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My poor blog, you have been neglected for so long.  Six weeks ago I started a new job with another startup, Sparkart!  We do lots of fun stuff and work with leading media properties like linkinpark and Criss Angel.  I’m going to try and get into the swing of things blogging wise and get back to posting interesting technical stuff as I discover it.  But for now it’s a friday night and my computer allowance is all used up.


My brother just launched his first blog today. If you are into sports, particularly West Coast teams you must check it out at Sporting News Blog

I was excited to learn about the launch via Sprout News, a site that lets you create your own social news sites that we launched last month. We now have two hosted social news sites using Sprout News:, an aviation social news site and a companion sight to the sportingnews blog.

Michael Arrington and I

The ThriveSmart Triumvirate (Matt, Jenn and I) were attendees last night at TechCrunch Party 9. The event was great for “pitching practice” and networking with other entrepreneurs. We talked with a bunch of people about ThriveSmart and YouBook; it was also fantastic to reconnect with people from YCombinator. I had great conversations with other founders and look forward to more in the future.

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I came across a post on the Xobni blog that sparked my post neurons. This is an unrelated post but I wanted to thank the muse.

Recently I passed the thirty day mark on my journey as an entrepreneur. To be honest it doesn’t feel like any time has passed, everything has been moving so quickly I can barely tell what day of the week it is. I am only reminded when I try make to interact with people outside of ThriveSmart or try to find dinner at one in the morning and realize it’s a weeknight. By the way, Matt describes the sensation very eloquently with Einstein’s twin paradox[1]. Read More »

Paul Buchheit recently had a post on his blog where he mentioned how terrible it is for founders of a newly formed startup to cut costs by avoiding health insurance. Having recently made the decision to forgo COBRA coverage and seek insurance on my own, I agree whole-heartedly. Today you can pick up vision, medical and dental insurance on your own from many providers for very reasonable rates. I chose VSP for vision because it provides the coverage I need and the UC Berkeley Optometry center (down the street) accepts it. The only downside (this was a very minor one in my opinion) is that you have to pay for VSP for the entire year when you sign up. However at under $200 it is a bargain, and if you are so strapped for cash you can’t afford vision insurance that inexpensive, maybe you should reconsider “starting up”. For Health/Dental insurance I went with Blue Shield of California (Blue Cross and are also options) BSC lets you quote and apply online so you don’t have to wait for business hours[1]. With insurance you have no excuse to not get covered; especially developers. You are already on a computer; go apply for insurance between facebook sessions 🙂

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I’ve finally settled into my place in Berkeley after moving up from San Diego and things have been busy, busy, busy. We have been working on ThriveSmart full time since the boxes were unloaded from the truck; only taking breaks for the occasional trip to the supermarket or power lunch. On Friday we headed into “The City” [1] to have lunch with Jeremy Stoppelman the CEO of Yelp. Listening to Jeremy talk was inspiring and he knows a great place to go for lunch[2] 😉 We talked about Yelp and how they started, how they marketed themselves and what might work for us. I won’t rehash the history of Yelp, but a couple of points stuck with me. Read More »

Matt and I met up in San Francisco for the Facebook F8 Platform launch. (Michael Arrington is here from Techcrunch, check out their coverage for details on facebook’s latest launch.) It will be all over the ‘net soon and the opportunity it gives developers will be awesome. Matt and I left thinking that we need to create a ThriveSmart app that plugs into the new Facebook platform sometime in the future. I will be spending many a late night going through the API after we get the next iteration of YouBook out for general consumption.

Woke up this morning with the fun task of having to unload half the truck in Santa Cruz before heading up to Palo Alto to meet Matt. The bro came down and the two of us unloaded my motorcycle. A big thanks goes out to Tanbeer for the advice on how to pack my motorcycle into the truck, that worked great! The bike is now safely stowed in my parents garage. We continued our freeway adventure sans mustang and met Matt in Palo Alto. After loading “The Desk of Legend” and some other odds and ends we continued up to Berkeley to unload. It took much longer to unload than I thought and by the afternoon we were beat. We returned the truck without incident and proceeded to jump on the freeway to go to my brothers place north of San Francisco, before we hit the 101 motorway we had a flat. Second flat tire I have changed in a month, so I am a professional now. Finally we made it to his place and I watched some TV while he finished a paper. Mom and the little bro came up, we had dinner and then drove back down to Santa Cruz. Tomorrow I will be up in San Francisco for the Facebook F8 platform launch. Until then it is time to sleep.

The time has come to finish loading up the truck and start the drive up to Santa Cruz on day one of the big move. The morning started out early with me waking up Shy and Eric to finish loading the truck so I could get underway by 9 am. I made it up to Dana Point before I hit traffic. Curses to the dudes who got into a fender bender on the freeway and slowed traffic down to argue whose fault it was. I made my first stop in San Fernando at a gas station, first sign of trouble. The trailer with my car on it got stuck on the curb coming into the station. The solution; backup into traffic and go through the other entrance. After filling up I someone managed to get the truck and trailer stuck behind the gas station (I almost hit some dude who didn’t notice I was backing up). A big thanks to the guy in the green Tahoe who helped me get “unstuck” so I could jump back on the freeway.

The Penske truck was easy to drive and had two power connections. I’ve been listening to my iPod from SD all the way up to Santa Cruz (nice 11.5 hour trance session).

I finally arrived in Santa Cruz and all I can do is call my brother to help me move tomorrow and pass out. Tomorrow we continue the trek up to Berkeley.

A big thank you to everyone who made it to one of the three days of going-away events, that marked the end of the San Diego chapter of my life. We started things off at La Jolla Brewhouse on Thursday and ended Thursday night / started Friday morning off with a bang (thanks Eric & Shy). Friday was my last trip to On Broadway for a while: thanks Irene, Kevin, David, Shy, Eric, Boramy and the GoGo dancers from the trance room for coming out and helping me celebrate. The finale on Saturday was great, a little no-limit hold ’em before the big move. Again thanks to everyone who came out, it was great, we’ll have to do it again some time.