What Mark Zuckerberg said that bugged Mitch Kapor

Iphone

Yesterday at the Startup School (a freaking awesome event for entrepreneurs, by the way) I was sitting next to Mitch Kapor while Facebook founder/CEO Mark Zuckerberg was on stage. The picture above is of Startup School hearing from Zynga CEO Mark Pincus, who gave a great talk. More on that in a second.

At one point Mark said something that made Mitch flinch.

What was it?

Mark said that one of the best decisions he made was to move Facebook out of Boston and into Silicon Valley. Then he said that the business infrastructure here was key and that he couldn’t have gotten that infrastructure anywhere else.

Why did that make Mitch flinch? Well, Mitch started Lotus in Boston, which was a highly successful company (Mitch, in his own speech, told about his experiences starting Lotus). But since then has Boston been able to keep a great tech startup and help it get to the big time?

No. That’s why only I saw Mitch’s reaction and why Mitch didn’t call Mark on it.

As to Mark Pincus’ talk, the recording is on Justin.tv and he explained how he wanted to build an “Internet Treasure.” He already has, his company has built Farmville which is a VERY popular game on Facebook.

Other talks worth watching from Startup School? Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos talking about how he delivers happiness.

Evan Williams and Biz Stone telling stories about starting Twitter.

Thanks to YCombinator for inviting me to Startup School. I learned a lot and the networking was over the top.

85,000 reasons why Apple's iPhone isn't going to be disrupted

There’s nothing geeks love more than to argue mobile phone platforms. Here’s Matt Blaisdell saying that apps weren’t key to iPhone’s success. That’s true, but now that Apple has apps the world has changed and challengers to the iPhone will find it very tough.

Here’s why: everyone is using a different set of 20 apps. Trillions of combinations. You can see this on Appsfire’s VIP list (my iPhone apps are listed there, along with a number of others). None of us have the same set of apps.

So, to get me off of the iPhone you are going to have to duplicate all my apps (and I’ve gotten several more since doing this list a couple of weeks ago).

Here, let’s play a game. Let’s say that a Chinese manufacturer ships an Android phone that makes me hot and bothered. Something, say, that’s half the thickness of the iPhone, has a screen that’s sharper, and the battery lasts twice as long, oh, and let’s just say it costs $50 less than buying an iPhone.

Would it get me to switch away from my iPhone? Probably not, truth be told. (I do have a second SIM, though, waiting, just in case that I use to test phones).

Why not?

Because I’ve grown addicted to Tweetie. So, now you’ll have to build an app, or get a third-party developer to build an app that works better. Let’s say you do that.

But do you have my favorite game? Tap Tap Revenge?

Do you have Facebook? Do you have Photoshop? Just today NASDAQ came out with a cool new app. Do you have that? And so on and so forth.

Every app is lockin.

I’m not going to be switching anytime soon, and neither are you.

So, what the other manufacturers are hoping is that enough users remain ignorant of all the uses of the apps and that they get enough of them built either by themselves (not gonna happen) or by developers outside the company before Apple just locks in everyone.

Joe Wilcox, on Twitter, says that iPhone users are “beyond reason.”

No, Joe, I just want my Kindle app on Android before I’ll switch. I have lots of books that I’ve invested in that I can read on my iPHone.

Or, I want my TripIt app on Android or Nokia before I’ll switch. My entire flight information is stuck inside there.

Or, I want to watch Leo Laporte’s show this afternoon (or more accurately, listen to it on my Prius thanks to UStream’s app).

Or I want to use Yelp’s app to find a great restaurant.

Etc. Etc. Etc.

If you get me all those, and all the other 85,000 apps, but on a device that is sexier and more fun to use (and more productive) then I’ll definitely be reasonable and switch.

Until then I have 85,000 reasons to be unreasonable. Oh, did you see this app called “RedLaser?” You point your phone at barcodes, and it gives you information about the products you are looking at, including what the price is on Amazon.com. Very cool.

Now I’m sure you’ll say you have an app like RedLaser on your device, right? (I’ve seen similar on Nokia devices, for instance) But do you have all the others I use?

Yes, I’m unreasonable. Let me know when I can stop being unreasonable! :-)

Oh, and I met the guy who runs the iPhone app team (he asked to remain anonymous) and he told me his team approves hundreds of new apps every day. So, that’s HUNDREDS of new reasons every day that I will remain unreasonable. Sorry to Nokia, Palm, Microsoft, RIM, and all the other players.