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Roundup: Last Google Jet hearing, VC China wars, Capton, Vysr, Wablet, more

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Google co-founders have settled with the guy who spilled beans on the secretive Google Jet -- A final hearing is scheduled for Aug. 29. Details here in the Mercury News story today.


Draper Fisher Jurvetson reappears in China -- After a rocky period in China, Silicon Valley venture firm DFJ has reasserted itself: Its newest affiliate fund, DFJ DragonFund China, has raised $80 million.

Sequoia Capital's china fund invests in Beijing insurance aggregator China Concord Alliance -- Speaking of Silicon Valley firms in China, this is Sequoia's tenth investment in China. Sequoia, you'll remember, picked off one of DFJ's partners, and has moved rapidly there.

Capton, an RFID sensor developer for liquor bottles, raises $5 million -- This technology, simply put, will determine whether bartenders are stealing. The money comes from San Francisco firm Quest Ventures and individuals. It is being used in about 100 locations.

Vysr, a secretive consumer Internet software company, has raised $865,000 -- There is no Web site, and we don't know anything else, other than backers include Sand Hill Group, and it is being run by engineer Guda Venkatesh, co-founder of Teltier, a mobile application company. Earlier, he worked at Bell Labs. He's an expert in "instant messaging" and "presence and availability management."

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Secretive Wablet, a San Francisco/Phillipines company, wants to compete with Meebo -- The secretive company is now taking invitations for closed alpha. It has its work cut out for it. Meebo, the Web-based service that lets you instant message to any account from pretty much any computer, has come out with some popular features.


BitTorrent developing new cache protocol for P2P -- The San Francisco-based BitTorrent, which offers the most popular technology for distributing large files over the Internet, is working with British company Cachelogic to develop a new "Cache Discovery Protocol" -- which lets Internet service providers cache data for the most popular files being transferred, thus helping to clear the clogged tubes Sen. Stevens was complaining about. Wonder how cache competitors like Itiva will respond.

Yahoo developed way to customize your search engine -- Details here. It responds to recent refinements offered by Rollyo, which does something similar. These features let you search certain sites of your choice as you move around the Web.

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Bruce Leak
Carrier IQ, which tracks data about a mobile phone user's experience, has raised $10M -- The Mountain View start-up is the latest gig of WebTV co-founder Bruce Leak. Carrier IQ's analytics software is embedded in your phone, and collects data on just about every level, including service and network layer, radio frequency, Internet protocol and even downloaded software -- and delivering it to the carriers. Backers include Accel Partners, Charles River Ventures and Mohr, Davidow.


The year-long battle to get comments removed from eBay, and a Rapleaf opening? -- Here is an eye-opening story about how your reputation can be damaged because of comments on eBay, and how there is no conflict resolution process: EBay will not remove feedback unless it receives a court order finding that the disputed feedback is ‰¥þslanderous, libelous, defamatory or otherwise illegal.'‰¥ú The story was written earlier this week by Merc colleague Elise Ackerman, and spurred Jeff Nolan to suggest this problem may be something start-up RapLeaf should try to resolve. Rapleap lets you carry your online reputation across multiple sites, and because it is open, may be more conducive to conceivably third-party resolution. For now, though eBay is fighting Rapleaf.

The good news of Sprint Nextel's WiMax -- This story broke a few days ago. We want to make sure you saw it, because Sprint's adoption of WiMax could finally give life to the expensive investments by Intel and others to push this technology. Wimax offers high-speed internet for miles. Now Sprint is investing $3 billion to roll it out. It is significant because start-ups could offer all kinds of independent cellphone and others services by tapping into the network. Mike at Techdirt tears up the convoluted analysis by the WSJ about what all this means for Net Neutrality.


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Comments

The last piece about Sprint is particularly interesting given previous mention of McCaw's company--Clearwire. I was part of an investor group that passed on clearwire about a year ago, one of the main reasons being we noticed that Sprint/Nextel merger afforded Spring with a considerable amount of 2.5GHz (WiMax) spectrum.

Jesse P on August 12, 2006 1:19 AM
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