Posts from May 2004

Google's Spyware Principals

Jason Calacanis links to Google’s Software Principals.

I don’t know about Jason’s laying the blame for all these spyware apps at the foot of Microsoft, but I do agree that Google has done us all a big favor laying out “best practices”. Someone like Truste ought to grab these and run with them. If every legitimate software company followed these rules, we’d be a lot better off. In fact, if the Spyware removal applications agreed not to automatically remove any applications that can demonstrate they are in compliance with these rules, then the good guys who use software based downloading as a distribution methodology would be rewarded and the bad guys will suffer.

UPDATE: John Battelle has a long and interesting post on this topic.

#VC & Technology

Oldies But Goodies

I read today’s New York Times story on Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, and Randy Johnson. The headline is “Owning the Hill, Instead of Being Over It”.

Then i headed out the door for my ten minute walk to work. I put on my iPod headphones and tuned into Patti Smith’s Trampin’. I read about this new disc on Tom Watson’s blog earlier this week. Tom’s right, this is a great effort by Patti Smith.

About half way up Fifth Avenue, i realized that there’s another “Older is Better” story to tell. Some of the best music in the past year has come from women who are a long way from the Jessica Simpson, Britney Spears, Avril Lavigne crew, both in terms of age and quality of work. I’d put 50-year olds Patti Smith, Bonnie Raitt, and Lucinda Williams, and a 70-year old Loretta Lynn on this list. There are probably a few others that should be on the list as well.

#My Music


New York’s Central Park is an amazing place. Behind every hill, there is something magical.

One of the best things about Central Park is the free concerts they host at SummerStage.

They kicked off the season last night with a benefit concert (ie not free) to raise money for this year’s program.

The featured band was The Strokes.

We had a great night with clear blue skies. We went with the whole family, had a picnic, and listened to some great rock music under the stars.

The Strokes are a lot of fun. These guys met at the Dwight School in NYC in the mid-90s and have put together a great rock band. They are two guitars that create a wall of sound, a solid bass and drum rythm section, and a lead singer, Julian Casablancas, who has a great voice and is a natural on stage. That’s it.

We left a bit early because the kids have school today. But the crowd was digging it and we were too.

For thos of you who haven’t heard the band, here is one of my favorite songs, 12:51.

#My Music


Congratulations to Sunil Paul and the team at BrightMail. They announced a deal yesterday to sell the leading anti-spam filtering company to Symantec for $370 million in cash.

Jerry and I were early angel investors in BrightMail back when Sunil started the company. Spam filtering seemed like a nice idea but we wondered if it was ever going to be a big business. Thanks the the spammers, it has become a huge business.

Sunil was right and his bet has paid off nicely.

#VC & Technology

Transparency (continued)

The digital revolution is making it harder to hide stuff. And that has profound implications for society that we are just starting to realize.

Back in Vietnam, it was the nightly news broadcasts and the weekly news magazines that brought home the horrors of war.

Today, the digtal camera has “outed” the atrocities of Abu Ghraib.

You can’t stop digital content. The music labels have found that out the hard way. So has the Pentagon.

What’s next? Who knows?

But one thing is for sure. It’s a lot harder to keep things quiet these days. And I think that’s good thing.

#VC & Technology