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Lunchwalla Checks-In at Foursquare Not Gowalla

MOD 595230 FoursquareIntegration 490x410 Lunchwalla Checks In at Foursquare Not Gowalla

For awhile I thought Lunchwalla which we featured not so long ago was related to Gowalla. So, It was quite surprising to know that the site which lets you organize everyday social events like breakfast, lunch, dinner, movies and more has integrated with Foursquare. So this means that aside from voting in on what to do, you can now check-in when you get to the events you helped organized.

If you’re a regular Foursquare user and have also used Lunchwalla before, this integration would complement each other now. Meaning, all the check-ins you make on the events you organized or helped organized through Lunchwalla will be counted to your quest for mayorship of the place where the event was held. This is in addition to the fact that your check-in appears on your Foursquare profile which you can also display as an update to your Facebook profile. It’s like hitting three social networking sites with one check-in.

Best of all, if you’ve got hooked into Lunchwalla since we’ve featured it on this blog, you must be earning Lunchwalla points right now.  Of course, you still remember that those Lunchwalla points can earn you some schwags from participating merchants, right?

And while we’re at it, the Foursquare – Lunchwalla integration also lets you import your Foursquare friends into your Lunchwalla contacts list. So, planning events and coordinating them with your friends is now easier.

Incidentally, Lunchwalla is holding a gig right now which might earn you free tickets to see Iron Man 2. So, if you haven’t checked Lunchwalla yet, this gig might entice you to start using Lunchwalla.

Lunchwalla Answers the Question – “What’s for Lunch?”

Frankly, the first thing that came into my mind when I stumbled upon new social media site Lunchwall was the location-aware social media site Gowalla. Not only does these two services’ names sound alike but somehow they offer similar services.

Gowalla is a social recommendation site of sorts, built upon crowd sourced experience when visiting restaurants and other places of interest. Lunchwalla on the other hand is also banking on the social aspect, this time of planning gigs and events by group of people or network of friends.

Basically, Lunchwalla answers the most pressing daily question – “What’s for lunch?”  The site is for coordinating events at millions of eating and drinking establishments with friends, colleagues and family. Don’t get me wrong here, you can also use Lunchwalla for organizing breakfast, dinner, drinks and other gatherings. It is not just limited to lunch events.

From the official press release – Lunchwalla changes social planning by combining reviews, reservations, menus and local coupons into one site that lets friends, colleagues and family vote on where to go.  It aims to cut down cost on sending text messages the hazzle of calling back-and-forth just to finalize on where your friends would be holding your next small gathering.

To find out whether Lunchwalla suits your needs, you can check out the site at http://lunchwalla.com and register to join. You can create a new account or use your Facebook login credential to start planning your next lunch gig.

Lunchwalla is currently web-based service only. Although I’m pretty sure a mobile application is already under way.

Screen shot 2010 03 09 at 5.28.17 AM 490x205 Lunchwalla Answers the Question   Whats for Lunch?

Via Market Wire

PleaseRobMe Hits on FourSquare, Other Location-Aware Services

Screen shot 2010 02 18 at 5.27.18 AM 490x238 PleaseRobMe Hits on FourSquare, Other Location Aware Services

A new site called Please Rob Me is getting some media mileage not only because of its intriguing name but also because of its equally intriguing purpose.  Please Rob Me describes its goal as follows:

The goal of this website is to raise some awareness on this issue and have people think about how they use services like Foursquare, Brightkite, Google Buzz etc. Because all this site is, is a dressed up Twitter search page (link). Everybody can get this information.

So, what does the site actually does? Well, controversial as well. It compiles and lists down all the status updates published on FourSquare and perhaps soon other location-aware services as well, that pertains to individuals saying that they are about to leave their homes to go somewhere else. These are posted on the site and on Twitter.

While Please Rob Me’s goal is unquestionably noble, the way it is pushing things to achieve this goal is not. Raising the level of awareness of the public over some dangerous matters is a good feat, but actually giving the would-be perpetrators an idea about this whole thing is certainly not commendable.

The site posts those updates on their Twitter account for all its followers to see and monitor.   They say that FourSquare, Gowalla and the others are just dressed up Twitter where updates live links that anyone can click through and access.

But the thing is, those location-aware service still give users the options to set up their privacy settings and control who among their contacts they would allow access to their updates. So, I guess location-aware services are still safe, just like Twitter.

Social Search Engine Aardvark Joins Google

googlevark 490x201 Social Search Engine Aardvark Joins GoogleWhenever I’m looking for an answer to a trivial question I normally type in the question on the Google search box. Yes, that’s how lazy I am. And so far Google search results are pretty much accurate and were able to give me some good links. Interstingly, most of the links to the answers given by Google are entries from Yahoo! Answers.

The point I’m trying to drive at here? Google badly needs a Yahoo Answers-like service. A crowd-sourced database of information that is of capable providing the best answer to the most mundane question that could possibly come up from anyone’s mind. And Google seems to be embarking on achieving that feat. To start off, it just acquired a social search engine called – Aardvark.

Aardvark’s model is pretty simple, you ask a question and Aardvark will find the perfect person to answer your question in minutes. Aardvark has several interfaces, via an iPhone app, IM, email and of course its web interface at vark.com.

Aardvark’s technology taps into the knowledge and experience of your friends and extended network of contacts. It analyzes your questions and determines what they are about until it is able to match each question to people who are knowledgeable about it to give you the final answer to your question. And it does that as quickly as it can.

Google has not announced yet how it is going to take to integrate Aardvark to its various products and services, but as soon as the deal was finalized, Google quickly put Aardvark into Google Labs.

With Google Buzz as a social sharing site and now this social search engine, Google is really getting into the social game.

Everybody Counts on Vevo to Salvage What is Left of the Music Video Industry

Pardon the momentary glitch a couple of hours after its official launch, but Vevo is up and running right now (if you’re in the U.S. at least since the site is not available in most countries). And judging by the way its launch gig went and the support it is getting from major industry players including music artists, it looks like Vevo is headed for big time success.

What if you have Bono, Lady Gaga, John Meyer, Mariah Carey  and Adam Lambert promoting it? Plus Google’s Eric Schmidt  allowing all views of Vevo videos on YouTube to be attributed to Vevo? It’s a clear shot to video site stardom, right?  It looks like Vevo might become the no.3 video site next to YouTube and Hulu perhaps.

Vevo executives expect their site to get more than 400 million video views in the site’s first month of operation. While Mariah hopes Vevo can help salvage something that used to be amazing. Advertisers are joining in as well with the likes of AT&T, McDonalds and other industry players coming on board.

Could Vevo give Hulu a run for its money? Only time can tell. What Vevo needs to do right now is to prepare its site for unsurmountable traffic in the days to come and avoid downtimes as much as possible because that will somehow determine the site’s future.

I Can Haz Blog Empire

The man who bought out I Can Haz Cheeseburger is slowly building one of the best content empires on the web.

i has minions 300x225 I Can Haz Blog Empire

“The privately held company was launched in 2007 when Mr. Huh acquired I Can Haz Cheezburger; since then he’s built it through acquisitions (Failblog in 2008) and launches (It Made My Day), into a network of 30 blogs visited by 11.5 million people a month. Failblog’s video site just passed CBS as the 7th most-viewed channel of all time on YouTube. It now has 21 full-time employees and five part-timers and is profitable, though Mr. Huh wouldn’t discuss specifics.”

I love hearing these kinds of success stories although having seen the industry from all sides I don’t envy anyone having to run this type of machine. It’s a hard life that requires a lot of work and lots of tough decisions especially in this digital economy. But Ben Huh has done a marvelous job building an impressive empire of hilarious sites.

Source: Ad Age

Angels Want Startups To Pay To Pitch

Jason Calacanis get’s it right when he says that Angels shouldn’t be asking Startups for cash for the time to pitch to them. First off Angels have the cash, and the time to listen to startups, and if they don’t have the time they shouldn’t ask startups to pay.

jason calacanis Angels Want Startups To Pay To Pitch

Jason Calacanis says it a lot better than I can, and in a rare moment I really agree with him on this.

I’ve been in the startup scene since 1994 and in those 15 years I’ve met, interviewed — and in some cases, pitched — the most powerful investors in technology. None of them have ever charged me a dime for doing so.
Why? BECAUSE THEY ARE RICH!

It’s low-class, inappropriate and predatory for a rich person to ask an entrepreneur to PAY THEM for 15 minutes of their time. Seriously, what is the cost to the party hearing the pitch? If you answered “nothing” or “the cost of two cups of coffee” you win the prize!

Diverse investments boost VC funding in 2007

Many startups were blessed last year with more investments from venture capitalists. According to a news article, the total money raised in 2007 grew by 10.8% or equivalent to $29.4 billion, the most in the last six years.

While software, medical devices and biotech firms receive the chunk of investments in the past, the year 2007 showed a balance growth for the financial support were laid out in other growing industries such as telecoms, media and energy. It means a bubble burst is not expected at this point and that there are “interesting deals to be found across many sectors”.

Moreover, the VC firms in Washington state or Northwest raised $1.3 billion last year, making 2007 the best investment year in the area since 2000. Diversity was also quite evident as the investment shares of traditional sectors including software and medical devices fell. On the flip side, telecoms, media and entertainment have gained increased funding.

Winners of Crunchies 2007 announced

crunchies Winners of Crunchies 2007 announcedCrunchies 2007 is like the Oscars for the best startups, Internet and technology innovations. It is a joint effort of popular sites TechCrunch, GigaOM, Read/Write/Web and VentureBeat.

After tallying more than 100,000 votes, the following companies have emerged victorious in the following categories:

Best Overall: Facebook
Best Technology Innovation/Achievement: Earthmine
Best Clean Tech Startup: Tesla Motors
Best video startup: Hulu
Best user-generated content site: Digg
Best mobile start-up: Twitter
Best International startup: Netvibes
Best consumer startup: Meebo
Best enterprise startup: Zoho
Best design: SmugMug
Best new gadget/ device: Apple iPhone
Best business model: Zazzle
Best bootstrapped startup: Techmeme
Best Startup Founder: Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook)
Best Startup CEO: Toni Schneider (Automattic)
Best new startup: iMedix
Most likely to succeed: Automattic (WordPress)
Best use of viral marketing: StumbleUpon
Best time sink site: Kongregate

The Entrepreneur Challenge starts today

The Entrepreneur Challenge, a collaborative competition to discover tomorrow’s best innovative ideas and startups, officially begins today. The endpoint of this contest is to connect online startups and investors easily.

Powered by spigit, the only platform that combines prediction markets, social networking, bulletin boards, a reputation system, and staffing capabilities, this contest invites online entrepreneurs to share their ideas, business plans, leadership teams, and network with investors worldwide.

spigit The Entrepreneur Challenge starts today

“Spigit’s Entrepreneur Challenge is the first online platform competition that will truly give an insider’s view on the funding process. The capabilities of outsiders, insiders and experts to engage in discussion and push one company ahead of another is the true meaning of Web 2.0 technology at work,” said Adam Hirsch, Mashable Community & Marketing Director

This prestigious and life-changing contest is backed by major big companies like Keiretsu Forum Socal, Sun Microsystems, Southwest Airlines, Killer Startups, Lithespeed, LaunchSquad, and Mashable.

The top 6 startups will have access to many opportunities not commonly available to ordinary startups. Keiretsu will allow them to pitch their plans to the angel investment community, Sun to provide hardware, travel courtesy of Southwest, and strong online exposure from Mashable, a popular social networking news site.