Interesting New Tech Blog for your Radar Screen

Posted on Jan 5, 2012 | 43 comments

Interesting New Tech Blog for your Radar Screen

Over the holiday I became aware of a new tech blog that aims to have deep insights into the next generation of technology, which they call The Hypernet.

Why should you care?

Well, it is established by some of the industries more successful investors – Mike Maples and Roger McNamee.

My favorite post was this one (image above) in which they talked about their 10 hypothesis for technology investing.

It maps to a lot of my own views so I was interested to learn more. If you click through to Roger & Mike’s blog you’ll see that this blog post then links to a detailed presentation on the topic.

The ones I focus on the most are 2-7 and 10.

Hope you enjoy it. And I hope they keep up their early momentum.

  • Scott Simko

    I haven’t seen you endorse a Tech Blog before so I’ll be sure to check it out.

  • Grooblin

    Very informative, instant bookmark. Thanks Mark!
    I’m intested in 1-7. Our current data representation paradigm is a failure.I think the “Next Web Architecture” represents a major shift in the way we make use of (contextual) information to design user experiences. We may see the rebirth of the very concept of “data” itself.

  • BestJohnD

    I knew you’d like #10. Someone *needs* to pick up that “torso” segment.
    Thanks for the link, will keep an eye on it.

  • Tony Mariotti

    Looking at #10, I wonder if this could be a new opportunity for Tivo to reinvent itself?

  • Jmartens

    great find, thanks for sharing. added to my reader!

  • Dan Bowen

    “10 Hypotheses” is a must read presentation…refreshing to see someone else talk about 5+ year outlook as well. 

    1) Agree completely on HTML5, it can do nothing but disrupt existing empires and force change.
    2) I personally believe Microsoft is a dark horse who challenges Apple in the next couple of years if Win 8 works…Phone, Gaming, Desktop, Tablet – continuity across platforms would be powerful.
    3) Agree completely that the first wave of social is over, however I think Facebook isn’t as perfect as many believe.  Just because I’m a WinPho7 user and Facebook is always connected doesn’t mean I’m “engaged.”  Facebook engagement for married, working parents is vastly different than the 18-25 demographic.  They may maintain 800M accounts, but defining engagement must be better scrutinized.  Most social fanbois forget that half the mobile market is over 30 years old and their use of FB is vastly different than those younger, unmarried and without kids.

    4) Couldn’t agree more on TV/Internet – I get news from the web, show’s from Hulu (and others) and after all…why do I need a cable box when I’ve got Cat6 in the back of the TV and 60+ Mbps download speeds?  Would love to hear of a TV with an Intel Core i7 coming out of CES this year so everyone would get the hint a little quicker.

  • Danielgold

    We are part of the hypernet ..  We provide wireless internet to the home and business at speeds comparable to fibre and costs comparable to cable and DSL. Company is close to break even. Company can scale to an unlimited # of users. Tomorrow we will be able increase the current maximum speed (100 Mbps) on the network to gigabit speeds. The answer is not LTE/4g the answer is what we are doing and we need advisory and capital. contact Daniel Gold for more information . 613.552.5505

  • Matt Hall

    I agree with everything except #2 here. Microsoft has had such sad execution problems that I can’t imagine them pulling it together now. And that’s said while acknowledging windows phone 7 is great, they just didn’t get it done in time to matter it seems. Windows 8 won’t matter either, the developers have moved on for the most part.

  • Jeff Yoak

    I liked it as well, but do you really think that is a 5+ year outlook?  Over my tech career, one of the most remarkable things is the shortening of the horizon we can really consider.  It feels more and more to me as though you can be really insightful today just understanding deeply what is happening today.  Most of that stuff is nascent already.  Tablets are disruptive?  Sure, most of the disruption is yet to come, but it is being done now and you see it from inside.

    This is by no means a criticism of the work.  I think Mark nails it in saying they are aiming for deep understanding and they don’t do a bad job.  It is just that 30 years ago it might have been possible to look ahead 10 years in many respects.  I’m not sure you could do a good job at 5+ years 5 years ago.  It is getting more and more extreme.  What a fun time to be at the center of it!

  • joshparolin

    Great new blog to follow. Thanks Mark! I’d be interested to hear your thoughts specifically on whether the first Social ‘Wave’ is over or not and if social is now only reliable as a feature. Keep up the great work.

  • Cookie Marenco

    Thanks for the great heads up!  I also found Mike Maples description of Technology Waves well said.  It parallels The Adoption of Innovation Curve from a slightly different perspective.

  • Jess Bachman

    Two new potential guests for TWiVC?  Awesome.  It’s been too long.

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  • Angelina Clarke

    Really interesting, Mark (and Roger and Mike).
    I’ll throw another couple of thoughts into the mix:
    Re: (1) Absolutely. But the connection with (7) gets even more interesting when we consider other markets. Even if the U.S. wave has gathered and broken, there’s still a lot of power as it hits other shores. You see this in stark relief in the large emerging markets. I’ll use the example of what I’m seeing here in Brazil: 
    – A “peaking” wave (e.g. Facebook), 
    – Meeting country-specific technology and infrastructure differentials (cheap “semi-smartphones” and carriers pushing very low-cost cellular internet access with preferential access to social networks, respectively), 
    – Plus a totally different demographic reality (see attached population pyramids–50% of the Brazilian population is under 30)
    leads to a very different dynamic. We’re experiencing the part of the wave that’s super frothy and hard to surf on, but nevertheless packs a tsunami punch. Which means (9) is fairly worrying for the US (vis-a-vis Asia, at least), particularly with regards to our long-term competitive advantage on (5). 
    Good stuff. 

  • Dan Bowen

    Actually Jeff only some of it, but it does seem longer than what most developers have been focused on.  That may simply be because of the development of the platforms, however the mystery of smartphones and tablets is over and big solutions should now be built for them.

    I think the short view is in software dev and it has created an ecosystem of disposable products that dilute the value of the platforms.  I have a bias, I’m 43 so I’m young enough to have grown u with tech, but I’m also married with two young kids.  Most of the high-visibility products coming out of the SV offer marginal value to the average family and rather are much better suited to the 18-25 demographic.  I have vastly different time constraints and responsibilities than those that are searching for the nearest late night taqueria to eat, share music and post painful pictures of what happened a couple of hours ago a the local hotspot. 

    I think if developers started to look more long term they would create true value for a much broader base of users. 

  • Dan Bowen

    Trust me Matt, I think it is a big “IF” however I do think there is a great opportunity for MS to execute on this one.  I never count them out simply because of their history of proving all of us wrong.  We laughed at office and they took it over, we laughed at IE and they took over, we laughed at Win Server and they killed it, we laughed at XBox and well…history speaks. 

    I think the key is the continuity of the UI/UX and HTML5.  If we get away from platform specific apps and move to HTML5, the UI/UX and platform continuity will matter much more.  I think it is clear MS is positioning specifically for this option.

    BTW…love your business idea…I was in legal for a decade, you guys are needed.



  • kidmercury

    hahhahaa…..i actually like the simplicity and straightforwardness of the name, but your comment gave me a true LOL……

  • kidmercury

    my criticism is the same for their vision as it is for everyone else: it is too US-centric and believes the world power dynamic and global flow of capital will not change significantly. a false view, in my opinion. the US economy will lose its financial muscle and china will gain it. or, to avoid using nation-state nomenclature, we can say wealth and financial market opportunities are going west to east. that is trend #1, everything else stems from that. people who want to ignore that need to think very small and very local (i.e. bootstrapping a local app for your neighborhood). 

    there’s probably a lot of truth in their vision, though ignoring the big picture is a dangerous move likely to yield an incomplete analysis.  

  • kidmercury

    oh actually they do sorta address this, or allow the possibility for it to be interpreted, via #9. but more than wireless infrastructure, it’s the political/monetary/energy paradigm that will send capital and capital markets elsewhere over the next 10 years. 

  • paramendra

    A great list. 

  • Peter Kadas, Dr.

    I like number 7 the most on the list. It’s so true: social media became an infrastructure and new start-ups should focus on utilizing it.

  • Jack Holt

    Why do they call these “Hypotheses”, I wonder? 

    I def like #10 because it’s already disrupting our household – we only watch TV through a roku device now, or connecting a lapt via hdmi. The big change has to be what always seems to drive these things: content. Amazon has it; NetFlix doesn’t.
    Anyway, thanks for the heads-up on their blog. Hadn’t seen it.

  • Michael Zaro

    Thanks for sharing. I’ve probably told more than a dozen people about your blog already, it’s great to get referred to quality content

  • Gilles B.

    Thank you for sharing it Mark. It highlights an interesting vision of VC investments focuses in the near future, I am curious about your point of view concerning crowd funding  websites. I think that this model plays a  growing and active part in Europe but it is still secondary in the US. It has all elements of hypernet/hyperweb and could be the second wave of social networking. Any thoughts? Best, Gilles

  • Tom Foremski

    I’m not impressed by their list, it seems that these “hypotheses” are really a list of what’s true now but they won’t necessarily true say two to five years from now. Isn’t that the timescale VCs should be looking at? There’s nothing insightful here that I can see.

  • Daniel Milstein

    That is true, Mark. As an author and business man, I can relate to how you said, ”
    It maps to a lot of my own views so I was interested to learn more. “. I hope more people discover your blog because you really know what you’re talking about.  Can’t wait to read more from you!

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  • kenberger

    seriously. and couldn’t they get a better tumblr template? But worst of all: NO COMMENTING ABILITY?

  • Pooky Amsterdam

    With people being part of the content, which has been the first wave of social media – I look to #10 for the answer to “What are you doing on TV tonight?” sure to be said in millions of households over the next decade.  This represents to me the next wave of social media – real – time multi person highly interactive gaming.
     Audience as content is a very powerful force upcoming, one that HTMl5 will enable more and  more through browser based play, and yes ConnectedTV leads me to connect those dots. Live Online Virtual Entertainment,  is something I do on a regular basis – with almost 200 live shows that are avatar based and fully participated in by an enthusiastic audience from literally around the globe.

    I am mentioning it here as Will Wright (of the Sims, and now on the board at Linden Lab) shall be on the Science / Tech show I helm every month, called The 1st Question. Appearing on the panel with him is Grady Booch (IBM) – The show will be broadcast live on February 3rd at 4:30Pm from Second Life and it is a chance to play right along.  This is a splendid example of what I am talking about – viewer log in entertainment.

    This is where technology enables an audience to participate in new, dynamic and unexpected ways.
    thought it worth a mention on this blog I follow for the great insight I gather here. Thank you as always Mark & Happy New Year.




  • Lenticularimageprinting

    Awesome blog. I enjoyed reading your articles. This is truly a great read for me. 

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  • Sarah

    Hi Mark,  thanks you so much for your informative blogs. I have limited IT skills, but enjoy the advice for start ups.  I find myself in the unique position because I am starting my company  and have been approached by a big investor, but am scared of the “rocket fuel”  effect and accepting any capital until I test the product. Any advice?

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  • Momchil Penev

    Dan, very good points about the UI/UX importance. As proved over and over again, (smart) developers will go after large audiences than can be reached efficiently from a single code base. Using  HTML5 as the cross-platform front-end delivery vehicle and solid cloud platforms for back-end processing is already affecting the consumer market. What I am really itching to see is the disruption it will cause on the Business Software side of the market. 

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  • Mike Maples, Jr.

    FAKE GRIMLOCK – Your comments and posts always make me laugh as well as impart wisdom.  Suffice it to say, we weren’t sure if anyone would even read our blog so we have some work to do….especially enabling the comments and taking the time to read and respond to them effectively.  But we are going to stick with the “Roger and Mike” vibe like kidmercury says.

    In the meantime, I’m thinking we have some common ground.  After all, I coined the term “ThunderLizards” so I imagine that we come from a similar gene pool — despite the fact that you are descended from a Robot and my ThunderLizards come from radioactivated eggs 😉




  • Mike Maples, Jr.

    Awesomeness is what we shall seek.  Good luck in your quest for awesome as well.

  • andyidsinga

    love 1,2,6

    #10 is sortof non-commital with the word “could” in it.

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