Tuesday Feb 17, 2009

Sun Microsystems, Cloud Computing and the premier European VC event 'Entrepreneur Country'

Entrepreneur Country At Sun UK we recently supported and attended "Entrepreneur Country" a major European Start Up and VC event.

Acting as a rallying cry to the entrepreneurial, VC and Start-up communities, the event affirmed that now is the best time to start your own company and that entrepreneurs were key to the recovery of the economy from the recession.

Almost 300 of the UK’s leading entrepreneurs, including Caffè Nero founder Gerry Ford and Betfair co-founder and Chairman Edward Wray, shared stories of success at the event. Roman Stanek, a founder of NetBeans, and now founder and CEO of Good Data Corp and successful serial entrepreneur, said "tough times create tough companies", whilst Gerry Ford, urged us to "be restless and relentless" in the pursuit of success. The seminars were held at the Institute of Directors (IoD) in central London and coincided with the official launch of Entrepreneur Country online.

Other highlights of the day included keynotes from Sir Paul Judge (from the Enterprise Education Trust on ‘Risk and Enterprise’), Glen Manchester (Founder and CEO of Thunderhead), Ed Wray (Co-Founder and Chairman of Betfair), Niall Harbison (Founder and Chef at iFoods.tv), and David Courtier-Dutton and Paul Brown (from SliceThePie).

The event was organised and hosted by Ariadne Capital, an entrepreneurial investment and advisory firm. Ariadne was set up by current CEO Julie Meyer; probably best known as being a founder of First Tuesday, the largest global network of entrepreneurs (which many credit for igniting the Internet generation across Europe).

The agenda also included two panel sessions discussing Online Gaming (and virtual worlds) and Cloud Computing (and, to an extent, it's impact on the entrepreneurial, VC and Start-up communities and how they might best capitalise on it). The later of which I had been asked to take part in of behalf of Sun. Cannily I kept mental notes and have been able to write the session up as a separate blog post "Cloud Computing panel interview with Sun Microsystems at 'Entrepreneur Country'" (for further background material on Cloud Computing you may also want to check out my "Cloud Relationship Model" article). The questions we were asked included:

  1. Surely we’ve heard all of this before in various forms and guises? What is different this time? Why will it work? ...response #1
  2. For this stuff to become truly embedded it will need to move from the man in the street to the corporate. Corporate CIOs are a risk averse bunch especially when you move into some sectors (e.g. Financial Services). What will influence the CIOs' buying decision? ...response #2
  3. It was all very easy when you went out and bought or developed software, installed it yourself, ran it yourself, etc. Does working in the cloud bring new issues with regards to data ownership, IP rights, other legal issues, etc.? ...response #3
  4. What is your vision for the future and where this goes? ...response #4
  5. An audience driven Q and A session including responses to "What do you think of Microsoft's Azure Cloud initiative?" and "What is Sun's Cloud Computing strategy?" ...response #5

I really enjoyed the day and had a productive time networking and meeting people, all of whom shared with me their vision, enthusiasm and wonderful business ideas. I met people from MovieStorm, TechnologyDen, NewVoiceMedia, Broadcom UK, SaaSPlex, Spinvox, Teamer, and a quite a few others too. Some of these companies had been funded by Enterprise Ireland and it was very good to see them there as well as representatives from the UK's Technology Strategy Board.

Accompanying the days themes of Invention, Innovation and Entrepreneurism were handouts, books and other resources, and I picked up a copy of Jeremy Coller's new book "The Lives, Loves and Deaths of Splendidly Unreasonable Inventors".

On the night we went to an associated networking dinner where I fell deep into conversation with a number of people including Paul Flanagan, Executive for Digital Entertainment at Ariadne, Declan Cunningham, Director at Ariadne, and Tom Salmon, founder of AfterShow and Traffic Digital.

The event was supported by the Sun UK Internet Business team, led by Paul Tarantino, with additional support from Simon Culmer, Director of Sales from the UK executive management team, as well as myself. Here's the official write up, a variety of photos taken and also a selection of video recordings.

Thanks to Rebecca Temple, Manager of Portfolio Marketing at Ariadne, here's a variety of some of the other coverage of the day, much of it focused on the business messages we heard:

Please note that this article was originally written and posted at my blog and I've included it as a guest article here too for those interested in the 'Entrepreneur Country' event. The original article is hosted here: http://blogs.sun.com/eclectic/entry/sun_ariadne_capital_entrepreneur_country

All the best,

Wayne Horkan

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    Sunday Jan 25, 2009

    CloudCamp London #3

    London CloudCamp #3 Logo


    Date: Thursday, March 12, 2009 from 6:45 PM - 10:00 PM (GMT)
    Location: Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, Westminster

    It can also be found in the calendar in the sidebar :-) feel free to subscribe!


    Tuesday Jan 06, 2009

    Cloud Relationship Model

    Hiya All, welcome to my first guest post at Startup Essentials; today I'm going to be talking about the cloud relationship model I've developed and it's use as an artefact when discussing cloud computing.

    I wanted a simply model which I could share with people and use as a discussion point, whilst still capturing the major areas of cloud computing which I considered most pertinent.  I developed a model about six months ago and have since found it useful when talking with people about cloud computing.

    Here's the model and I'll go though it's major elements below.

    Major Cloud Communities

    In the cloud there are three major participants:

    1. the Cloud Providers; building out Clouds, for instance Google, Amazon, etc. Effectivetively technology providers.
    2. the Cloud Adopters / Developers; those developing services over the Cloud and some becoming the first generation of Cloud ISVs.  I have included Cloud "Service" developers and Cloud ISV developers together. This group are effectively service enablers.
    3. Cloud "End" Users; those using Cloud provisioned services, often without knowing that they are cloud provisioned, the most obvious example of which are the multitude of Facebook users who have no idea there favorite FB app. is running on AWS. These are the service consumers.

    I think it's important to talk about these communities because I keep hearing lots about the Cloud Providers, and even more about the issues and 'needs' of the Cloud adopters / developers, but very little in terms of Cloud "End" Users.  In a computing eco-system such as this where "services" are supported by and transverse technology providers, service enablers and service consumers an end to end understanding of how this affects these reliant communities is required. Obvious issues such as SLAs for end users and businesses which rely upon high availability and high uptime from there cloud providers come to mind; however other "ilities" and systemic qualities come to mind such as security, and that's before looking at any detailed breakdown of functional services.

    The point here is that the cloud adopters / developers and interestingly the cloud "watchers" (i.e. the press, media, bloggers and experts) would be mindful to remember the needs and requirements of genuine end users; for myself it'd certainly be invigorating to hear more on this topic area.

    Billing / Engagement Models

    Simon Wardley, a much more eloquent public speaker than myself, does a wonderful pitch which includes a look at the different "as a Service types" which he boils down to being a load of "\*aaS" (very amusing, and informative, try and catch Simon presenting if you can).

    I wholeheartedly agree that there is a large amount of befuddlement when it comes to the differing "\*aaS" types and sub-types, and new ones are springing up relatively frequently, however I also think it's important to not ignore the differences between them.

    For me, and many others, I think first popularised by the "Partly Cloudy - Blue-Sky Thinking About Cloud Computing" white paper from the 451 Group, the differing "\*aaS" variants are identified as billing and engagement models.  That white paper also postulates the five major Cloud Computing provider models, into which the majority of minor "\*aaS" variants fall.  They are:

    1. Managed Service Provision (MSP); not only are you hiring your service from the cloud, you've someone to run and maintain it too.
    2. Software as a Service (SaaS); pretty much ubiquitous as a term and usually typified by Salesforce.com, who are the SaaS poster child.
    3. Platform as a Service (PaaS); the application platform most commonly associated with Amazon Web Services.
    4. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS);
    5. Hosting 2.0

    One of the best breakdowns and visual analysis of this space is the model in Peter Laird's "Understanding the Cloud Computing/SaaS/PaaS markets: a Map of the Players in the Industry" article which is well worth a read.

    Major Architectural Layers

    Also included in the diagram are the major architectural layers that are included in each of the above billing / engagement models offered by the Cloud providers. They are:

    1. Operations; and this really is operations supporting functional business processes, rather than supporting the technology itself.
    2. Service layer; made up of application code, bespoke code, high-level ISV offerings.
    3. Platform layer; made up of standard platform software i.e. app. servers, DB servers, web servers, etc., and an example implementation would be a LAMP stack.
    4. Infrastructure layer; made up of (i) infrastructure software (i.e.virtualisation and OS software), (ii) the hardware platform and server infrastructure, and (iii) the storage platform.
    5. Network layer; made up of routers, firewalls, gateways, and other network technology.

    This rather oversimplifies the architecture, as it's important to note that each of the cloud billing / engagement models use capabilities from each of the above architectural layers; for instance their can be a lot of service simply in managing a network, however these describe the major architectural components (which support the service being procured), not simply ancillary functions, effectively what are the cloud providers customers principally paying for. 

    Delta of Effort / Delta of Opportunity

    This is much more than the 'gap' between the cloud providers and the cloud users, wherein the cloud adopters / developers sit, the gap between the cloud providers and the end cloud users can be called the delta of effort, but also the delta of opportunity.

    It is the delta of effort in terms of skills, abilities, experience and technology that the cloud adopter needs to deliver a functional service to their own “End Users”.  This will be potentially a major area of cost to the cloud adopters. But it's also the delta of opportunity;in terms of 'room' to innovate.

    The more capability procured from the cloud provider (i.e. higher up the stack as a whole), the less you have to do (and procure) yourself.  However the less procured from the cloud provider the more opportunity you have engineer a differentiating technology stack yourself.  This itself has it's disadvantages because the cloud adopters / developers could potentially not realise the true and best value of their cloud providers infrastructure.

    I suspect that there is an optimum level, around the Platform Layer, which abstracts enough complexity away (i.e. you don't have to procure servers, networks, implementation or technology operations staff), but also leaves enough room to innovate and produce software engineered value.  Arguably the only current successful cloud provider, based upon market share, perception, revenue and customer take up, is Amazon Web Services (AWS) who provide a PaaS offering.


    Hope you enjoyed the article, in summary if developing cloud services or even building out a cloud infrastructure I would recommend that you focus on your users and if your a cloud provider, your users' users; remembering that only a certain percentage of those users will be customers (I won't getting into discussing Chris Anderson's 5% recommended conversion rate for the long tail, however I would recommend understanding what some of those calculations might be).

    If you're looking to develop services over the cloud, think carefully about where you and your teams skills lie, and where would you most want them focusing there efforts; working on installing and tuning operating systems and application platforms or writing business value focused applications and services, before choosing at which level to engage with your cloud provider(s).  

    I haven't mentioned enterprise adoption of cloud based services, and that's because I'd like to post that in the near future in a different article.

    Hope you enjoyed the article and all the best,

    Wayne Horkan

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    Monday Nov 17, 2008

    Et votre stockage ?

    Nombre de startups voient leurs besoins en stockage croître plus vite que leurs besoins en puissance de calcul.

    Que ce soit votre cas ou pas, vous avez certainement commencé par stocker vos données sur un système de fichiers qui réside lui-même sur un disque local d'un de vos serveurs, un disque interne au serveur. Mais que faire quand le disque est plein ? Comment utiliser plusieurs disques en gardant un système de fichiers unique afin de ne pas modifier votre application ?

    La possibilité de déployer un système de fichiers sur plusieurs disques a été à l'origine d'une industrie prospère, celle du Volume Management. Des éditeurs proposaient des logiciels propriétaires et payants : un ensemble de disques étaient dédiés à un volume au dessus duquel on pouvait créer un système de fichiers unique. Les disques alloués au volume ne pouvaient pas être partagés avec un autre système de fichiers. Si une partie des disques n'était pas utilisée, elle était perdue.

    ZFS - le Zeta File System de Solaris - est open source et son utilisation est libre. ZFS vous permet de créer un pool de disques - l'équivalent d'un volume - sur lequel vous pouvez créer autant de systèmes de fichiers que vous le souhaité. Vous organisez votre pool comme bon vous semble  - par exemple en mode RAID ou en mirroring pour assurer la sécurité de vos données - et vous pouvez rajouter des disques à la volée, beaucoup de disques, vraiment beaucoup, car ZFS est le premier système de fichiers 128-bit et il peut donc adresser un espace de stockage quasiment illimité si on le ramène à la puissance de calcul des processeurs actuels. Si vous aimez les chiffres, l'espace de stockage est 18 milliards de milliards de fois plus grand qu'avec un système actuel à 64-bit, mais j'avoue que ça ne me parle pas beaucoup.

    En outre, ZFS vous permet de compresser ou d'encrypter vos données à la volée. Quoi d'autre ?

    ZFS vous permet de faire des snapshots - accessibles en lecture uniquement - et des clones - accessibles en lecture et écriture - de chacun des systèmes de fichiers que vous avez créés. Vous pouvez envoyer un snapshot sur une autre machine, pour sauvegarde. Oui, les snapshots peuvent être incrémentaux, et non ils ne consomment pas beaucoup d'espace disque : seules les parties modifiées entre le snapshot et le système de fichier original consomment de la place : tant que les données ne sont pas modifiées elles sont partagées entre le snapshot et son original.

    Mais on ne met pas un nombre infini de disques à l'intérieur d'un serveur. Ce qu'il vous faudrait c'est pouvoir utiliser ZFS sur une baie de stockage.

    Oui et non.

    ZFS peut être utilisé sur une baie, mais il existe aussi des serveurs hybrides - disponibles dans la liste de prix de la communauté Startup Essentials - qui peuvent recevoir 48 disques pour offrir jusqu'à 48 téraoctets de stockage. Et comme ce serveur arrive aussi avec 2 processeurs quad-coeur, il y a de quoi faire tourner votre application. Ceci dit, vous pouvez en faire un serveur dédié au stockage si vous le souhaitez, et faire tourner votre application sur d'autres serveurs.

    Pour ceux qui se sentent à l'étroit avec 48 téraoctets, il existe désormais la famille Sun Storage 7000 avec le modèle 7410 qui peut acceuillir jusqu'à 575 téraoctets de données. De plus, si vous êtes sensibles à la performance des disques, les modèles de la famille 7000 arrivent avec ça :

    C'est un périphérique de stockage SSD (Solid State Drive) qui a les dimensions adaptées pour venir se loger dans l'emplacement d'un disque dur et le remplacer. Quant à la technologie SSD elle est comparable à celle utilisée pour la mémoire de votre téléphone portable ou de votre lecteur mp3.

    En terme de performance, cette technologie exécute les opérations de lecture et d'écriture en quelques microsecondes, ce qui la place entre les disques dures (millisecondes) et la mémoire vive (nanosecondes), et le gain de performance sur les disques dures vient avec une réduction de la consommation électrique : au repos, la consommation d'un périphérique SSD représente 5% de celle de disque dure, et en activité elle représente 15%.

    La bonne nouvelle - pour en revenir à ZFS -  c'est que son architecture "Hybrid Storage Pool" tire automatiquement parti de la technologie SSD puisque ses différents caches (ZIL, ARC) sont placés sur ce type de périphériques.

    Il y a bien d'autres aspects innovants dans la famille 7000, puisque les systèmes de cette gamme arrivent avec une interface utilisateur et un système de monitoring dédiés qui facilitent l'utilisation et l'optimisation du stockage.

    Il se pourrait bien que ZFS et la famille 7000 soient les meilleurs compagnons de la montée en charge de votre stockage.

    Pour en savoir plus, n'hésitez pas à nous rejoindre le 16 décembre, lors du workshop que nous organisons sur la scalabilité. Ce workshop est dédié et réservé aux membres de la communauté Startup Essential, alors ne tardez pas à la rejoindre : l'inscription est gratuite !

    Friday Oct 24, 2008

    Cloud Computing Adoption Is Accelerating!

    IDC just announced it in a press release.: "Cloud Computing is Poised to Capture IT Spending Growth Over the Next Five Years". And the reason is that "The cloud model offers a much cheaper way for businesses to acquire and use IT".

    I'll stop here about the explanations since IDC does a great job at explaining the advantages of Cloud Computing, but now, what can Sun do for you about this?

    We have a complete portfolio of technologies that define the foundation for a cloud. As you know virtualization is the key paradigm for cloud computing, and Sun's technologies allow you to virtualize your complete data center: you can virtualize the compute power (i.e. CPU & RAM) with xVM server or Solaris containers, the storage with ZFS and the Open Storage  initiative, the network and bandwidth with the soon-to-be-released Crossbow project.

    Right, but what does it take to evaluate these technologies, and how to check whether your application runs properly on a cloud? Will it scale without failure?

    Well, I have good news for you and it's named EZstack.

    EZstack is a free online offering that enables you to deploy and test your AMP application on a cloud implemented with the technologies listed above. No need for you to spend time on configuration and installation. The AMP stack is already here, up and running. You install your application and populate MySQL easily with the EZstak web interface, and within a few clicks you test the scalability of the cloud and of your application. Here is a diagram of the infrastrucure that is at your disposal:

    If you want to go a step further, the EZstack cook book helps you to deploy the same infrastructure in your own lab, and for those of you prefer to be hosted by a partner, we are working with some web hosters that will offer hosting services for production that are compatible with EZstack. Stay tune...

    So, how to get an account on EZstack? Simply become a member of the Startup Essentials community - registration is free - and send an email to asksun-ezstack@sun.com !

    Tuesday Oct 21, 2008

    Workshop Startup Essentials: Virtualisation

    Je sors du deuxième workshop de la communauté Startup Essentials où nous avons pu comprendre comment la virtualisation permet d'adresser les problèmatiques de montée en charge et de haute disponibilité pour des applications Web ou SaaS dans une optique cloud computing.

    Avec des technologies telles que Crossbow et le Zeta File System (ZFS) le cloud computing ne se limite plus à dédier de la mémoire vive et de la puissance de calcul à une application ou un client donné : ZFS permet de virtualiser le stockage et Crossbow - aujourd'hui en version beta - permettra de virtualiser le réseau et la bande passante. Quant à la virtualisation elle permet une monté en charge ultra rapide via le déploiement de machines virtuelles sur plusieurs serveurs. En outre, les machines virtuelles permettent d'isoler les utilisateurs les uns des autres puisqu'elles ne communiquent entre elles qu'à travers le réseaux.

    Les contraintes d'une infrastructure de type cloud computing sur le code d'une application sont bien réelles. Certaines applications pourront être déployées sans difficulté, d'autres devront être préalablement modifiées, et il n'est pas toujours évident de savoir si le code d'une application est "cloud computing ready", c'est à dire si les requêtes http  - ou d'un autre type - venant d'un client unique peuvent être ventilées  sur plusieurs instances d'un serveur comme Apache ou Glassfish.

    C'est pour cette raison qu'avec l'aide de Planet-Work nous avons mis au point l'offre EZstack qui permet aux startups de la communauté Startup Essentials de conduire des tests fonctionnels de leur application AMP dans un environnement de type cloud computing: avec cette offre en ligne, vous déployez votre application dans des machines virtuelles où Apache et MySQL sont pré-installés et pré-configurés, vous simulez une monté en charge sur le cloud d'EZstack, et vous testez le comportement de votre application.

    EZstack est donc une véritable offre d'évaluation et de tests et nous continuons à collaborer avec Planet-Work pour compléter cette offre avec une offre d'hébergement pour votre passage en production. Restez en ligne...

    Ci-dessous un schéma de l'infrastructure qu'EZstack met à votre disposition:

    EZstack est une offre gratuite pour les membres de la communauté  Startup Essentials, et si vous n'êtes pas encore membre... l'instription elle-même est gratuite, alors pourquoi s'en priver ?

    Une fois inscrit, il vous suffit d'envoyer un mail à asksun-ezstack@sun.com

    Ci-joint  la présentation du workshop.

    Ah, j'oubliais ! Planet-Work est noté 99,62 par 01net quand la moyenne des hébergeurs dans sa catégorie est à 99,22.

    Wednesday Oct 01, 2008

    Workshop Startup Essentials: Cloud Computing

    Merci de votre participation au premier Workshop Startup Essentials qui s'est tenu dans les locaux de Sun, à Paris.

    Pour la rentrée, nous avions choisi d'aborder le sujet Cloud Computing. Ce fut l'occasion de présenter des initiatives telles que  SocialSite, Project Hydrazine, Project Caroline ou Zembly

    Ce fut aussi l'occasion de comprendre l'importance de la virtualisation que ce soit pour la montée en charge ou pour la haute disponibilité de vos applications Web. Je couvrirai bientôt sur ce blog ce sujet plus en détail.
    Restez en ligne... 

    Vous pouvez récupérer la présentation ici.

    Tuesday Sep 16, 2008

    GUEST POST - SNAGSTA - The best 10 London Networking Events

    By Alex Moore, Snagsta co-founder

    This is an extract from the original post at http://blog.snagsta.com/2008/08/29/londons-best-internet-networking-events/

    So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and set up the next Google. You’re on version 12 of the business plan and you’re trying to make all the numbers add up.
    You can’t get the sums to work but you torture them long enough and they eventually confess.
    Now all you have to do is find partners, programmers, designers, lawyers, accountants and most importantly, investors. Then you have to tell the rest of the world about your idea; blogs and emails are a great way to communicate but there’s nothing quite like getting out there and testing your idea on real, live people.
    You also need to build that all-important network of contacts who will help you make your dream a reality. Without contacts and advocates your idea will not fly, a point reinforced very well by LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman at a recent conference I attended. He said, “Your network is your net worth.”

    So where do you go to make it all happen? You could do worse that try a few (or all) of these London-based gatherings.

    1. DrinkTank
    This one was set up fairly recently from the nice people at Huddle. Unlike other events they are fairly selective about the guest list. The last one I attended was very full, a lot of fun and good for business. No presentations or long speeches - just lots of beer and conversations.

    2. MiniBar
    One of the more informal gatherings on the circuit. Noisy and sometimes difficult to hear what the presenting companies are saying but still worth the trip to this wonderful part of East London. I have met some great people at this one.

    3. Second Chance Tuesday
    These happen infrequently but are excellent. The auditorium where it’s held (The Royal College of Physicians near Regent’s Park) is a great place to actually hear what the speakers are saying. The networking sessions both before and after the interviews in the library is also very well attended.
    One of my favourite events - they should hold them more regularly.

    4. Chinwag
    The best name of any event by far and run by the amiable duo Sam Michel and Deirdre Molloy. This is another panel discussion event so most of the networking is at the end. The topics discussed are always well thought out but the event can be a little hit or miss depending on the quality of the panel members.

    5. Mashup\*Event
    This is a more formal sit-down-and-listen-to-expert type event. I have only been once but learned a lot. The one minute pitches at the end of panel session are fun to watch.

    6. Open Coffee
    Inspired by Saul Klein and the insightful folks at Seedcamp. Takes place every Thursday in West London. I have been 4-5 times and have met a wide variety of people each time. It’s a good place for those who are thinking about taking a leap and becoming an entrepreneur as it’s a rich environment to test out your idea on other people.

    7. Imperial entrepreneurs
    I haven’t been to this one yet but my business partner Phil has been to a couple of these and has seen some excellent speakers present. Student run so takes a long summer break each year.

    8. Facebook Developer Garage London
    I went to one of these a few months ago. Not an event I would rush back to but useful if you’re a developer looking to network with potential clients looking to build applications.

    9. Social Media Café
    I haven’t been to this yet but I plan to get there soon - we’ve heard good things about it.

    10. Bootlaw
    AKA ‘the Danvers and Barry show’ in reverence to Danvers Baillieu and Barry Vitou of the law firm Winston & Strawn. Have yet to attend but it looks like it could be a very useful event for online startups to pick up some free legal advice and meet lots of other fellow entrepreneurs.

    And of course now we are part of the Startup Essential programme we will be going to Stewarts monthly meetings, to network with the rest of the members and dicuss partnerships, drink beer, eat pizza and make the most of Sun's vast network and resources to help us.

    Wednesday May 14, 2008

    Startup focused events, and oh yes a BBQ...

    So its May, normally rainy season in the beautiful country we live in, but hey that means it BBQ time...!!

    So we have lots of events, that Startup Essentials are part of, and want you to be part of to, all focused around Startups and New media, social networking and one just on having fun.


    BEing Digital 


    Being Digital -

    Being-Digital is the digital (Internet, mobile, TV etc.) event of the
    summer - held on the 10th June.


    This one day conference will bring the best digital executives, entrepreneurs and investors in the UK together for one day of discussion and debate around 7 core themes (social, search, advertising, identity, content, location and retail)

    They'll be around 30 cutting-edge demo companies on stage and all day demos of their products and services, to a 200 strong audience, with two major names, helping and compering.

    Do you want to demo ? Why aren't you demoing, is what you should ask ?

    If you are a member of Startup Essentials, you are entitled to a substantial discount off, email me direct to obtain the demo code. (stewart.townsendATsun.com)

    A competition will be run alongside, starting on the 11th June for the best Being-Digital Demo pitch (1 min on stage). The winner will receive free hardware and consultancy from Startup Essentials, and ideas.org

    Places are going very quickly, as expected, so sign up now, as its only around the corner.

    FUEL Conference

    London 13th June 

    Fuel is a brand new, one-day conference designer for entrepreneurs and marketers who want to make their companies, services and products truly remarkable. With insights from leading companies including moo.com, Innocent Drinks and Virgin as well as experts from the web design and development world Fuel will give you the tools to take your business to the next level.

    Again if you are a member of Startup Essentials, a large discount off the entry fee for this one, email me again for more details and the promo code.

    SeedFund Summer BBQ.

    The summer is coming, its going to be a hot, hot, hot one, so what better than a BBQ ! Make sure you get to the SeedFund/Startup Essential BBQ in London, enjoy a free drink and food (subject to usual cashflow of sponsors) and mingle with a relaxed crowd of the uber cool best in the startup scene.

    So you ask what is Seedfund ? It is the platform for the UK's best entrepreneurs, investors and experts (eg: fundraisers) to connect. If you are an entrepreneur, investor or expert then come along and join the informal environment.

    Time and Place
    Thursday, June 19, 2008
    6:00pm - 9:00pm
    Secret Cool Central London Location
    London, United Kingdom


    So lots going on, we have mini-bar as well end of May, Northern Startups happening tonight so join the club now, why should you because...


    Startup Essentials

    So, do you want to buy one of the most highly engineered servers/PC on
    the planet, that can run Windows, Linux or Solaris ?

    Do you want something that has a service team who answer the phone , if
    it were to break ?

    Would you like to be able to build a scaleable application, and get help
    from world class engineers who do that ?

    Would you like all of this for £350 ?

    Come and join the likes of www.last.fm and www.fav.or.it who are
    enjoying the Sunshine at Startup Essentials.

    Sign up to be in the club at http//uk.sun.com/startups 



    Connecting the Startup Essentials community with all the events, information and resources required for them to grow and scale.


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