Category Archives: Tech

Blocking time for (planned) chance encounters

I wrote this before about how I am trying to manage my time.

https://seedvc.blog/2017/07/19/time-management/

I always get asked as I have transitioned to VC from a product guy, how I feel about VC life. I think most folks are surprised when I tell them it is all good but managing my time is hard. Why? It is easy to get busy with all the stuff we do. Meeting companies, helping portfolio companies, fund management stuff, meeting LP’s and just spending enough time with your own team helping each other improve our craft.

I am not complaining but just highlighting that if I am not careful – I can easily fill up my day and then wonder where my time went.

Regardless, I still feel it is important to meet new people. Recently I was contacted to provide a referral for a former employee of mine. The person asking for the referral also requested a coffee to chat more. I have made time for these coffees and used my trusty admin Evie, Evie is well trained and knows that coffee meetings are 45 mins at a specific location I like, had it all set up in a few emails.

Yesterday I had that coffee. I am glad I did.

I actually got to meet the guy who helped lead the acquistion of Path and who ran the transitional Path engineering team. There were lots of interesting things I learned but not all I can share. Some small tidbits – the transition team was mostly all Koreans who moved to Jakarta, they all eventually moved back, there is one Indonesian engineer still working on Path, and Path is basically dying a slow death.

We enjoyed our chat given my Yahoo/Koprol experience and it reminded me that the “culture of busy” will keep these fun meetings from happening.

Have fun out there!

 

Hacking the Fish Tank

DarkTrace never ceases to amaze.

Check this report :: https://www.darktrace.com/resources/wp-global-threat-report-2017.pdf

Read #6:

Technological innovations keep businesses dynamic and pro table, their employees productive and creative, and their premises exciting and modern. A North American casino recently installed a high-tech sh tank as a new attraction, with advanced sensors that automatically regulate temperature, salinity, and feeding schedules.

To ensure these communications remained separate from the commercial network, the casino con gured the tank to use an individual VPN to isolate the tank’s data. However, as soon as Darktrace was installed, it identi ed anomalous data transfers from the sh tank to a rare external destination.

Anomalous activity detected:

  • Transfer of 10GB outside the network
  • No other company device had communicated with this external location
  • No other company device was sending a comparable amount of outbound data
  • Communications took place on a protocol normally associated with audio and video

The tank’s communication patterns included sporadic communications with company devices, but that activity was in line with similarly con gured IoT devices. The external data transfers, however, were deemed highly unusual by Darktrace’s AI algorithms.

The data was being transferred to a device in Finland where an attacker had managed to gain control over the tank. This was a clear case of data ex ltration, but far more subtle than typical attempts at data theft.

By targeting an unconventional device that had recently been introduced into the network, the attack managed to evade the casino’s traditional security tools. Darktrace’s Enterprise Immune System detected the threat because the technology does not make assumptions about where threats will arise. It detected a subtle anomaly that indicated a much larger threat, and it aided the casino in remediating the vulnerability. The incident demonstrates the need to have complete visibility of every user and device – including internet-connected sh tanks.

Singapore the 🎯 

Was quoted today in this article :: https://techcrunch.com/2017/07/22/alibaba-tencent-southeast-asia-game-of-thrones/

My general view is that although the Chinese VC and Chinese company activity in SEA region is probably the most as compared to any other region – my gut says that in general Singapore will continue grow to become a target of other regions like the USA and Europe as well.

Singapore has become the default SEA HQ and as the startups continue to mature – the attractiveness to Singapore acquisitions and investment will climb.

Productivity

One of our views is that automation will eat the world – like it or not. For me personally, I try to figure out ways to get more productive and manage my own time better. As a VC, I take a lot of meetings. Which means being heavily into my calendar. I have pretty much always relied on Fantastical. They have a new update :: http://flexibits.com/blog/2017/07/fantastical-2-4-for-mac-midsummer-edition/.

Which is killer but I must say that I use it less and less. Why?

Cause my calendar is largely automated via email using Evie.ai.

They have just launched their new product and rebranding.

Full disclosure – SeedPlus is an investor but I was using it before that happened.

Anyways. Check it out. You will love it.