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Mexico’s Most-Wanted Drug Lord Captured


http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304914204579399022997608930

Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman Arrested in Northern Mexico Early Saturday

Mexican authorities captured Sinaloa drug boss Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who has not appeared in video or photos since he escaped from prison in 2001.

MEXICO CITY—Mexican Navy marines captured Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán, the world’s most powerful drug lord, in a predawn raid Saturday on a modest condominium in the western resort of Mazatlan, officials said.

The capture likely ends the legendary career of the farmer who rose from poverty in the mountains of the state of Sinaloa and built an empire of cocaine and marijuana that made him a billionaire and caused much of the violence that has killed tens of thousands of Mexicans in the last decade.

The arrest of the capo, often described as today’s equivalent of the late 1980s Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, marks a victory for Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, and for his party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI. The PRI ruled Mexico for seven decades until it lost power in 2000, returning with Mr. Peña Nieto in 2012 elections.

“It’s a major coup for the Peña Nieto administration and its allies,” said George Grayson, an expert on Mexico and the drug trade at the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder hailed the capture as a “landmark achievement.”

Mr. Guzmán, believed to be 56 years old, was captured once before in 1993, but became a legend among drug traffickers by escaping, hidden in a laundry cart, from a maximum-security prison in Mexico in 2001.

He had been on the run ever since, a living symbol of the inability of the Mexican state to corral its powerful drug gangs or their corrupting influence on the country’s law-enforcement institutions. Most Mexicans believe the drug lord bribed his way out of jail.

It seems unlikely that the arrest will ease the violence. In the past, the capture or death of cartel bosses has often led to a short-term spike in violence as either a fight over succession breaks out within the cartel or other cartels try to take over turf from the deceased capo.

Cartels such as the Gulf Cartel and the Zetas, which have been weakened in recent years by government strikes, could fight over the drug routes and regions left on the table by Mr. Guzmán, said Raul Benitez, an expert on security at National Autonomous University of Mexico.

“There will be a war to control his territories,” said Mr. Benitez.

Mr. Guzmán arrived on a government airplane to Mexico City’s airport, where a waiting helicopter took him to prison. Two marines in camouflage uniforms firmly grasped the captured drug lord, one of them pushing his head down with his hand.

In addition to one of Mr. Guzmán’s alleged accomplices, authorities confiscated 133 weapons, as well as two grenade launchers and a rocket launcher.

The capture was the final scene in a month-long drama that began when intelligence agents discovered one of Mr. Guzmán’s hide-outs, a house with reinforced steel doors, in Culiacán, Mexican Attorney General Jesús Murillo Karam told a news conference.

Mexican military held Mexican drug lord Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman Saturday. European Pressphoto Agency

The house had underground tunnels that connected it to seven other nearby houses and was also linked to the city’s drainage system, which offered the drug lord an easy means of escape.

Mexican authorities could have captured Mr. Guzmán in previous days, but waited to ensure no civilians might be caught in a potential crossfire, Mr. Murillo Karam said. “It was an impeccable operation achieved by navy personnel,” he said.

U.S. intelligence played a role in the operation, but U.S. officials described this as very much a Mexican operation.

“It was a Mexican operation in Mexican territory,” said a top-ranking U.S. official. “We played a supporting role.”

Mr. Guzmán will likely be replaced by his close associate Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada, according to Mr. Grayson, the Mexico expert. He said it was unlikely the cartel would be torn apart by infighting.

“There was never a hint of hostility between El Mayo and El Chapo,” he said. “They worked together deftly.”

Mr. Guzmán’s power to corrupt security forces is the stuff of legend in U.S. and Mexican government circles. Four or five times, Mexican security forces arrived a day late to where Mr. Guzmán had just been. “There were more sightings of El Chapo than there were of Elvis,” said Mr. Grayson.

Many ordinary Mexicans had trouble believing the news.

Tracking Guzmán Across Mexico

“They finally got him? It would be good for the country, but I kind of doubt it. And if they have got him, they’ll let him go again. He’s untouchable,” said Jose Carcaño, a 35-year-old office worker.

Others said they were sure the peaceful arrest was the product of a secret deal between the drug lord and the Mexican government.

“These types of things are often arranged,” said Carlos Velasco, 53 years old, a small-business man in Mexico City.

Analysts said the capture should boost confidence among Mexicans and foreign governments in the Mexican government and in particular the PRI, which was widely seen as responsible for allowing drug gangs to become so entrenched in Mexican society during the party’s long rule from 1929 to 2000.

Many Mexicans worried that Mr. Peña Nieto’s administration would strike a bargain with drug lords to reduce violence in exchange for letting them ferry their illicit products.

“This eliminates any suspicion that Peña Nieto was going to negotiate with the cartels, and shows he is serious about fighting drug trafficking,” said Mr. Benitez.

Mr. Guzmán’s capture was also a triumph for Mexico’s navy. Far smaller than the army, the navy is seen by Washington as more efficient and trustworthy. It has played a role in the capture or death of several top drug lords.

For many in Mexico, Mr. Guzmán is the most daring and intelligent of the drug-gang leaders. His cartel, while brutal, often avoided kidnapping and extortion carried out by other gangs, crimes that angered many ordinary Mexicans. The effect was that Mexico’s army focused much of its attention on arresting leaders of other cartels, such as the bloodthirsty Zetas.

One of four brothers, Mr. Guzmán was born in poverty in a Sinaloa mountain hamlet in the county of Badiraguato, which has the dubious distinction of being the birthplace of most of Mexico’s famous drug lords. Badiraguato’s location has a lot to do with it: It is the gateway to Mexico’s “golden triangle,” a remote, mountainous intersection of Sinaloa, Durango and Chihuahua states where opium and marijuana have been grown for generations.

As a young man, Mr. Guzmán rose through the ranks to become a top lieutenant for Miguel Ángel Félix Gallardo, another Badiraguato native and former police officer who had become Mexico’s top drug lord. Known as El Padrino, or the Godfather, Mr. Félix Gallardo cobbled together a super-cartel dominated by fellow Sinaloans called “The Federation.”

But the relative unity imposed by Mr. Félix Gallardo collapsed after his arrest in 1989. His empire, in particular the border crossings that were useful smuggling points, was divided up among his lieutenants. Mr. Guzmán and his close friend Héctor “El Guero” Palma got the border crossing at Mexicali, about 70 miles from Tijuana.

Mr. Guzmán began building an empire of his own. He pioneered the use of underground tunnels across the U.S.-Mexico border to ferry drugs. One such tunnel near San Diego had electricity, air vents and rails to transport the drugs, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Mr. Guzmán operated an assembly line, packing cocaine into chili pepper cans under the brand La Comadre, exporting the drugs to the U.S. by rail, his former top accountant, Miguel Angel Segoviano, testified in 1996 at the trial of one of Mr. Guzmán’s associates. In return for the drugs, Mr. Guzmán imported into Mexico millions of dollars packed into suitcases flown into the Mexico City airport, where bribed federal officials made sure there were no inspections.

Part Al Capone and part Jesse James, Mr. Guzmán became a folk hero, feted on YouTube videos and by musicians who penned ballads, known as corridos, in his honor. He is known throughout Mexico simply as “El Chapo,” Mexican slang for a short and stocky man.

Adding to his mystique, “El Chapo” survived several assassination attempts by rival gangs, including a 1993 attack that killed a Roman Catholic cardinal.

—Laurence Iliff and Amy Guthrie in Mexico City contributed to this article.

Write to José de Córdoba at jose.decordoba@wsj.com and David Luhnow at david.luhnow@wsj.com

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304914204579399022997608930

50 Social Media Habits You Can Stop Doing Now


“Google doesn’t really have an algorithm to degrade content when it’s no longer good advice,” says David Spark, the founder of Spark Media Solutions, a writer, and a podcaster.

That means lots of bad advice continues to rank on Google search results.

A few years ago, for example, I advocated following back everyone who followed you or your brand on Twitter. Given the growth of spambots and proliferation of robo-DMs and increasing decibel of noise on social media, I now take a more nuanced approach.

Similarly, three years ago David wrote a white paper, “How to #Trend on Twitter,” in which he suggested repeatedly asking followers for retweets. “This is now officially horrible advice,” he said recently in a Q&A. “While we want to help our friends out, doing so repeatedly, like asking your friends to help you move, becomes a nuisance and is in no way a form of engagement.”

The realization that bad advice continues to badly influence online behavior inspired David to publish the ebook Hazardous to Your Social Media Health: 50 Previously Condoned Behaviors We No Longer Recommend.” He surveyed 56 social media industry influencers (including me) and asked us one question:

What was once considered smart advice that now you no longer recommend?

David then curated 50 of the items into his ebook, released earlier this month.

Not all of the advice is intuitive. Some of it (like “#5 from Charlene Li: Stop Posting to Your Personal Blog“) is counterintuitive and a bit controversial. But, together, the 50 points are meant to increase meaning and allow you to shed useless social activities this spring the way a Golden Retriever sheds his winter coat.

Some of my favorites:
“Stop wasting your time and your followers’ time by posting images with pithy statements, pointless ‘discussion’ questions (e.g., “What’s your favorite salsa?”), and photos of adorable pets,” David writes.

“While cheap ‘Likes’ and comments will increase your Klout and Kred scores, they do nothing to build your brand or business.”

The implied reciprocity of LinkedIn testimonials can feel compulsory, devaluing their overall trustworthiness and usefulness, David writes, adding, “Implied reciprocity is not the backbone of trustworthy recommendations.”

I’m the first one to talk about the opportunity of social media to put a human face on a corporate edifice. But this is sane advice from Joe Chernov, who suggests things have gone a little too far:

“‘Humanize the brand’ was sound advice initially—when too many brands were too ‘corporate’ on social media—but today I see brands sharing absurdist memes or making politically charged statements, and I realize it’s time to reintroduce a measure of sobriety into our corporate feeds.”

Gamified “check-ins” with Foursquare, Facebook Places, and other “check-in” apps were fun at the beginning, but now they are tiresome manual chores with little inherent value for the one checking in.

This one is mine—since I’ve gone from being a Foursquare fiend to Foursquare foe in the last few years. (One of my colleagues actually messaged me at one point during the height of my Foursquare fervor to call BS: “Come on! You can’t legit be the mayor of an airport taxi line!”)

Download the full ebook here (note: registration required), and check out of 50 things you can stop doing to lighten your own social load.

* * * * *

To read more from Ann on LinkedIn, please click the FOLLOW button above or below.

 

 

Ann Handley is the Chief Content Officer of MarketingProfs and the co-author of the best-selling book on content marketing, Content Rules: Wow to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business. Want more? Take a stroll over to AnnHandley.com

Posted by:Ann Handley

When Founders And Investors Split Over An Acquisition Offer


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Editor’s note: Tomio Geron is head of content at startup Exitround. This is part of a series of posts on the tech M&A market. Follow him on Twitter @tomiogeron.

For one founder who recently sold his startup, it was the culmination of a long journey. At the same time, the founder, who spoke to me on the condition of anonymity, had problems during the acquisition process, feeling bullied by a venture investor.

The investor argued against a sale of the startup, and then after agreeing to the sale, proceeded to call the buyer and yell about terms of the deal. The investor also pushed for certain terms that the founder felt were unfair and benefited the investor.

The founder was pleased with the outcome but felt powerless to stop this investor from essentially steamrolling the process.

“They didn’t want to sell because, for them, the deal was too small,” the founder says. “Eventually our investors inserted themselves into the negotiations. They actually screwed things up for us because they demanded more and actually offended the buyers.”

This type of story rarely gets publicly told in Silicon Valley, since founders and investors don’t want to reveal how the sausage is made in negotiations — and more importantly don’t want to criticize each other in public and break Silicon Valley’s unspoken rule of positivity. But because of how venture capital is structured (more on this below), and because of the many startups that will need to sell without being able to raise more funding in the current environment, these types of situations are bound to come up.

Negotiating with a buyer is a challenge for founders in an acquisition. But negotiating with one’s own side — the investors — can be just as difficult, if not more so. These disagreements typically arise when startups get an offer to sell and the founders and venture investors disagree about what to do. These offers, even if relatively small in Silicon Valley terms — say $10 million or $20 million — can be “life-changing” for founders. But for venture investors, particularly with big funds ($300 million, $400 million or even $1 billion), smaller exits are not appealing. To explain why, we need to look at how traditional venture funds are structured.

Fund Economics

VCs typically want a good venture fund to make 3-5x their money. In other words, a fund with $250 million invested would have to return $750 million to $1.25 billion from the fund’s companies that are acquired, IPO, or are otherwise sold off in some form. A 4x return would net about a 2.5x distribution to the fund’s limited partners after fees to the general partners. So VCs depend on massive “home run” exits. For a $250 million fund, VCs would require at least three to four exits of $1 billion or 10 exits of $400 million. (This assumes a VC fund would get 20 percent of the exit price.)

As a result, smaller sub-$100 million exits aren’t that attractive to most large VCs, particularly if they have made a large investment. Many would rather not sell, and instead they roll the dice and hope for a larger outcome. “VCs often look at return on their money as opposed to IRR (as a metric). The fact that they made 4x (return) on $5 million over nine months on a $500 million fund: who cares?” says Villi Iltchev, EVP of corporate development at LifeLock.

To be clear, I’m not saying that all VCs are mistreating startups or behaving badly. I’m not even arguing that the investors’ actions described above are necessarily wrong. (Though it does explain why some founders privately complain about VCs.) And of course, unlike the investor described above, many investors do let their founders make the call on acquisition offers without pressuring them at all.

Aligning Interests

So while many VCs don’t like to talk about it, their immediate economic interests can diverge from their startups, particularly in smaller acquisitions, Iltchev says. “For founders, especially those who are not independently wealthy, their tolerance for risk is usually lower. VCs are in the business of managing risk on a portfolio basis. For founders an exit can be a once in a lifetime chance to change their life for their family. For investors the same transactions may be immaterial.”

This isn’t to say VCs (or founders) are necessarily at fault. The different economic interests are inherently part of the venture model. Other structures may evolve but this is now the dominant model. That certain investors don’t adhere to these fund economics and let founders make their own decisions is a credit to them and their long-term thinking to try to keep founders coming back to them for future investments.

There are also things that venture firms have done to better align interests of founders and investors. Founders Fund created Series FF stock, which gives founders more flexibility to sell shares. And many venture firms now allow founders to take a small percentage of “money off the table” in a secondary transaction to reduce the financial need for founders to sell early.

Different Investors

Of course, not all investors have the same interests. The larger a VC fund, and the more of their money they have invested in a company, the less likely they are to like a smaller exit. Smaller seed investors or micro-VC funds, which are proliferating, don’t need billion-dollar exits to return their funds, so they are happier with smaller exits — what Dave McClure calls a “Moneyball” model. This makes sense, since about 88 percent of tech acquisitions in the last five years with announced prices were less than $100 million, according to Capital IQ. Also, sites like AngelList and FundersClub enable more individuals to invest, and these individuals typically don’t push for massive exits.

Despite the potential conflict of interest I’ve described (i.e. founders want to sell but investors don’t), some venture investors will help negotiate a deal. Particularly for younger, less experienced founders, investors will get actively involved. And some smaller angels or micro-VC investors have less incentive to oppose smaller acquisitions so there can be less of a conflict. For example, seed stage investor Manu Kumar, founder of K9 Ventures, has negotiated acquisitions for a number of his startups.

Psychology

For founders it can be difficult to disagree with an investor on a sale. In particular, first-time founders often feel indebted to investors for taking a chance on them. So to turn around and say, “No we don’t agree with you,” can be hard to do.

Many VCs have rights they can use to try to block an acquisition. But most rarely use them, particularly if a founder makes a good case for a deal as the best possible outcome for a company. VCs do not want to be known as  “not founder friendly,” even if they hate a deal and feel it is unfair. But they’ll complain privately. Like the anonymous founder mentioned above, Iltchev has received calls and been yelled at by investors who are unhappy with a deal.

Buyer View

For buyers, of course, it’s complicated when sellers and investors aren’t on the same page. Buyers don’t want to negotiate with multiple parties in the same company. On the other hand, if a VC is calling a buyer, that can mean the founder has already decided to take the deal. “If the investor is calling me to negotiate terms, it is probably because they have already lost the battle with the founder and they are just trying to beat me up,” Iltchev says.

At top Silicon Valley buyers, it is standard to treat investors well, even if they don’t technically have to. For example in an acqui-hire – where a buyer just wants the team but not the product or IP — a buyer could just hire a startup team and not pay the investors anything. But most big Silicon Valley buyers want to stay on good terms with investors — who, after all, send them companies to buy — so they will try to make investors happy by paying back their original investment, if not more. (Non-Silicon Valley buyers do not necessarily play by these rules.)

I will be extremely cautious before ever accepting VC investment again and would only do it on my terms.

Founder Choices

The anonymous founder mentioned above, reflecting on the experience, says, “My advice would be to make sure you have someone who will stick with you not just when things are going well, but during the inevitable struggle that all startups face. It’s fine to have a strong investor who pushes you and fights for what they think is best for the company, but hopefully it’s not just what’s best for them. That said, I will be extremely cautious before ever accepting VC investment again and would only do it on my terms.”

For founders the best way to avoid these problems is to choose the right investor. Vet your investors and have honest conversations before they invest. Ask them what their return profile is and what kind of exit they’re expecting for your company, says Ursheet Parikh, former CEO of StorSimple, which was acquired by Microsoft, and a new partner at Mayfield Fund.

“Some investors may not appreciate you talking to any large companies early because they are concerned that these strategic buyers may either be a distraction or try to buy you early on the cheap,” he says.

That’ll give you an idea of what you are expected to deliver and whether you’re ready to accept that money and the strings attached. And have an honest conversation with the investor about what would happen if you disagreed with him or her on an acquisition offer. The more honest and transparent they are with you the better. Ultimately the more you prepare while choosing your investor, the better position you’ll be in when acquisition offers come in.

Image by Shutterstock

http://techcrunch.com/2014/02/22/when-founders-and-investors-split-over-an-acquisition-offer/

That Amazon Prime Price Hike Is Already Happening In Europe


Adriana Lee February 21, 2014 Play

Amazon is raising the price of Amazon Prime subscriptions in the U.K. and Germany by roughly 60% to 70% starting February 26, it announced Friday. The new fee coincides with Amazon’s decision to include streaming video in the deal for its European customers and may be a sign of things to come for U.S. users as well. Amazon said a few weeks ago that it may impose similar increases for domestic Prime users, who have access to free streaming since 2011.

http://readwrite.com/2014/02/21/amazon-prime-price-hike-uk-germany-streaming#awesm=~owEAkYAN9O1gzX

Co-Founder Love – Applying Psychology to Startups!


Something that has always fascinated me about startup life has been the view that startups are marriages between co-founders. It makes sense. If you decide to go full-time on your startup idea, you’ll be spending an inordinate amount of time with that person; you might even be living together. Unlike romantic relationships, you can’t run away from your problems — your personal livelihood via your career is at stake.

Defining Love

Romantic relationships, unlike most other relationships, aren’t governed by logic — they are driven by passion and commitment. They can be roller coasters with blissful highs and heart-wrenching lows.

So what is love? One of my favorite representations of love is “The Triangular Theory of Love” developed by psychologist Robert Sternberg. He theorizes that love is made up of three components:

1. Intimacy (attachment, closeness, connectedness)
2. Passion (sexual attraction, limerence)
3. Commitment (short-term: the decision to stay together; long-term: plans made with each other)

With all three components, you have love; any other mixture is a subset of love — like infatuation.

The Triangular Theory of Startups

Given the relationship between startups and marriages, the Triangular Theory of Love can be applied to startup co-founders with a few adjustments to the definitions:

1. Intimacy (attachment and closeness with your co-founders)
2. Passion (for the idea and the startup itself)
3. Commitment (short-term: to stay together as a team; long-term: incorporating the startup into your personal future)

A) Non-startup (N/A)

You don’t have intimacy, passion, or commitment. Non-startups make up most of our relationships; they are simply casual encounters. This could be anyone you met at a networking event, cold emailed, or went to a conference with.

At this stage, it’s important to not write people off. This person can potentially turn into a friend, mentor, or co-founder; you just don’t know yet!

B) Friendship (Intimacy)

You have intimacy. You act warmly towards the person and there’s a bond, but you don’t share an intense passion or any long-term commitment. This might be a fellow founder you openly discuss your problems with over the occasional coffee. Maybe it’s “that person” you always run into at events and can always count on to fill awkward voids. Regardless, you genuinely enjoy talking to them and seeing them and have a relationship, but you’re passionate about different topics and there are no expectations of staying in touch.

At this stage, it’s important not force your startup idea down someone’s throat. Too often, I see enthusiastic entrepreneur hopefuls try to “sell” friends on ideas and bring them on as co-founders.

C) Infatuated startup (Passion)

You are both super passionate about a particular idea, space, or product — and you just met! You don’t have intimacy or commitment but who cares, you’ve been dying to do this idea since forever, and so are they! You’re still learning about the person but isn’t it amazing to meet someone who “gets it” and understands why you’re so excited about the space? It feels awesome talking to them and you can’t wait for the next time you chat. Infatuated startups often turn into romantic startups over time if intimacy develops, so try working with them — this can be the beginning of a beautiful thing!

At this stage, it’s important not to jump into any long-term commitments without better understanding each other. Here, it’s key to build intimacy to determine whether there’s a long-term fit going forward.

D) Empty startup (Commitment)

You are committed to each other but there isn’t any intimacy or passion. In marriages, this is typically the stage where, “even though we hate each other, we better stay together for the kids.” But how did you get here? Maybe you had a falling out with your co-founders, lost passion for the idea, or the startup pivoted to a new vision. Either way, you feel the need to stay with your startup because it’s turning revenue, for equity cliff/vesting purposes, or the fear that you’ll destroy your reputation with the community or investors.

Worse, you might be motivated to stay due to the sunk cost fallacy. Entrepreneurs, unlike most other occupations, require a certain irrational. Some founders don’t know when to walk away, especially if they’ve spent a lot of time on their startup, and would rather go down with the ship.

At this stage, it might be a good idea to consider whether your startup makes you happier or makes you a better person. A lot of first-time entrepreneurs get stuck in this trap, especially if their startup is doing well.

E) Romantic startup (Intimacy+Passion)

You’re passionate about the idea and you have intimacy with your co-founders. This is the startup ideal that’s romanticized by your corporate world friends. You’re living the life! The idea is awesome and you love your co-founders — hopefully you’ll get acquired within the year! You hope the startup does well but if it doesn’t, it’s ok since you’ll have a good story to tell and it’ll open a ton of other opportunities.

At this stage, I think it’s a good idea to make sure everyone’s on the same page. Are we sticking together through thick and thin? What happens if we pivot? What’s our runway? Having these conversations early on, especially when things are sunny, sets expectations and lowers the risk of co-founder meltdowns when you eventually run into speed bumps.

F) Companionate startup (Intimacy+Commitment)

You’re intimate and there’s commitment, but you’re not passionate about a shared idea or startup. This is either a close friend, an awesome co-founder, or likely both. How did you get here? You likely had a startup with co-founders you think are awesome, but ended up pivoting to an idea that you’re less passionate about, but that has better product/market fit. Alternatively, you applied to an accelerator with friends using an idea that had huge potential, but you didn’t really care for. You get in, so you feel committed to the idea despite not being overly passionate about it.

Here, it might be good to figure out whether there is a different startup idea that really ignites your fervor. You love your co-founders because they’re awesome and you want to stick together because you’re a great team, so why not build something you love? Life is short. As Alexis Ohanian says, “[your] resources are best used to help projects that make the world suck less.”

G) Fatuous startup (Passion+Commitment)

You’re passionate and committed, but lack intimacy; it’s a “whirlwind marriage” where your commitment is based of your passion. You just met but you’re willing to commit to them as co-founders because you think the idea is just that awesome. With each other, you have to be unstoppable, right? Maybe your enthusiasm for the idea gets you into an accelerator, funding, or some other traction figure, either way, you’re committed to making this work — despite only recently meeting each other.

At this stage, you should try to build intimacy. Do you actually like being with each other? Does every word that comes out of their mouth piss you off? This might turn into your dream, or your nightmare.

H) Consummate startup (Intimacy+Passion+Commitment)

This is the ideal startup. You have intimacy, passion, and commitment. This is the true ideal that entrepreneurs should strive towards. These are the startups where you can tell the founders are as passionate about the idea on Day 900 as they were on Day 1. They love their co-founders and can’t imagine themselves happier over the long-term working with anyone else. They’ve been able to overcome their few difficulties gracefully, and enjoy being together as a team. This makes me think of Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi (Dropbox); Larry Page and Sergey Brin (Google); or Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah (HubSpot).

If you’re lucky enough to have this type of startup relationship, keep note that it’s harder maintaining it than achieving it. You have to continually strive to translate these components — intimacy, passion, and commitment — into actions. Consummate startup love isn’t permanent; as originally theorized by Sternberg’s Triangular theory of love, “without expression, even the greatest of loves can die.”

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We Always Know Where We Are


Imagine reading a science fiction novel when you were a kid that said this:

The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a space-based satellite navigation system that provides location and time information in all weather, anywhere on or near the Earth, where there is an unobstructed line of sight to four or more GPS satellites. It is maintained by the United States government and is freely accessible to anyone with a GPS receiver.

Imagine the book goes on to explain that everyone has a GPS receiver on them at all times, built into their handheld computing device.

Of course, the quoted paragraph is actually from the Wikipedia entry for GPS (and the bit about everyone carrying one is just true). We take this technology for granted now, but it’s pretty mind-blowing. I mean, remember getting lost? That sucked.

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BrainSpace.com – We Build Great Software


Brainspace Corporation makes software that connects people

Brainspace Corporation makes software that connects people and knowledge through a semantic intelligence platform. Brainspace processes information like the human brain—evaluating content, meaning and connectedness and determining not just relevance, but value. Brainspace’s suite of solutions will transform the way you find and connect to people, data and knowledge. Contact us for more information, or sign up now for the invitation-only beta of our new social curation app.

(VIA. BrainSpace)

duxter_logo

Gamers Rejoice! Duxter.com Rewards Your Gaming Way Of Life!


Track Game News

Stay in the loop by tracking all the latest news from your favorite games. Once you’re tracking a game, all the latest information will appear in your news feed.

Share

Show off your accomplishments or talk a little smack by posting screenshots, videos, and statuses of your latest game accomplishments.

Connect

Find and meet fellow gamers who love the same games you do. Duxter is also the perfect place to meet up with teammates, clan members and friends.

Play Games

Our online arcade is rapidly expanding and full of awesome games. You can live chat with others playing the same game you are, and automatically submit your high scores to the Duxter leaderboards.

Earn Rewards

Earn Duckets for completing Duxter quests or in-game achievements, which get you discounts on games, gear and other items in our Duxter store.

(VIa. Duxter)

PlayHaven – Finally, An Engine For The Business Side Of Your Games – PlayHaven.com


PlayHaven – Over twenty thousand games, one hundred seventy six million monthly active users, 3.5+ billion monthly sessions in over two hundred twenty countries. PlayHaven’s performance-based advertising solutions regularly deliver quality players from the best games-focused advertising network.

“I routinely analyze every distribution partner for quality.
PlayHaven always comes out on top.” – Gaia Online

“PlayHaven delivers every time on every request we made of
them. We are proud to be a partner.” – Phoenix Age

“PlayHaven consistently delivers us high volumes of
top quality players.” – Grow Mobile

(VIA. PlayHaven)

Smart Travel Advice: Open Yourself Up To The World


Don George describes himself as a “travel evangelist” but he is much more than that. Yes, he loves to talk about the life-changing possibilities of travel, which started for him when he visited Paris in college. But he is also a best-selling author and writer, regarded by many as the preeminent travel writer of his generation. He’s served as the global travel editor for Lonely Planet, the travel editor for the San Francisco Examiner/Chronicle and Salon.com and currently is an editor at large for National Geographic Traveler. And he’s an online journalist, having recently launched his own website. Don’s current project is selecting the best from his hundreds of published articles and essays for an anthology that will celebrate the two passions of his career: travel and travel writing. “I know firsthand how travel can change your life,” he says. “And I love speaking, teaching, and writing about this.”

What makes him the world’s smartest traveler? It’s not just his impressive resume, but his approach to travel that distinguishes George. Living in Paris, Athens, and Tokyo for three years after graduating from college, he explored Europe, Asia, and beyond – often without the help of a guidebook – before settling into a career in travel journalism. “The more I traveled, the bigger the world became, and the more the wonders of the planet revealed themselves,” he says. “Over time I realized one fundamental truth: The more I open myself up to the world, the more the world opens itself up to me.” And that brings us to his travel advice, which is to be open, or as he puts it, to practice the “fine art of vulnerability” which can lead to connections and illuminations. “The world is essentially a friendly place and the people you encounter — whatever their backgrounds and beliefs — are more similar to you than different from you,” he adds. “Ask for locals’ advice and help on the road, and your journey will be enriched in unimaginable ways.”

The World’s Smartest Traveler is a weekly series about the visionaries who inspire us to travel smarter. Its curator, Christopher Elliott, is the author of the upcoming book, How to Be The World’s Smartest Traveler (National Geographic Books).


Photo: Don George