I'm not yet ready to announce this, I'm still waiting on a couple of call backs, but...I would love to launch the BBC venture capital fund--to focus on investments in startups developing telemetry solutions.
I believe that these are the types of technologies that will be essential in this internet 2.0 phase that is emerging.
Telemetry technologies include network monitoring software, collecting data on how web applications are being used, statistical analysis of behavioral models by large populations, and of course, to complement those goals you need sophisticated identity management technologies, and personalized messaging technologies.
BBC funded startups will be well placed to take advantage of massive multi-billion dollar business opportunities in the private and public sectors.
Companies in the private sector are realizing the enormous efficiencies of online advertising. And now the next step will be to provide them with telemetry technologies and the management tools to refine their ad spend. This will allow them to be laser-accurate with targeting of potential customers and also be able to collect valuable behavioral data about their customers.
The targeting of advertising/marketing messages to individuals is just one-end of the pipe; companies also need to collect data on how customers/individuals are buying/using their products/services. What time of the day is the heaviest use, what are the regional differences, which products appeal to which demographic, how can you use personalization technologies to deliver a unique online experience to a specific user?
Such capabilities would dramatically increase the efficiency of online advertising, and therefore collecting such customer data becomes a very valuable service. Not to mention the range of analytical services that would be required to slice and dice the mountains of data.
Such services are also very valuable to government agencies. The recent request by the Department of Justice for data on web searches shows that it had woken up to the importance of such data. The government's interest in such things will only grow ever larger, as it follows the private sector in wanting to target individuals for the special attention of public services.
Government agencies could monitor blogs, for example, in order to feel the pulse of the population, for example, find out which public services are under-performing and address those issues in real-time.
Government agencies could also employ telemetry technologies in a proactive manner, reducing crime by identifying and rounding up likely suspects before a crime is committed--through behavioral models based on sound statistical analysis.
Yes, today, the government agencies think they can just subpoena the data and get it for free. But that will change once they realize they can buy the data and services, for much less cost than filing subpoenas. A checkbook, rather than a subpoena, avoids unwarranted attention.
There are already many companies that have tracking data on individual bloggers and journalists, such as Technorati and Bacon's. They can track anything new that is written/published on the internet at any time, it is recorded and stored.
The time of publication is known, who visited a web page can be known quite easily, what time of day, what operating system/browser was used. All these pieces of data are standard today--what is needed is the next dimension in the quality of such statistics, that can connect the cultural and contextual elements of individual internet users.
And that is where the BBC--the $100m Big Bro Co-investors Fund--comes into play. It will ensure we have the generation of startups that can fulfill the needs of commerce and government in 2010 and beyond. John">http://www.kpcb.com/team/bio_detail.php?frm_id=15
I'm just waiting on the go-ahead from John Doerr over at Kleiner Perkins, I sent him an email. If I don't hear back from him by Friday, I'll take it to Don Valentine--who is the real deal. Don knows a good idea --11 of the NASDAQ 100 companies are Don Valentine/Sequoia Capital funded; and that includes Cisco and Network Appliance.