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Kickstarter, A Solution for the Patient

May 23, 2012

If you want to be involved - intimately involved with the manufacturing process behind a product you purchase then I suggest you immediately jump onto Kickstarter and start backing projects. The high-flying site has made lots of news in a short amount of time. In March of last year they received $10 million in funding. In its third year the site raised almost $120 million in funding - almost three times as much as total revenue from the prior years combined.

Perhaps the company's highest-profile project was Arianna Huffington looking to use the site to raise $1 billion to buy back the Huffington Post from AOL.

In December of last year I came to the conclusion that the TouchFire Keyboard - a silicone keyboard project on the site may be  the perfect companion for those of us using the iPad 2 as a data entry device.

So with my readers in mind I ordered it and waited.





More Advice on Buying Apple, Shorting Amazon

May 18, 2012

Yes Virginia, P/E ratios still matter

Two days ago I wrote a piece trying to justify how Amazon could have a P/E ratio 16x higher than Apple. In short, I couldn’t. Recently Rocco Pendola wrote a piece which says P/E ratios don’t mean much, instead good management does (a paraphrase).

Gadgets to Have Integrated Welcome Ads Soon?

May 18, 2012

If ads on the Kindle Fire Welcome Screen are successful, others will follow



There are a few things which are well known about Amazon’s Kindle Fire. First of all at $199 the company either loses money or at best breaks even depending on which analyst you speak with. We also know the version of Android the device runs is unusual as Amazon has its own proprietary shell around it.

Intel Finally Gets Mobile?

May 17, 2012

Intel is selling its computers quite nicely into PCs and servers and although we are in a so called "post-PC era" people keep buying computers by the tens of millions. The long-term challenge is in-part ARM, the instruction-set architecture which is being turned into highly efficient chips used in most mobile devices.

The challenge of course for Intel is the typical one of disruption from below. An example is how RAID allowed inexpensive and less reliable hard drives to replace larger disks in the market.

Likewise, the ARMv8 64-bit architecture application profile was defined two months ago and at some point soon we will see these chips in the field. Moreover, expect them to rapidly go multicore if not initially.



Pinterest Now Worth $1.5B

May 17, 2012

Now that was fast – Pinterest just raised $100M at a valuation of $1.5B in a round of funding led by Japanese e-commerce site Rakuten Inc. Pinterest's existing venture-capital investors such as Andreessen Horowitz, FirstMark Capital and Bessemer Venture Partners also participated according to a press release.

Hiroshi Mikitani, CEO of Rakuten said: "While some may see e-commerce as a straightforward vending machine-like experience, we believe it is a living process where both retailers and consumers can communicate, discover, and curate to make the experience more entertaining. We see tremendous synergies between Pinterest's vision and Rakuten's model for e-commerce. Rakuten looks forward to introducing Pinterest to the Japanese market as well as other markets around the world."

And the Japan connection makes sense as I have recently detected a dearth of Hello Kitty pins.

The Most Comprehensive Interop 2012 Video Interviews

May 16, 2012

In case you missed Interop 2012 in Las Vegas and even if you were there – I have some really good news for you. TMC was there and we shot about seven hours of the most important and engaging interviews possible. We have all the companies you need to know about in spaces such as private and public cloud to big data, analytics, network testing and more. We spoke with the small upstarts and the giants like HP, Cisco and IBM.

Justifying Amazon's 16x Greater than Apple P/E Ratio

May 16, 2012

One of the biggest surprises to me is comparing P/E ratios of tech companies against Amazon. Actually to be more specific, I marvel at Amazon’s P/E against pretty much any company I have seen lately. Now I don’t go around memorizing the price to earnings ratios of companies but yesterday I happened to be talking to TMC webmaster Robert Hashemian who is also an accomplished financial author having written Financial Markets for the Rest of Us. Together we compared the trailing P/E of Amazon against virtually any company we could think of like Adobe, Apple and Microsoft which were far lower.

GM to Facebook: Your ads Don't Work

May 16, 2012

When you are about to have one of the largest public offerings in the world - north of $100 billion and much of the reason for the size of your IPO has to do with advertising revenue, there is nothing worse than having one of the world's largest and most sophisticated advertisers telling you your ads don't work. And that is exactly what just happened to Facebook when GM pulled the plug on a $10 million dollar ad deal.

To put this in perspective, GM is the third largest advertiser in the US and its budget is absolutely huge. Last year in fact it was  $1.8B. The interesting part of the situation is that even though GM won't be continuing its ad spend this year it plans on continuing to spend $30M or so for Facebook content.

What this tells us is Facebook is just becoming a driver of the Splinternet or another Internet which advertisers and developers need to take into account.



Ultrabooks Finally Get Needed Attention From Intel

May 4, 2012

Intel is running a new ad touting the long-lasting Ultrabook which has hours of battery life. And while I applaud Intel for finally acknowledging this category needs marketing I am still at a loss. You see battery life is one of the features which makes a MacBook great and so is the wonderful design. We all know Ultrabooks exist almost exclusively so PC makers can compete with Apple.



So this being the case why do all the Ultrabooks except the ones from Asus and possibly Samsung look like absolute crap?



Important Stories From This Week's Business Insider Startup 2012 Event

May 4, 2012

Missed the Business Insider Startup 2012 event or just didn't take good notes? Well if either of these situations applies to you, TMC has you covered. Our network of sites has been populated with the must-know stories written by TMC's editorial team - Jamie Epstein and Juliana Kenny covered this event. Enjoy:



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