Brad's Books and Organizations

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Hi, I’m Brad Feld, a managing director at the Foundry Group who lives in Boulder, Colorado. I invest in software and Internet companies around the US, run marathons and read a lot.

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Gluecon Year 5

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As we enter the 5th year of Gluecon, I’m very excited to see it come together. Eric Norlin has been saying year after year that his goal is to make Gluecon “the most technical, developer-focused conference” out there and I love watching him try.

You can check out the most recent agenda here, but some of the sessions that are indicative of what Eric’s talking about include:

  • Building a distributed data platform with Node.js, Storm, Kafka, and ZeroMQ
  • An Enterprise Mobile Reference Architecture
  • Building using Netflix’s Open Source Architecture (a 4 hour workshop)
  • Using Swagger to Build a Great API Interface
  • The Pros and Cons of Choosing Go
  • Availability During Cloud Outages: Multi-Regional, Self-Healing MySQL
  • Node.js is for APIs

Beyond the content, I can personally testify that you’ll find an amazing group of people to hang out with, a truly welcoming atmosphere, and the best conference wifi you’ll find anywhere. Plus, it’s in Boulder at the beginning of summer!

Be sure to grab the early bird price (which ends April 7th) while you can — and use “brad12″ to take an additional 10% off.

Entrepreneurs Unplugged – Tuesday 1/29 Interview of Jeremy Bloom (Integrate)

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Jeremy BloomTomorrow night (Tuesday, 1/29) I’ll be doing another Entrepreneurs Unplugged – this time I’ll be interviewing Jeremy Bloom, the co-founder of Integrate.

We are investors in Jeremy’s company which is doing extraordinarily well. Jeremy has been a total joy to work with and has an amazing story. If you recognize his name, “olympic ski champion”, “college football star”, and “NFL football player” may come to mind. He’s also the founder of a dynamite non-profit called Wish of a Lifetime.

We’ll be at the  University of Colorado Law School, Room 101 from 6:15 – 7:45 PM with a reception to follow.

Register to join us for a fun and interesting evening.

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Defrag and Blur 2012

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Defrag and Blur are only two weeks away, and if you’re not yet registered to come, you should find a way. Why?

1. Makerbot will be there with the Replicator 2 in hand. And is there anything cooler than 3D printing right now?

2. The agenda is absolutely incredible — Kevin Kelly, Jeff Ma, Rachel Happe, Paul Kedrosky, Bre Pettis, Andrew Tschesnok.

3. The networking will be intimate and awesome, as usual.

You’ll see and interact with everything from social business software to big data stuff to robots to 3D printers to augmented reality.

If you’re a student, use the Defrag Student Scholarship and special Blur student tickets to get into both events.

If you’re not a student, use “ejnvip” to take 25% off of your Defrag registration , and if you’d like to come to Blur — use the super secret handshake code of “bifr12″ to take 60% off of your blur registration (shhhh)….

Don’t miss it!

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Standing Ovation Before The Speaker Begins

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A few weeks ago at Thinc Iowa I noticed the tradition they had of giving a standing ovation to the speaker when the speaker took the stage. I had never seen that before and thought it was awesome. Speakers also got a standing ovation after their talk. As someone who does a lot of public talks, the first sixty seconds of warming up a room are often awkward (even if well executed) and the standing ovation at the beginning eliminated all of this for me.

I just spent an awesome day at the EO Entrepreneurs Masters Program 20th Anniversary. This program started out as Birthing of Giants 20 years ago and had a profound impact on me when I was 25 years old and running Feld Technologies. We were 12 people at the time and were just at the $1 million annual revenue minimum for applying. It was the first time I had really found my peer group and it helped me understand the value of peers and mentoring at a very young age. It also resulted in me getting involved in Young Entrepreneurs Organization, starting the Boston and Colorado chapters, and serving on the YEO board for several years. As icing on the cake, I met Verne Harnish, who became a good friend, was the only person I knew when Amy and I moved to Boulder, and has continued to have an amazing impact on a huge number of entrepreneurs over the 20 years since I first met him.

I was on a panel with a few of my colleagues from that first Birthing of Giants class that graduated in 1992. The room was full of warmth and there was no awkwardness, plus I was the last person on the panel to talk. Our assignment from Verne was to discuss several profound life moments and try to work the notion of “a billion” into the examples as one of the themes of this year’s class was “a billion.” The audience of 500 was engaged for our entire panel (which is a big deal for anyone who has ever sat on a panel as they can be soul crushing experiences to sit and watch people disconnect in the audience – well – reconnect with their iPhones – while disconnecting from the panel.

We got a standing ovation and the end which caused me to flash back to the Thinc Iowa event and made me wonder why the tradition of giving a standing ovation at the beginning hasn’t taken off. I hope Eric Norlin incorporates it for Defrag and Blur – it so changes the ton of the transition from speaker to speaker in a powerful and positive way.

Defrag Version 6 – Early Bird Registration Special

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In approximately seven weeks, Defrag will be happening again. It’s the sixth incarnation of Defrag, and over time it seems to have become an annual Fall rite of passage.

This year’s Defrag is no different: an intimate gathering and great conversations. Speakers like Kevin Kelly (founder of Wired Magazine), Jeff Ma (inspiration for the movie, “21”), Bre Pettis (of Makerbot), and many, many others. Topics like mobile development, identity management, social business, big data, and APIs.

One key difference with this year’s Defrag, though, is the addition of Blur. Defrag and Blur will overlap for half a day. This means that in three days time, you can get the experience of Defrag, and then stick around for robots, 3D printing and all kinds of cool HCI stuff at Blur. Two shows in three days in one place. (Note: we’ll also be having the Boulder is for Robots meeting at Blur, and opening up some “hacking space” to build stuff.)

In short, you should plan to be at Defrag and Blur (November 14-16). Early Bird registration expires this Friday, and “brad12” takes an additional 10% off. See you there!

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