What you need to know - 03/29/11

Ronny Kerr · March 29, 2011 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/18a3

Amazon launches a cloud drive and music tool; Cheezburger buys Know Your Meme

Adap.tv, the platform that makes buying and selling video advertising simple and efficient, closed $20 million in financing led by Bessemer Venture Partners.

 

Amazon took the wraps off a compelling new cloud drive available immediately to all Amazon users in the U.S. The best part? Everyone gets 5 GB for free.

 Apperian, provider of mobile application management solutions, closed a $9.5 million round of venture financing, with investments from North Bridge Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers’ (KPCB) iFund, CommonAngels and LaunchCapital.

Cheapflights Media completed an investment in the travel meta-search site momondo.com and its parent company Skygate International.

 

Cheezburger, the Internet publisher best known for popularizing LOLcats, FAILS, and other Internet memes, acquired Know Your Meme, the most authoritative site that researches and documents the history and origins of Internet memes and viral phenomena.

E-commerce giant eBay has agreed to acquire GSI Commerce, an e-commerce and digital marketing solutions provider, for $2.4 billion.

 

Apple and Google are the target of a plea from attorneys general Douglas F. Gansler of Maryland and Beau Biden of Delaware to ban smartphone apps that help drivers avoid DUI checkpoints.

Limos.com raised $10 million from Austin Ventures and released its new corporate travel management product, Limos.com for Business.

Cisco announced its intent to acquire newScale, provider of software that delivers a service catalog and self-service portal for IT organizations to select and quickly deploy cloud services within their businesses.

 

Newsy, a mobile news video site, raised $1.5 million in funding from an unnamed St. Louis-based private equity firm.

 

U.K.-based early-stage investment firm Passion Capital  raised $60 mllion for its first investment fund.

 

To help SMBs build up their social media presence without having to spend hours online, Roost is launching its new social marketing platform, which will provide content suggestions to streamline the business owner's social marketing campaign.

Jack Dorsey, one of the original creators of Twitter, is back leading product at the company. He will continue to serve as CEO for Square as well.

 

Free website builder Wix raised $40 million in Series D funding led by Insight Venture Partners and DAG ventures, with Benchmark Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners and Mangrove Capital Partners participating

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Ronny Kerr

I am a professional writer with a decade of experience in the technology industry. At VatorNews, I cover the zero-waste economy, venture capital, and cannabis. I'm also available for freelance hire.

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Adap.tv

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Adap.tv: Leadership and Innovation for the New World of Online Video Advertising

Adap.tv helps publishers capitalize on the soaring popularity of online video among viewers and advertisers. Our flagship offering, Adap.tv OneSource, provides a single point of control to serve and manage ads from in-house and third party sources, in all major video formats, using your existing display ad server. OneSource streamlines ad operations, supporting efficient scalability for any online video business, from startups to major media companies.

As the first open and universal video ad sourcing and management platform, the powerful yet simple to use OneSource system has already gained broad industry support. More than 300 publishers in 71 countries use OneSource to monetize hundreds of millions of video streams each month. Whether an already established leader in video publishing—or a publisher determined to become one—Adap.tv provides the tools they need to achieve their online video goals.

Roost

Startup/Business

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Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Roost is a new social marketing platform for individual professionals and businesses that helps manage their social presence and engage with their customers across key social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. Roost has more than 20,000 real estate professionals and over 100 companies using its social products. Roost's executive team is comprised of small business and social media experts from Walmart.com, Merchant Circle, Flixter and Social Gaming Network. The company is venture capital funded by Shasta Ventures and General Catalyst. Turn social into business at http://www.roost.com

 

Twitter

Startup/Business

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What is Twitter?

Twitter is an online information network that allows anyone with an account to post 140 character messages, called tweets. It is free to sign up. Users then follow other accounts which they are interested in, and view the tweets of everyone they follow in their "timeline." Most Twitter accounts are public, where one does not need to approve a request to follow, or need to follow back. This makes Twitter a powerful "one to many" broadcast platform where individuals, companies or organizations can reach millions of followers with a single message. Twitter is accessible from Twitter.com, our mobile website, SMS, our mobile apps for iPhone, Android, Blackberry, our iPad application, or 3rd party clients built by outside developers using our API. Twitter accounts can also be private, where the owner must approve follower requests. 

Where did the idea for Twitter come from?

Twitter started as an internal project within the podcasting company Odeo. Jack Dorsey, and engineer, had long been interested in status updates. Jack developed the idea, along with Biz Stone, and the first prototype was built in two weeks in March 2006 and launched publicly in August of 2006. The service grew popular very quickly and it soon made sense for Twitter to move outside of Odea. In May 2007, Twitter Inc was founded.

How is Twitter built?

Our engineering team works with a web application framework called Ruby on Rails. We all work on Apple computers except for testing purposes. 

We built Twitter using Ruby on Rails because it allows us to work quickly and easily--our team likes to deploy features and changes multiple times per day. Rails provides skeleton code frameworks so we don't have to re-invent the wheel every time we want to add something simple like a sign in form or a picture upload feature.

How do you make money from Twitter?

There are a few ways that Twitter makes money. We have licensing deals in place with Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft's Bing to give them access to the "firehose" - a stream of tweets so that they can more easily incorporate those tweets into their search results.

In Summer 2010, we launched our Promoted Tweets product. Promoted Tweets are a special kind of tweet which appear at the top of search results within Twitter.com, if a company has bid on that keyword. Unlike search results in search engines, Promoted Tweets are normal tweets from a business, so they are as interactive as any other tweet - you can @reply, favorite or retweet a Promoted Tweet. 

At the same time, we launched Promoted Trends, where companies can place a trend (clearly marked Promoted) within Twitter's Trending Topics. These are especially effective for upcoming launches, like a movie or album release.

Lastly, we started a Twitter account called @earlybird where we partner with other companies to provide users with a special, short-term deal. For example, we partnered with Virgin America for a special day of fares on Virginamerica.com that were only accessible through the link in the @earlybird tweet.

 

What's next for Twitter?

We continue to focus on building a product that provides value for users. 

We're building Twitter, Inc into a successful, revenue-generating company that attracts world-class talent with an inspiring culture and attitude towards doing business.