Stories for Aug. 7, 2008

You don’t have to be a literature buff to know about the scene in Tom Sawyer where Tom, faced with the daunting task of whitewashing a fence, finds a way to get his friends to whitewash it for him. For web workers, there are countless sites […] Read more »

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BitTorrent today confirmed a report that it laid off part of its staff, though it disputed the number of people let go and the nature of the layoffs. The news had come to light after Valleywag ran a tip alleging the company’s cutbacks were due to […] Read more »

West Coast utilities Southern California Edison, Pacific Gas & Electric and Portland General Electric announced this week a few initiatives aimed at bringing electric vehicles closer to the road. Portland General Electric said it will focus on building out infrastructure for the electric vehicles through a […] Read more »

Hot on the heels of Mozilla Lab’s call for participation in exploring the future of the browser, and the experimental Weave service, comes Mozilla’s efforts to move messaging beyond email and to the types of communication now commonplace across social networks, blogs and services such as Twitter. Read more »

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The EPA has denied a request by Texas Governor Rick Perry to cut the federal Renewable Fuel Standard in half. The RFS mandates the blending of 9 billion gallons of grain-based ethanol into national gasoline supplies this year; the EPA is authorized under law to waive […] Read more »

Forget HD. In its perpetual quest to provide bigger and better entertainment (and to sell new gear), the consumer electronics industry is pushing 3D televisions. But first it needs to figure how to deliver the 3D tech and what types of standards need to be set […] Read more »

Heekya is a new online service that hopes to become the place where you tell your multimedia stories. It kicked off its alpha yesterday as part of LaunchBox Digital’s 2008 Portfolio of startups (which also included viral video company Zadby). Here’s a video narrated by Heekya […] Read more »

The news I ran across that mobile phone video provider MobiTV had passed the four million subscriber mark surprised me I’ll admit.  Watching TV-like video on my mobile phone is not something that occurs to me would be something I’d be likely to do but apparently […] Read more »

In the world of branding, Web 2.0 companies are clamoring for name originality. Bookgoo is out there in terms of weird names but in terms of applications for collaboration, their technology rocks. The company set out to “empower users to collaborate more effectively.” And you, dear […] Read more »

Bain Capital must be psychic. Apparently they’ve looked into the future and seen that TokBox, a San Francisco-based startup, will either grow into a large company or find a buyer for what is essentially a Flash-based, in-browser video chat service that’s gotten marginal traction. Sure, the […] Read more »

Nokeena Networks, a stealthy startup working on video delivery, let some details of its existence slip yesterday for a profile of the venture capital firm that incubated it. We’ve asked around and gotten some more details on what the company does. Santa Clara, Calif.-based Nokeena has […] Read more »

Updated: Quite a few people are experiencing an extended downtime on their Google Apps accounts, according to sporadic reports that have landed in my inbox. Some folks are not able to get their email, while others have not been able to get hold of their documents. […] Read more »

We’ve written about the benefits of outsourcing your chores, and we’ve covered the expanding field of virtual assistants. But though I’ve employed office staff in the past, I’m reaching the point where a VA might make sense. The problem is that I’m having trouble identifying chunks […] Read more »

Chinese Video Portal Raises 52.8 Million RMB ($7+ M USD); first round of investment led by Shenzhen Capital Group, Nanhai District Enterprise Growth Investment Trust Fund, and Beijing Huijin Lifang Venture Capital. (JLM Pacific Epoch Gets its Gaming Celeb; Johnathan “Fatal1ty” Wendel to provide […] Read more »

Cleantech entrepreneurs might consider turning off Sand Hill Road and heading to Park Avenue with today’s news that private equity firm Blackstone Group is establishing a new business group focused on cleantech investment. Blackstone, which has $113.5 billion worth of assets under management ranging from investments […] Read more »

Create free ringtones for your iPhone using only iTunes and songs you already have on your computer (This method only works with songs that are DRM free. To create ringtones using DRM protected songs please use this method). This method has been tested and works with […] Read more »

Video upload and analytics company TubeMogul has found that just over half of its users are monetizing videos, and the average CPM for those monetized videos is $12.39. Admittedly, TubeMogul’s data is limited. The company reached out to nearly 12,000 of its users, which represent a […] Read more »

I had an interesting video chat with James this morning and he’ll likely be blogging about the main topic in the near future. I don’t want to steal his thunder so I won’t even delve into the details of the conversation, but obviously it had to […] Read more »

Rentech, a company that turns hydrocarbons like natural gas and coal into alternative fuels, says it has started producing an “ultra clean synthetic fuel” at a demonstration unit in Colorado. It’s a controversial process, particularly when coal is used, because it can be a significant carbon […] Read more »

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