by Brian Solis
Myles Weissleder and the San Francisco Newtech Meetup is on fire. The room was packed, every seat was taken, the aisles congested with guests hoping to catch a glimpse of the latest crop of startups introducing the newest Web apps and communities. Hosted at the Metreon, SF Newtech has already outgrown its new digs – within three months!
Jonathan Crow of ThinkFree
The most popular question of the night was whether or not it was packed because of the night’s special guest (Guy Kawasaki) or simply because 200+ people are lining up to be part of the scene. I think it’s a little of both.
Guy Kawasaki’s Truemors was definitely the hit of the night. He was entertaining, charming, and honest. Guy has taken a lot of heat lately because of Truemors and the lack of its, um, value. He summarized his experience at the onset after boasting that his new site was started on just over $12,000, “Before it used to take over $1,000,000 to do a stupid thing, now it takes only $12k to do something stupid.”
Guy reminded us that Truemors was only in the spotlight because he is one of the big 3 who has recently launched new online apps, including Kevin Rose’s Pownce, Jason Calacanis’ Mahalo, and Guy Kawasaki’s Truemors.
Truemors is a web site that lets you “tell the world” about rumors, gossip, sightings, and interesting facts across a variety of popular categories. Readers can then read and rate each story. Truemorists can call in their truemor and have it converted to text, post it online, or send them via email or text message.
Truemors draws its inspiration from Twitter, BoredAt, Digg, PostSecret, PopSugar, and HotOrNot, sharing functionality and design elements with the most popular features from each.
What drove Guy Kawasaki to do this?
Guy loves the idea of the democratization of the web and said so several times. He wanted to give people a place where they can voice information and share it with the rest of the world. His main point was that the barrier of entry today is so low that almost anyone can build an interesting company, in his case, for $12,000 with a burn rate of about $150 per month in hosting expenses.
The difference however, is whether something is simply interesting or is it actually useful. It’s true. The barrier of entry has been lowered to the point where almost anyone can design and launch a new Web app. However, we’re inundated with too many “interesting” products/services and not enough useful tools.
To that point, Kawasaki added, “It’s all about the law of big numbers. The more things that are created, the more chances are thata few things wil be great. The more experiments the better.”
Guy wrapped up his 30 minute discussion by answering a great question from Jeremiah Owyang. who asked, “If this wasn’t your site, do you think it would still have been noticed?”
Kawasaki responded truthfully, “No. Instead it would have been considered a dumb ass idea that no one knew about. But, now it gets fun. I’m determined to prove the blogosphere wrong.”
Next up, Mo Kakwan of Blabberize. This is an interesting technology with a lot of potential, just poorly packaged. Basically it brings still pictures to life by allowing people to animate a particular area, usually the mouth, and add voice for a funny, and weird, talking head – a la Monty Python. The pictures can then be embedded in blog posts and on Web sites for all to see and enjoy.
Andy Sells of Jugglemystuff went up next. Jugglemystuff is described as collaboration and project managmenet for the rest of us. It is centralized information for distributed teams and work groups, making it the go-to place for collaborating and sharing information and ideas asynchronously. .
Project leads and team members can manage everything from simple lists to complex, multi-person projects and applications. Customizable views within and across projects give you “Big Picture” status with details a click away.
Rateitall is Web 1.0 meets Web 2.0. Lawrence Coburn is a Web veteran having started Rateitall in 1999 and currently ranks in the top 3,000 sites in the U.S. Lawrence previewed a new Rateitall blog widget that allows readers to leave feedback right on the blog and in turn, link the topic back to rateitall.com’s community of 800,000 monthly visitors.
Lastly, Barry Soicher introduced AdPerk. Fresh off their launch party, which we weren’t invited too, AdPerk offers advertisers a new outlet for their video assets by engaging and rewarding the people who watch them. AdPerk announced a deal with Dwell magazine, where visitors to the Dwell website will be given an opportunity to earn free issues to the magazine just by watching marketers’ short video messages. The expectation being that the magazine will convert more subscribers.
Additional highlights from the event:
Alex Notov of Startupism
Gil Heiman of Collanos
For more pictures, please visit the SF Newtech album on flickr.
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adperk rateitall truemors guy+kawasaki blabberize jugglemystuff web2.0 web 2.0 web+2.0 bub.blicio.us bubblicious thinkfree mahalo pownce