Oct 14

The Next Twitch.tv

Let’s start with a confession; I like to watch video games. Even when I was a kid, I preferred watching my friends to playing myself. In a fighter plane I’d be the the navigator.

It is rare for me to be on the front edge of a consumer trend since my hobbies tend to be pretty geeky. But when Twitch TV came along, I was an early adopter; I had already watched hours of gameplay videos on YouTube.

A while back someone wrote a piece about unbundling YouTube in which they stated that Twitch.tv was the first step. (Sadly, I can’t remember who wrote it, and my Google Fu was not up to the challenge of finding it.) My thought is that an obvious next step is “haul videos”.

Shopping haul

Haul videos are when people unpack their shopping and show their followers what they purchased. A subset of the haul video is unboxing, where the host unboxes anything from high-end tech gadgets to cheap toys. The New York Times Magazine has an article about a woman who is making millions unboxing Disney toys.

Clearly people love this content, and YouTube isn’t designed with this in mind. There are such obvious ways to monetize and brands should be all over this. I’d love to see someone create a site for this niche since I think it will be huge once it goes mainstream

May 14

Startup Memes: Github for X

<I actually wrote this several weeks ago, but then life got in the way. I think it is still relevant.>

This is the first in a (hopefully) recurring theme of posts discussing patterns I’m seeing in startup companies.

For the past few months I’ve seen a number of companies that can be described as Github for X. Basically an open storage platform where people can fork off projects. While I’ve seen a bunch of others, some good examples are:

Partly this is probably due to Githubs big fundraise. But another aspect is probably that coders are starting to branch out to other domains and they are trying to bring their tools with them.

Back in the dark ages we used RCS & CVS to track source changes. They were hard to use in teams and didn’t scale well to the Internet. Today we have incredibly powerful tools with integrated sharing platforms.

For those who’ve used these tools with a distributed team you know how powerful they can be. It is only natural that people will want to bring them to other domains.