Pinterest needs growth badly, so it is pinning places

Pinterest on Wednesday announced Place Pins, a new variation of its core product that allows folks to pin and create boards for places they like or want to visit. Pinterest’s diversification comes close on the heels of a massive round of funding at nosebleed valuations.


How direct-access solutions can speed up cloud adoption

Startups are widely adopting cloud computing, but often they deal with disproportionate infrastructure costs or cloud solutions that require completely revamped infrastructure. Established enterprises have been slow to embrace cloud computing for their own reasons, including security, speed of access to cloud resources, and runaway network costs.

Rewind: My favorite posts from 2012

Twitter, Google, Apple, Facebook, iPhone, Android — what’s new — dominated my writing during 2012. But there were others such as, Kickstarter and France’s Free. Here are some of my stories from this year that I believe will have an impact technology ecosystem in 2013.

Scaling Pinterest and adventures in database sharding

Pinterest has learned about scaling the way most popular sites do — the architecture works until one day it doesn’t. But in a talk at the Surge Conference two Pinterest engineers shared their wars stories. Here’s what they learned about keeping it simple and database sharding.

Why design is the key to the connected world

Intelligent and simple design is the key solution to creating meaningful experiences out of the connected world. Come hear from our speakers on this topic at RoadMap, including the CEOs of Instagram and Tumblr, designers Yves Behar and Tony Fadell, and former Twitter CEO Evan Williams.

Pinterest fights Chinese cyber-squatter

Cyber-squatting has been around for years but one Chinese man has especially aggressive in grabbing the names of popular US start-ups like Square and Etsy. More troubling for the companies, the man is also filing for trademarks.

What happens to advertising in a world of streams?

As we consume more and more content via real-time streams that come to us through Twitter and Facebook and newer platforms, how does that affect advertising? Everyone wants their ads to look like just another form of content, but that’s a lot harder than it sounds.

Pinterest drops invites and opens to all

Image-sharing site Pinterest, which has been invite-only since its launch in 2010, has now opened up to everybody. The site had nearly 20 million unique monthly visitors as of March 2012, according to comScore, and raised a $100 million funding round in May.

Social marketing platform Unified gets more Yammer-like

Enterprise-focused social marketing startup Unified Wednesday released an updated version of its social operating platform that layers on a Yammer-like user experience to the workflow specific to a brand or agency executing multiple social media campaigns.

Is it time for more off-grid options for data centers?

Massive thunderstorms knocked out Amazon’s web services on Friday night and the cloud giant was still struggling to get service back up on Saturday. To me the news raises the question: is it time for data center operators to more seriously investigate off grid options?

Gogobot gets visual with new Pinspired redesign

Social travel service Gogobot, is putting big pictures front and center as part of a new Pinterest-like web site redesign. But the company said it’s doing more than just helping people discover new places. It gives them the tools to get there too.

Parts of Amazon Web Services suffer an outage

Amazon web services are having trouble this evening and in the process are taking down some major sites. Among sites being impacted are Quora and HipChat. In addition, the Amazon outage has had an impact on Heroku, a division of Salesforce.

Pinterest, Palantir & harsh reality of SF real estate

To say that Silicon Valley real estate market is hot would be an understatement. Start-ups are are pushing the rents to stratospheric heights in parts of Silicon Valley. Thanks to fast growing companies like Pinterest, the real estate market is going to get even hotter.

Former MySpacers move into social commerce with Uncovet

Between Pinterest and Fab and Fancy and Svpply and Wanelo and Lyst and many other similar startups, the social-meets-design-meets-commerce space is nothing if not crowded. But a couple of former MySpacers believe they can push through the pack with Uncovet, an e-commerce site rolling out to the public today.

Social curation is much more than just a market

When we enable innate behaviors online, the result is far more significant than the creation of a new market, says Pearltrees’ Oliver Starr. Starr explains why he believes that today’s curation startups are paving the way for the full and complete democratization of the Web.

Now Pinterest is where all cool kids want to work

Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare .. these were hot destinations for job seekers. Pinterest, is the latest to join the elite club, except that it is sucking up talent from Facebook in droves and others such as Quora and Twitter employees are not immune to its allure.

Pinterest locked in stalemate with image owners

Image-sharing site Pinterest has been in negotiations for months with photo service Getty. A breakthrough could dispel some of the copyright questions hanging over the red-hot start-up — but one expert says not to hold your breath.

The path to Pinterest: Visual bookmarks and grid sites

In his post yesterday, David Galbraith shared lessons from his experience launching Wists, a visual bookmarking website that predated Pinterest. Today, Galbraith looks at the general history of visual bookmarks and grid sites that paved the way for Pinterest’s $1.5 billion valuation.

Quora gets $50 million. Q: Why? A: Because it can…

Quora, a Q&A service has raised a whopping $50 million in funding from co-founder Adam D’Angelo along with Facebook funder Peter Thiel, Northbridge Ventures and Matrix Ventures. One of the most over-hyped startups, the question is why is it valued so highly despite mediocre progress.

Pinterest vs. Facebook: Whose users spend more?

Apparently Pinterest users drop cash, then run. Jewelry and accessories website compared 50,000 shoppers referred from Pinterest to 50,000 shoppers referred from Facebook and says the Pinterest users spend way more money — $180 vs. $85 — but less time browsing the site.

Pinterest plans local-language launches

Pinterest is planning to roll out internationally. That could help it get ahead of copycat sites and gain users worldwide. To start, the company is seeking translators in French, German, Japanese, Portuguese and Spanish.

Monetize your social site without annoying your users

Members of social sites can get prickly when it comes to advertising. But even the most buzz-worthy social media startups need revenue to survive. Whether you use sponsorships, ads, or affiliate marketing, SkimLinks’ CEO Alicia Navarro has tips to help you monetize your social site.

How much does Pinterest actually make?

Based on statistical modeling, Rags Srinivasan believes there is only a .25 percent chance that Pinterest is making enough money to support its $200 million valuation. Here, Srinivasan considers all the scenarios — not just the most optimistic ones — to show us how much Pinterest earns.

Pinterest, we’ve got a business model for you

Information from Facebook on user “interests” is nothing compared to the affinity data that could be mined from Pinterest. The potential to aggregate, analyze, and deploy the site’s data is huge. Baynote CTO Scott Brave examines the types of affinity data that Pinterest could monetize.

Pinterest comes under spam attack

Now that social curation site Pinterest has become the hot-new social thing, with loads of traffic and highly addicted community, it seems to be time for spammers to take advantage of its traffic and intense virality. Earlier this evening the company came under a spam attack.

Everyone’s a curator, everyone’s a content creator

It used to be that we were all just consumers—or most of us were, anyway. We’d watch TV or read a book or listen to the music on the radio that was selected by others for us. But lately, there’s been an interesting shift in behavior going on… wants to be the Pinterest of dating, a new social dating service formed by former executives, is looking to leverage social networking and hyper-personalization and self expression to create a network that’s akin to the Pinterest of dating. It opened up in beta today.

Chill’s take on social video: Everyone is an expert

Social video startup Chill has seen huge traffic gains since it launched curated collections of videos last week. Chill co-founder Brian Norgard explains why collections are so important and what Chill learned from completely changing its core product twice in recent months.

Fancy turns social discovery into social commerce

Fancy, a self-expression social site, is launching a new demand-driven commerce model today that will let vendors and retailers sign up to be a seller on any item fancied on the site. They will be able to conduct the transaction right on Fancy.

When is the social curation bubble going to burst?

French startup Pearltrees just scored another $6 million to help scale up its social curation service that helps people save, sort and share what they find on the web. But with dozens of services in play, is this a bubble waiting to pop?

Lessons from Path and Pinterest: Tell users everything

Path and Pinterest are getting some significant backlash because of recent decisions that appeared to put their interests ahead of their users and a lack of disclosure about that behavior. It’s a welcome reminder that the trust of users is not something to be taken lightly.

Apple, Internet and the constant new normal

When Apple announced blockbuster earnings earlier this month, we were all shocked. A few days later, when comScore announced that little-known startup Pinterest had cracked the social network top ten, we were surprised. We shouldn’t be: This is the new normal for our technology-driven society.

Bigger than Google+, MySpace isn’t dead yet

MySpace, the grand daddy of social is still wheezing along, comScore says. In fact it is bigger than Tumblr and Google Plus. Infact, people spend more time on MySpace, a dying platform than on Google Plus. Pinterest just cracked the top ten list!

You are what you curate: why Pinterest is hawt

Pinterest is one of the hottest startups around these days and represents the latest buzzword in the Valley: curation. Here are some of my thoughts on why Pinterest and other such companies are getting attention and gaining traction with younger Internet users.

The new new commerce

The new breed of e-commerce sites offers consumers ways to socialize and be entertained. But as Rags Gupta of Brightcove points out, these new new commerce sites are taking advantage of old principles. Their innovation comes from introducing them online.

Two weeks in, is the new Delicious fixed?

The relaunch of Delicious was meant to be a phoenix-like resurrection — but instead was welcomed by a chorus of complaints about missing or broken features. After two weeks of scrambling to appease angry users, the company is making some progress… but is it enough?