When Facebook bought Instagram a flood of thoughts came into my head, but ultimately, I could not shake off this image, which I promptly had designed for this post.
I gave my reaction to the acquisition (for what it’s worth) on Cambridgeshire’s BBC Breakfast Show (Non tech audience). It’s nothing that hasn’t already been said, but here it is anyway. Well done to Kevin and the Instagram guys, but even with the exit, I’d be thinking ‘What if we just kept going’…. Unfortunately for Instagram, even if they wanted to, I don’t think that option was available to them.
$400 million isn’t such a bad deal. Lets hope Kevin is a responsible steward of such wealth.
Music is and was a huge part of my life, but I have never blogged about it on here.
Anyway, I wrote this song 10 years ago with help from two of my best friends Ted and Will Fisk. I’ve known Will from the age of 7 and Ted from the age of 3 We were also in a band called Gravel with another good friend, Will Savage.
Gravel were awesome considering we were between 14 and 18 years old and we hit the heights of Radio 1, NME, Melody Maker and released tracks on 3 small lables. Steve Lamacq came to see us and I had a drink with him at the Stag on Great Portland Street last year and he did remember us. John Peel R.I.P also played us on his show. What a legend John was and I will never forget the exposure he gave to up and coming bands like ours.
Without the internet gravel are almost forgotten. With respect to the people that helped and supported us throughout those 4 years, I think that Gravel should put all of our tracks on-line and perhaps even release them officially. That’s another sorry. Maybe we might even perform again. It would be awesome. I’d like to see Gravel on spotify.
Anyway, back to my original thread, the working project was called ‘Come For Me Gmork. We penned around 8 songs, recorded 3 and here’s one of them. It’s called Diagonal. I am on Vocals and Guitar, Ted on bass and Will and Drums..
Here it is:
I do miss performing….
Why? Well for social power users with large a fanboy following, google + is possibly the number 1 network, providing greatest visibility, engagement and conversation points.
Nevertheless, awesome graphic by Daryl Lang
Web summit is a special conference for me, for many reasons. When I first came to the valley in 2008 I attended some of the after parties by way of invitation via some friends at Canaan partners. who are well known for throwing the venture and entrepreneurial community of San Francisco a great event at least once a year.
But the conference itself is possibly the most challenging, high value, interesting and thought provoking conversation around the web. Attracting everyone from Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Balmer and Sergey Brin to Reid Hoffman, Ariel Emmanuel, Sean Parker and many many others, one is naturally guaranteed a challenging and interesting few days.
Web summit is not focused upon new companies launching but more towards trends and essentially where the web is heading. It’s not necessarily the best place to seek funding or stumble across the a hot new service. Leave that to Techcrunch disrupt et al…
What I do like is the message of positive change that echoes out of web summit, something that the returning community of great minds agree upon, across the board. I have made some unlikely new friends one of which is Stanley Burrell who I see every year, except this year we talked at length about his new project and partnership potential.
Stanley, more commonly known as MC Hammer, was live on stage at Web summit to announce Wiredoo – a new related ‘deep search’ engine that can return related queries to any keyword search. It’s an interesting concept that is described by the man himself as ‘search once and see what’s related’and although I can’t say much more it appears to have a some potential with Google’s Sergey Brin listening on backstage…
I want to wish Hammer the best of luck with his new venture. It has been baking for two years now, as Zkatter has been for me so I fully understand the challenges of trying to bring an ambitious idea to market.
You can’t search this!
Check out the launch party video from my latest investment Uni-verse featuring myself with our the two founders Jon Nice and Sammy Verghese along with Rich Westbrook from e-Man, Kano, Arg and Bluey Robinson. Presented, produced and directed by the brilliant Newspepper, take a look:
It was both a great honor and a privilege to be able pay tribute to the impact that Steve Jobs has had on the world of technology. Who am I to be in this position?
Thank you BBC Breakfast Show for giving me the opportunity to speak from the heart about an amazing man. I do not claim to be an expert on Apple and I have never met Steve Jobs. What I am is a huge fan and somebody who has been truly inspired by his genius…
Thank you Steve.
Born out of wedlock, put up for adoption, then dropped out of college because he didn’t want his parents to pay the fee’s. And?
Get over yourself and know that YOU are your biggest obstacle. My inevitable death reminds me to stay alive and open to change and as Steve himself most rightly, said:
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life … Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”
My most recent investment, uni-verse launched successfully, at 1am on Monday 3rd October during our launch party for 2500 students at Oceana nightclub featuring Kano, Bluey Robinson, James ‘Arg’ Sargent and Ministry of Sound DJ, Darren James. I was approached by two talented young entrepreneurs, Jon Nice and Sammy Verghese to invest and help build the product and inevitably complete the founding team jigsaw. From a distance, I oversee the product strategy and technology leaving our full-time team of four to run things on the ground.
With uni-verse, the desire to build a localized social events and discounts platform is at the forefront of our minds.
The service is deeply integrated into Facebook’s open graph and we will continue to strengthen this relationship, as Facebook continue to standardize the interactions between themselves and 3rd party sites. It is very exciting to be working on something like this but I am under no illusions that the team will need to be smart and create innovation if we are going to retain and engage this marketplace. We will need to approach things from an entirely different angle. Of course Brighton is just the beginning, but we cannot run before we can walk and proving the business model and making our mistakes in this city is the goal before we scale out.
Unlike national offers and discount sites Uni-verse aims to focus on localized group buy in’s and we hope that Uni-verse will generate many new relationships for students in Brighton as they begin to interact with like minded people around them as we bring the conversation out of Facebook and into this vertical. Uni-verse wants to tell you about what’s happening on the ground so expect the company to focus on location, real-time and game-play as a method of bringing engagement to our target market.
What you see today is just the beginning, a basic glimpse into where we can take this.
So, connect to Facebook and have a look around: www.uni-verse.biz