Brad's Books and Organizations

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Books

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Organizations

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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Google I/O Panel on VCs Who Code

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The video from the second panel I was on at Google I/O 2010 – Technology, innovation, computer science, & more: A VC panel – is up.  Dick Costolo – the COO of Twitter – is the moderator and my fellow panelists are Albert Wenger, Chris Dixon, Dave McClure, and Paul Graham.  Someone didn’t like the title so it was renamed “VCs Who Code” but apparently that didn’t stick with the official event panel namers.

 

While I stopped writing production code in the early 1990’s, I still fuck around with something each summer when I’m in Alaska (in past years it has been Perl, Ruby, and PHP.)  I haven’t decided what it is going to be this year, but it’ll probably be Python as I’m seriously considering taking 6.189 using MIT OpenCourseWare.

For the curious ones in the crowd, I’m a self declared “excellent BASIC programmer.”  When I got my Apple ][ in 1979 the only choices were BASIC and 6502 Assembler.  I learned each, but only wrote commercial software on the IBM PC in BASIC (and compiled BASIC, back when getting a BASIC program to compile was a trick in and of itself) between 1983 and 1985 (using Btrieve as the database manager.)  By 1986 I was doing a lot more work in Dataflex and Pascal.  At MIT, I learned Scheme (via 6.001) and was ok with it, but never did any production work with LISP even though every time I looked at a Symbolics machine I drooled.  I learned a handful of other languages in school, such as CLU and IBM System/370 Assembler (and something on a Prime computer – I can’t remember what) but never used any of it outside a class.  Feld Technologies did most of its work with Clarion, although I never really learned it well enough to do anything production quality since by that point I wasn’t coding regularly anymore.  While I was proficient with a bunch of database languages such as dBase, Paradox, and R:Base, I never liked any of them and we never really wrote production systems in them (although we took over and managed a lot of crap that other people had tried to write.)  Oh – and I was pretty good with Lotus 1-2-3 Macros.

In some parallel universe, I sit in front a computer all day and write code.

Google I/O 2010 Panel on Making Freemium Work

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A few weeks ago I was on two panels at Google I/O 2010.  The video from one of them – Making Freemium work – converting free users to paying customers is up.  Don Dodge from Google is the moderator and my fellow panelists are Dave McClure, Jeff Clavier, Matt Holleran, and Joe Kraus.  It’s 60 minutes long, but we covered a lot of ground.

Google I/O and Glue Conference Up Next

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Early tomorrow morning, I’m heading out to San Francisco to spend two days at Google I/O 2010.  I love technical conferences – the Google I/O 2010 agenda looks killer.  I’m also on two panels – they’ve invited some VCs who code to participate in Technology, innovation, computer science, & more: VC panel moderated by standup comedian Twitter COO Dick Costolo and Making Freemium work – converting free users to paying customers moderated by Microsoft evangelist Google Developer Advocate Don Dodge.

Then, next week I’m spending two days in Boulder (well – Broomfield, but close enough) at the second annual Glue Conference.  The agenda is also killer, is built around the Foundry Group’s Glue theme (e.g. it’s super relevant to us), and has a superb list of sponsors who will be attending and participating.  Did I say the agenda was killer?  The amazing thing about Glue is that the speakers are part of the conference – part of the reason we have it in Boulder is to drive deep multi-day engagement amount all attendees (speakers, attendees, and sponsors).  Eric Norlin, who created Glue (and Defrag, and Blur) is a master at creating these types of specialty conferences.

I know many of my friends will be at both and I’m looking forward to seeing a lot of folks that I have mostly an email relationship with.  While you can’t get into Google I/O anymore, Glue is still open for registration.  And Eric has set up a discount code of “googleio” for 10% off the conference price.  Finally, to all my local Boulder and Denver friends that have been thinking about coming, your cost is about a round trip plane flight to the bay area and a night at a hotel, except this time everyone is coming to you.  So come out and play!

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