is that Steve Jobs won't pull a Nintendo-Wii on us and will have enough of these babies in stock to satisfy the masses.

There's plenty of hype around this launch, it's been orchestrated beautifully, and there are plenty of critics...I think the reality will come out somewhere in the middle as to how much of a watershed event this will wind up being. Ultimately, my sense is this will be remembered as the point when Mobile really emerged as a platform for consumer applications.

Here's a fun picture of me with the Mega iPhone:

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Cool New Site:

Hello all...It's been quite some time (which is my usual pattern) I'm planning on getting active again for a bit.

I'm going to start sharing thoughts on latest cool new sites/technologies.

The first is, an interesting idea that brings together slick ways to share image and audio across many different websites and mobile devices. Perhaps the ability to both consume and publish stills and video on a mobile phone is the most unique thing they do.

One of the features I like the most is the Live Chat function that lets people chat in real-time, within the TV widgets, across many different sites.

Kyte uses a TV metaphor and media shared is encapsulated in "shows" on "channels." Check out mine here:

Sunday, December 03, 2006

I recently had lunch with Jack Herrick, a business school classmate and founder of wikiHow. Without disclosing anything I think he'd want kept private, I can I say I'm amazed at how much he and his partners have accomplished in the last couple of years with very limited resources. A for profit business, based on open source software, they have rocketed to almost 15,000 articles and an Alexa ranking nearing 2,000. Here's an interesting explanation of how they think about using open source technology and community generated content to create a business:

The site allows anyone to create articles and guides on how to do anything and everything you can imagine. Using much of the same software and many of the same concepts as Wikipedia, they have added more structure to makes it easier (and more fun) to create and edit the information on wikiHow. I recently created my first article for a recipe:

wikiHow and its success is another testament to the power of community on the web. Check it out for some free advice or share your expertise!

Monday, November 20, 2006

The Holidays are upon us again and it's time to do all of our gift shopping, but where o'where!?!? One good option is a new comparison shopping engine:, which was launched recently by Krishna Motukuri, a friend and former colleague. In addition to applying a lot of good Web 2.0 design principals, perhaps uGenie's neatest innovation is leeting you shop for a basket of goods across a number of retailers. They also do a much better job helping you to understand the hidden costs and discounts that you will experience at each ecommerce site.

When I was in business school in 1995-1997, we talked a lot about "low barriers to entry" and minimal "switching costs" in the emerging world of ecommerce ("everything is just a click away!"). The thinking was that this would lead to huge numbers of small sellers competing efficiently online. In reality, the first decade of online shopping saw a relatively small number of retailers dominate the majority of sales. This is because only a handful were truly competitive with offline channels on price, selection, and service.

This is changing, as The Wall Street Journal pointed out on 11/16/06 in an article titled "Web Pioneers eBay and Amazon Face a Threat From Older Retailers." I believe that the 2006 holiday season is shaping up as one of the first years where large numbers of consumers will really want to shop around at a number of etailers. This, combined with the fact that most comparison shopping engines fall short on creating apples to apples comparisons, means that uGenie is a perfectly timed gift!

Thursday, November 16, 2006


I spent a couple of years at building a Yellow Pages application and though we came up with a number of cool features, we never realized the full potential for the space., one of the startups in the space has continued to execute very well and really wrapped a lot of social content into the experience.

I'm really impressed with the work they have done. Check out my profile here: