In mid-February, he'd Wales announced he wasn't leaving the U.S. for two months. (Necker is in the British Virgin Islands.) But a little white lite, so he can hobnob with the rich and powerful, ignoring his responsibilities as parent, startup founder, and spiritual leader of a social movement? That's the worldly Wales we've ungrudgingly come to admire. Go to Necker, Jimbo — carbon offsets be damned!
Jakob Lodwick is back in the Bay Area, kicking it at his cousin's San Francisco-based startup. The only thing slightly more terrifying than the prospect of one of our local girls becoming his new softcore pinup is the notion that Lodwick might end his blogging strike. Oh wait, he has — three times over. Lodwick, unemployed after getting fired from Connected Venture by Barry Diller, lasted 20 days without blogging. Alongside our daily dose of Jakob Lodwick, he'll expose us to stuff he likes, and apparently work on a political manifesto dubbed The Invisible Fist in which he'll attempt to destroy capitalism as we know it. Good luck on Sand Hill Road, Jakob.
When Jeff Bezos and company reported Amazon.com's earnings at the end of last quarter, they swore the Kindle was flying off the shelves. But I've never seen one in the wild. Or even heard of a sighting. Until today when I saw, thanks to Silicon Alley Insider, a photo of a girl reading a Kindle on the New York subway. Take that, Kindle-hater Steve Jobs. Have you ever seen anyone using a Newton on the subway?
Jobs told her off, saying her request was "rude." Surrounding Apple employees allegedly sniggered. Poor girl. As consolation, her retelling of the tale got her blog more than 3,000 votes on Digg. Ubiquitous egoblogger Robert Scoble caught Blue's reaction to the ordeal on video, eventually crashing Qik, his video-hosting service.
A tipster spotted the female half of Gawker's (and Valleywag's) favorite ex-couple, Julia Allison, leaving a CES party in Las Vegas with venture capitalist Mark Kvamme of Sequoia Capital. Kvamme, who was a frequent target of Valleywag emeritus Nick Denton, is responsible for Sequoia's investments in promising companies like LinkedIn. Oh, and also AdBrite.
We heard a rumor that Google executive Marissa Mayer, scheduled to appear at a Churchill Club event tonight in Palo Alto, may be demonstrating a cell phone running Google's Android operating system — that is, the fabled Googlephone. We'll believe it when we see it — so by all means, if you're going, snap a photo and send it in.
So this old guy brought his familiar patter to Google's Mountain View headquarters today — oh, and Tony Bennett was there, too. Bennett is just one in a series of musical entertainers brought to the Googleplex, which is a heck of a perk. It's like a free trip to Vegas without having to leave your office. No word on the set list Bennett performed. But given the proclivities of Burning Man attendee and Google CEO Eric Schmidt, might we suggest "Anything Goes"?
Yes, but can it handle pre-epochal timestamps? Didn't think so.
Ashton Kutcher's greatest contribution to geek culture — and no, we aren't referring to Internet telephone startup Ooma — is coming to Boston. Fulfilling every nerd's wildest fantasies, the guilty-pleasure reality show Beauty and the Geek is coming to Beantown on Saturday . Producers are searching for dweebs and bimbos willing to provide the CW network's viewing audience with endless entertainment at their personal expense. And the specifics of the casting call?
Really, we're confounded. David Hornik's Lobby conference is ostensibly an invite-only affair. But some of the attendees had us scratching our head. Spotted, Yahoo's Bradley Horowitz, Brad Garlinghouse and Kiersten Hollars enjoying some sun instead of participating in Jerry Yang's 100-day turnaround of the company. Then there's Jessica Livingston and Paul Graham from Y Combinator. There's nary a 22-year-old wantrepreneur in sight, so what's the draw of this conference for them? Other inexplicables: Kara Swisher from AllThingsD, and TechCrunch heavyweight Michael Arrington, two notoriously gossipy hacks. Wasn't this event supposed to be off the record? And does Arrington even know what that means? (Photo by bradley23)
While other startup founders have to stay home and, you know, work, these guys have the time and the spare $3,000 to spend hanging out at a zero-agenda conference in Hawaii. (For the record, we're jealous.) Spotted in Yahoo executive Bradley Horowitz's Flickr stream: Benchmark entrepreneur-in-waiting Nirav Tolia; "stepped-up" LinkedIn chairman Reid Hoffman; FeedBurner founder Dick Costolo, who's rolling in Googlebucks; Linden Lab CEO Philip Rosedale; Evan Williams from Twitter; Mashery's Oren Michels; and
Kevin Rose (and his new haircut) from Digg with Joshua Schachter from the Yahoo-owned Del.icio.us. One question: Is this really Meebo CEO Seth Sternberg? I don't recognize him looking so unnerdly. (Photo by: bradley23)
The venture capitalists spotted at this week's Lobby conference in Hawaii are not, we've noted, the Sand Hill Road dwellers who inflated bubbles past or present. No sign of anyone from Sequoia or Kleiner Perkins. So who is enjoying the tropical sun? Well, conference host and August Capital partner David Hornik, of course. Also photographed on the scene: Greylock's David Sze, SoftTech's Jeff Clavier, Foundation Capital's Mike Brown, Panorama Capital's Mike Jung, and Bay Partner's Eric Chin. Hats off to First Round Capital's Josh Kopelman, who is using his entrepreneurial skills to cash in during the scavenger hunt. (Photo by: bradley23)
Valleywag has a secret informant on the Big Island of Hawaii, where venture capitalist David Hornik is throwing his no-agenda, all-schmoozing conference The Lobby. Our spy, whom we've dubbed "The Lobbyist," reports that the hotel where it's being held is also hosting a meeting of the
California State Athletic Association. That means, of course, that Hornik's hand-chosen geek squad is looking even more pasty and out of shape next to the hot, young sporty set. (One wonders if Digg founder Kevin Rose's new haircut is getting him some play with the female athletes, or if he's staying faithful to longtime love Sarah Lane , who's with him in Hawaii .) Today, attendees are on a scavenger hunt. The contestants, inexplicably, are wearing long pants, despite the 90-degree weather. But we're sure that the site of their legs would be blinding. Central Station Alarm Association, which makes this whole item far less funny. (Photo by bradley23)
Everyone's heard of Kevin Rose, the genial, constantly drinking founder of Digg and host of the Diggnation webcast. And everyone's used to his sleepy-eyed, mopheaded good looks. Well, forget the mophead. From this
Valleywag spy photo pic we spotted on Yahoo executive Bradley Horowitz's Flickr stream, Rose got a buzz cut before flying to Hawaii for VC David Hornik's exclusive Lobby conference. Does this have something to do with that Captain America comic? How will his online-video fans react? Will his Diggnation numbers plummet? And will women continue to ask him to sign their breasts? (Photo by bradley23)
Facebook cofounder Dustin Moskovitz took some time to rehearse his Wednesday morning keynote at the CTIA Wireless conference at San Francisco's Moscone Center. No surprises are likely: Moskovitz's presentation, of which you're getting a sneak preview, will talk up Facebook's "unprecedented growth." Executives and board members are tiresomely fond of citing the stat that the social network's user base continues to grow a steady 3 percent a week. Expect, too, some figures on usage of the Facebook's iPhone-optimized wireless site. We're just curious what percentage of U.S. text-message traffic is carrying "pokes." (Photo by Brandee Barker)