Get Well Steve!

January 14, 2009

steve_jobsApple just announced that Steve Jobs is taking a 6 month medical leave of absence.  Steve is a visionary and digital pioneer. We wish him the best towards a speedy recovery and look forward to more of his genious in the future.  Get well Steve!

Here’s the email sent to the Apple troops:


I am sure all of you saw my letter last week sharing something very personal with the Apple community. Unfortunately, the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well. In addition, during the past week I have learned that my
health-related issues are more complex than I originally thought.

In order to take myself out of the limelight and focus on my health, and to allow everyone at Apple to focus on delivering extraordinary products, I have decided to take a medical leave of absence until the end of June.

I have asked Tim Cook to be responsible for Apple’s day to day operations, and I know he and the rest of the executive management team will do a great job. As CEO, I plan to remain involved in major strategic decisions while I am out. Our board of directors fully supports this plan.

I look forward to seeing all of you this summer.


HD is Alive. The Rich Web is on the Way

January 6, 2009

When the web became part of our daily lives back in the mid-nineties we enjoyed a world of text and graphics. Video hit the superhighway and we were introduced to a newer experience. Still, there are few times when you look at your browser and your eyes go wide and you think ‘wow, that looks amazing!’. Well, my friends, times are a changin’. Get ready for the Rich Web.

YouTube just launched a dedicated HD page. Sure, Hulu added HD over a year ago, and even Daily Motion earlier this year already have HD but YouTube is the king and people are finally getting turned on to a richer online video experience. And, it’s wonderful.  Check out the difference between SD and HD:

HD difference

Sure, your video will load slower (for now) in HD since it depends on your connection and network, but that aside, it makes for a richer viewing experience.  And, since virtually all monitors are capable of 720p resolution your computer is already an HD screen. But what excites me most is not only that we have HD online but that there is a movement afoot to make the web a richer, better place.

Companies looking to lead the pack are developing richer solutions; products that are just as amazing to look at as they are to use. SearchMe makes search nicer, SlideRocket gives presentations pizzaz, Cooliris is crazy cool, and we’re working on something that will help our clients go from now to wow.  Once the ISPs deliver the fatter pipe then there’ll be no stopping us and the web we know and love today will be the rich, beautiful, emmerssive experience we deserve.

We’re going from a bike to a Benz and we’ll wonder how we ever lived without it.

Bad Economy = Next New Thing

January 4, 2009

einstien1 Looking forward to 2009 makes me think back to other periods in recent history when it looked like the economy was heading the way of flushing water.  It’s not difficult to realize that when people think long and hard about spending money, you need to be either selling something of value, or working on creating it.

We don’t need to go back that far to get examples of how desperate economic times gave life to innovations that changed the world.  The early 90’s we were coming off the raging 80’s and in recession.  Digital dreamers responded by giving us Netscape and the Web was born (ok, it already existed but only really real nerds were on usegroups. Netscape gave the web life).

When the bubble burst in 2000, shares plummeted and companies that should never have existed failed. Most notably, as we headed into economic worry, the geeks headed back to the garage. With not much venture capital money around, and everyone thinking ‘start-up’ was a bad word, the two kids in the garage started working on the foundation of what would become Web 2.0.

Simply put, when times are tough innovation happens. Clients and consumers are picky about spending, and you can’t bank on laughable valuations and venture capital money.  Creating another social network or Twitter knock-off won’t cut it. The game changers are already working on projects of value (trust me) and in a few years technology will change our world again.

So, with all the economic negativity out there have some solice in the fact that we will emerge, and when we do we’ll all be talking about the next new thing that we can’t live without. I can’t wait.