Archive for the ‘high altitude’ tag
Allen & Co.’s Sun Valley retreat definitely wins the prize for “Most Ironic Conference” as it is a media conference that very vehemently shuns media. Just this morning one intrepid reporter was told to stop harassing the guests as she walked down the rainy thoroughfare with her friend who also happened to be an attendee (and, no, it wasn’t me).
My boss and guest Tim Armstrong technically isn’t allowed to talk to me about anything that isn’t smalltalk (Hi Tim!). Really.
Founded by Allen & Co. in 1983, the off-the-record CEO conference takes place 6,000 feet above sea level in Idaho, at the storied Sun Valley Resort and its iconic bar Duchin, which has the best bar name ever if you pronounce it a certain way.
Every summer bigwigs like Mark Zuckerberg and Drew Houston convene at Duchin to share high-altitude drinks (or at least a drinking space) with the likes of Harvey Weinstein, Oprah, Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Bob Iger and Tim Cook. Press are also not allowed to go into the bar at a certain time, in case that wasn’t clear.
Because all these rich people are
hungry for fresh blood interested in innovation, traditionally Allen & Co. wrangles a group of humble, rising star CEOs to the Gem state, inviting three or four promising startup founders to come and give a 15 minute presentation for the olds. They call it the “New Breed Program” and it’s such a pure, brilliant form of lead generation.
Last year it was Quora, Airbnb and Dropbox. The year before that it was Square, Groupon, Pandora and The Fancy (as thingD). But once you’re in the club you’re in the club. Many of the past presenters return as legit attendees.
This year’s “New Breed” includes Uber, Evernote and more modest startups (in terms of press coverage at least) like neighborhood social network Nextdoor and Hadoop shop Cloudera. The startups will each hit the stage for their close up on Saturday morning, starting at 7:30am.
All of the companies in attendance this summer had also presented earlier this year at the bank’s private company conference in Arizona. There were eight startups in total presenting, divided into “Consumer Internet” and “Enterprise.”
According to a source, photosharing darling (who was also my pick for Allen & Co’s New Breed this year) Instagram actually joined Evernote, Uber and Nextdoor on the consumer internet track in March. According to the same source they weren’t invited to the summer conference, most likely because their acquisition put the kibosh on any further dealings with Allen & Co., who has a pretty effective system going on here you have to admit …
Get ‘em while they’re young.
Google rolled out a new version of its Google Earth software that replaces the patchy, quilt-like mapping graphics with a smoother, more cohesive update.
“The Google Earth globe is made from a mosaic of satellite and aerial photographs taken on different dates and under different lighting and weather conditions. Because of this variance, views of the Earth from high altitude can sometimes appear patchy,” wrote Google Earth Project Manager Peter Birch in a blog post yesterday.
The new way of rendering makes the mapping graphics look far more like a single image, complete with textures and shading. It really looks like something that came out of a movie — so much so that when I typed in and address I checked my audio setting to find out why the music wasn’t playing. (And then I realized this wasn’t an episode of Planet Earth.)
The update also includes sharing integration with Google’s social network Google+. You can now easily share a screenshot of any Google Earth view by clicking a button in the upper right hand corner of the window. This could be pretty useful when giving directions since it’s a little more dynamic than the standard Google Maps street view feature.
The new update is available now on both the mobile and desktop versions of Google Earth, which you can download on the official app page.