Data privacy and owning our personal data

The last startup I worked on had a mission to enable individuals to take ownership of their personal data. As it stands today, our personal data belongs to businesses. These businesses are successful if they can analyze the personal data we give them, to manipulate us. For example, to convince us to buy a product through an advertisement. “Persuasion” sciences… Read more →

A digital world order

Internet savvy startups are attacking industries and killing old businesses across the globe. In these pages, I’ve written about more than 150 such companies over the last four years. Due to work obligations, I’ve stopped writing. But here is a five-year plan that can be used to prioritize career and business strategy. Year One: Self-identify as a technology company. The businesses… Read more →

How does GoodRx make money?

TLDR; (if you don’t want to read it all) GoodRx is a marketing company that has partnered with a Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) or several PBM’s to generate traffic (sales). The PBM’s negotiate discounts with pharmacies and earn a transaction fee in exchange for sending the pharmacy customers. The marketer earns a transaction fee for helping the PBM. Currently, GoodRx does… Read more →

Datalogix bridges social and retail

One of the biggest challenges for consumer packaged good advertisers who market online is measuring whether or not their online advertising spend results in real purchases. These are companies with the largest advertising budgets in the world, companies like Procter and Gamble, Shiseido, L’Oreal, Pfizer, and Nestle. The inability to measure online advertising performance has been a major challenge for… Read more →

Startups built on startups – Superhost

You know the business landscape is changing when startups are creating an ecosystem of startups based upon them. We saw it with Facebook. I still think if Facebook didn’t make moves early on that frightened serious developers there would have been a lot more services companies built upon Facebook. Airbnb is the latest startup that has companies building service businesses… Read more →

Content without comments is a losing battle

When people talk about the future of media with bold predictions about how technology will affect it, they often underestimate the importance of content and its effects on how people interact with it. The two major topics of debate in new media is commenting on news articles and aggregation of content. Most media companies focus on whether or not requiring users… Read more →

SIP–VoIP Anomaly Detection using a stateful rule tree

This is a paper I worked on with members of Korea University security research center. It’s probably one of the last serious security research projects I will work on unfortunately. The paper was recently published in Computer Communications, which you have to pay to access. If you feel like reading technical security documentation, there is a older version available on Korea… Read more →

This article is guaranteed to go viral. Buzzfeed.

This is the unedited english version of the latest Sankei column, posted by request. Original is here: http://www.sankeibiz.jp/business/news/130114/bsj1301140502000-n1.htm If you want to know about new digital media, you don’t go to silicon valley, you go to silicon alley. New York City is where all recently major digital media businesses have been born. My home town. Its also the home to BuzzFeed,… Read more →

People innovate in America out of anger

UPDATE:  I received a lot of comments on hacker news and twitter. Some of them asked “if anger is so important why is there not as much innovation coming out of Greece or Nigeria or Ethiopia” which misses the point. 1) Solving a problem and scaling the solution across America is a huge market opportunity and is also very difficult.… Read more →