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Startups Anonymous: The most expensive lesson I learned was to start a startup in Europe

Originally posted on PandoDaily:
[This is a weekly series that brings you raw, first-hand experiences from founders and investors in the trenches. Their story submissions are anonymous, allowing them to share openly without fear of retribution. Every Wednesday, we'll run one new story chosen by Dana Severson, who operates StartupsAnonymous, a place for startups to share, ask…

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Culture Eats Strategy For Breakfast

Originally posted on TechCrunch:
Editor’s note: Bill Aulet is the managing director of the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship and a senior lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He is the author of the recently released book, Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a Successful Startup.  I used to think corporate culture didn’t matter. Discussion of vision, mission…

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kevin oleary

Why I Hate Dragon’s Den

A local journal today glowingly reported that not one, but two local companies had won investment on the Dragon’s Den Canadian “reality” television show. What struck me about the two, apparently best “winning ideas” from our community, was how utterly mundane they were: an “empty beer bottle handling system” and “illuminated party clothing.” As an entrepreneur myself, I first need to give respect to the two entrepreneurs who achieved this success with the likes of Kevin O’Leary and the other investors. It is no mean feat and they should be acknowledged and congratulated for it. On the other hand, these are not the kind of ideas that are going to make a major dent in the local or Canadian economy. Meanwhile in Vancouver, two startups, D-Wave and General Fusion are working on Big Ideas that could change our lives.

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hobie alter

R.I.P. Hobie Alter: The Henry Ford of Southern California Surf Culture

Hobie Alter died yesterday after a five year fight with cancer. He was 80 years old.  My teenage years were spent driving up and down the Pacific Coast Highway in Orange County on regular surfing safari’s, with my crew.  Dana Point, before there was a breakwater and a huge marina, and adjoining Doheny State Beach […]

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The Digital Utopian Vision of Marshall McLuhan and Stewart Brand Is Cracking

It appears to me that the original vision and promise of the Internet, referred to by many as Digital Utopianism, is at severe risk of deteriorating into a “balkanized” World Wide Web.

National and political Internet barriers, censorship and ubiquitous surveillance seem to be the emerging new reality. Notable digital luminaries the likes of Vin Cerf and Bill Gates have been questioned on this point, and both have expressed no major concern about deterioration of the freedom of the Internet or with the original Utopian vision. The argument is that the World Wide Web cannot be effectively blocked or censored. As a long time Silicon Valley high tech executive, I understand this optimistic view, but the facts on the ground are now providing serious evidence that the Internet is under attack, and may not survive unless there is a significant shift in these new trends.

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general fusion

A new push for fusion power here in Burnaby: General Fusion’s Michel Laberge at TED2014

Originally posted on TED Blog:
Michel Laberge. Photo: James Duncan Davidson “The whole planet needs a lot of energy,” begins Michel Laberge, in an understatement. So far, he says, we’ve been running on fossil fuels, and it’s been difficult to find something as cost-effective to replace them. Laberge is a fan of nuclear power, which…

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Netflix thinks its peering deal with Comcast should be a net neutrality issue before the FCC. So do I!

Originally posted on Gigaom:
Netflix has come out in favor of some sort of government intervention when it comes to ISPs that charge content providers for capacity at the edge of their networks, claiming Thursday that it should be a network neutrality issue. The internet video provider recently paid Comcast for direct access to the…

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Quantum tech is more than just crazy science: It’s good business from mobile payments to fighting the NSA,

Originally posted on PandoDaily:
For years, quantum physics, and its computational component quantum computing, were the stuff scientists’ dreams were made of. Quantum mechanics, the study of all the spooky indefinite properties of subatomic particles, is more than theoretical of course; Scientists can observe and measure these properties. But the real-world applications for this research…

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“Culture of arrogance” felled Nortel, anti-climactic Ottawa U study concludes. Was RIM any different?

This is another on my series on industry analysis. The recent University of Ottawa study on the demise of Nortel Networks, tells us what many of us already knew. The most important constructive criticism of this study is that it should have been done years ago. The Nortel collapse was followed by a surprisingly similar scenario at RIM, now Blackberry. Mike Lazaridis, who served as RIM’s co-CEO along with Jim Balsillie until January, 2012, are generally considered to have failed to respond adequately to the market encroachments of Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android phones, as Blackberry’s market share plummeted. I recently showed my undergrad and graduate strategy students a video of a Charlie Rose interview with John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems. Chambers emphasized the acceleration of the Adizes corporate life cycle, in many cases to less than ten years, and the need for constant reinvention to survive in this challenging and rapidly changingnew world.

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Are We Facing a Future of Invisible Workers?

At The New Yorker, George Packer considers one significant way in which this Gilded Age differs from the last one. Amazon, Apple and Google are not Standard Oil, Ford or General Motors, but there are parallels. We are facing monumental economic and social issues that we need to be prepared to address.

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