While the Writers Guild of America is on strike, Hollywood is giving us plenty of opportunities to catch up on content that we haven't seen. Fancast features full episodes of TV shows, TV listings, and news on TV, movies, and celebrities. Comcast's Fancast may look like the latest entrant into the web video scene, but the truth is that it packs a much bigger punch.
The news is that SugarCRM is $14.5 million of the way toward a $20 million Series D round of funding. But the real question is, "Why?"
Sugar is reportedly running cashflow positive on a solid revenue trajectory. While I don't have inside information and wouldn't comment on most of the company's operations, I can say that SugarCRM is doing very well and increasingly seeing major customers walk in the door.… Read more
Marten Mickos sent me an update on MySQL's exceptional 2007. It makes interesting points about open source, generally, while relaying important information about MySQL. Here are excerpts from the message, with his permission:
In 2007 we continued to make free and open source software available and affordable to all. MySQL version 5 was our top download hit, expanding the universe of MySQL users further into the Web2.0 and Enterprise2.0 markets. MySQL Proxy, experimentally released in 2007, garnered the attention of scale-out experts worldwide.
Our commercial offering MySQL Enterprise was significantly upgraded with improved monitoring and other services, and we launched MySQL Cluster Carrier-Grade Edition for the most demanding telecom uses. To expand our global reach, we opened a strong APAC office in Tokyo in early 2007.
What did we learn in 2007?… Read more
To the person with a hammer, everything looks like a nail. To the ex-Googler, does everything look like advertising? That's the question I asked myself while reading this New York Times' article on ex-Googlers who want to parlay their wealth into venture capital."Google arguably is at the center of the online advertising ecosystem," said Roger Lee, a general partner at Battery Ventures...."If you understand how Google works and how associated business models work, it gives you a great lens to understand other advertising companies."
Maybe. But who cares? That is, unless you're investing in advertising companies (of which there aren't actually that many, and certainly not many in Silicon Valley or Boston, where Battery largely operates). We've already seen a multitude of Google wannabes trying to monetize the web through advertising, and it turns out that advertising is a very blunt tool to apply to the various types of web businesses.… Read more
2007 was such a massive year for open source that I've had to divide it up into two posts. 2006 was relatively easy to encapsulate in one post. Not so 2007. Enterprise adoption of open source was in full bloom. The analysts were all over open source in 2007. And then there was Microsoft....
I covered January through June in my last post. This one covers July through December. It's surprising just how much happened this past year:
JulyOpen-source investments were up 33% over Q2 2006. Interestingly, open-source startup opportunities branched out beyond CRM, ERP, and other mainstream enterprise software to things like advertising, telephony, and other disparate things. Windows development declined by 12% while developers targeting the Linux platform(s) was up 34.8%. Microsoft is hardly going away anytime soon, but third-party developers...maybe so. Of course, later numbers showed Linux server growth slowing compared to Windows, while both grow their data center market shares. Lies, damned lies, and statistics...but whose?… Read more
Every time I think open source can't make inroads any faster, it does. Every time I suspect that we've hit a plateau, we haven't. Every time I think I can't be any more surprised by the proprietary world's response to open source, I am.
Such was 2007, a year when open source became more than a marketing buzzword/phrase. Starting in January (and ending, oddly enough, in December :-), here are the top stories that caught my eye in the first half of 2007. I think you, like I, will be shocked by just how much happened in 2007.
JanuaryRumors start to swirl that Novell is in the market to acquire Xen or Altiris. The company didn't acquire either of them, but both were later acquired.... Rob Bearden leaves Red Hat/JBoss to become COO of OpenSpan in a worrying trend for 2007 that saw a steady exodus of key JBoss employees from Red Hat.… Read more
To promote the release of their new album, In Rainbows, Radiohead is debuting a pre-recorded hour long set on Current TV. According to Billboard, the program will feature Radiohead performing the new album in its entirety.
Radiohead is embracing the internet more than any other band out there today, from their much publicized "pay what you want" internet release of In Rainbows back in October to this news today. This New Year's Eve concert just solidifies their web presence. Radiohead is leading the way right now and I expect to see other bands start to follow suit … Read more
The Economist makes three technology predictions for 2008, two of which concern web surfing and the third of which concerns everyone, whether they surf the web or not. The Economist's third prediction is that the technology world will open up:
The embrace of "openness" by firms that have grown fat on closed, proprietary technology is something we'll see more of in 2008....
Pundits agree: neither Microsoft nor Apple can compete at the new price points being plumbed by companies looking to cut costs. With open-source software maturing fast, Linux, OpenOffice, Firefox, MySQL, Evolution, Pidgin and some 23,000 other Linux applications available for free seem more than ready to fill that gap. By some reckonings, Linux fans will soon outnumber Macintosh addicts. Linus Torvalds should be rightly proud.
What's most interesting about its analysis, however, is where it sees the biggest impact for open source (Linux) and why (Ubuntu):… Read more
First it was Oracle buying Innobase (though Oracle has so far played fair). Now it's IBM buying Solid Information Technology. Given much of the proprietary world's public attitude toward open source ("Open source a threat? What's open source?), it's surprising that IBM would even bother to hedge its bets against MySQL.
After all, who's afraid of little MySQL? I mean, who besides everyone with a database business that depends on lock-in, overpriced licenses, and 20th Century software? Matthew Aslett doesn't think this was targeted at MySQL, and he's likely right. But it impacts MySQL all the same, as the New York Times writes:
The IBM acquisition may be seen as a setback for MySQL, since it marks the loss of independence of another company that makes a high-performance transaction engine for MySQL's database....… Read more
I spent some time on the phone Wednesday with Mike Herrick of the Collaborative Software Initiative. I knew Mike back when he was at Liberty Mutual, building out its open-source team. When Mike left to join CSI, I wondered what would cause someone with a great job in a Fortune 100 enterprise to join a start-up.
Today, things became a bit clearer.
Remember Avalanche? It was an open-source co-op formed by several major enterprises (Best Buy, Wells Fargo, etc.) to share code in areas of common need (call centers, for example) but little to no competitive overlap. The idea was to share code and thereby improve innovation while lowering costs.
CSI is similar in its aims, but I think it's a better approach to the problem because it should do a better job of coordinating collaboration. CSI's mission is to:build communities of like-minded IT leaders to reduce software development costs, accelerate compliance and consolidate project timelines.
CSI does this by helping to bring different companies to collaborate on IT projects that each individually needs, but that can be done more cost effectively as a collective. So, for example, perhaps CSI found that Credit Suisse needed to develop a trading platform. As it turns out, this is a common need for Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and other financial services companies. So, CSI would then approach these other companies to gauge interest and then to coordinate the development.… Read more