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Fred Wilson, an investor who is known with his good decisions (early investor for Twitter, SoundCloud and Kickstarter) has made an interesting speech at LeWeb.

It was about the types of start-ups he was interested in investing and want to share some of them as it was inspiring as well.

He started with saying that he is not interested in technologies but more in trends and prefer to invest in trends.

These 3 trends were the ones that he saw growing:

Removal of bureaucratic hierarchies

The need for speed when it comes to reaching information is clearly the heaviest trend.

The examples he provided were Twitter (replacing old media), Airbnb (replacing hotels) and Kickstarter (replacing production companies).

Simply, anything that removes the middleman in any service (or at least minimizes the number of them).

Unbundling

This can actually be summarized as focusing to niche markets.

The traditional business usually tries to sell all the things it can (like a bank selling loans, cards, accepting deposits, insurance..).

However, he thinks that the user now prefers to get products/services that are specially focused on that and want to get the best as a result (an example was Netflix).

People being the network

With the increasing smartphone usage, we are all part of an active network.

And, he attaches the success of apps like Uber or Tinder to that effect.

 

These 3 trends are the filters of Fred Wilson and think that they are worth considering when launching a start-up.

Here is his speech (it is worth the time):

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  • Selling goods and/or services through web is great and there are lots of tools to accomplish that.

    However, it is hard to analyze sales, revenues, expenses, refunds, etc. if we accept payments through multiple providers and multiple sites (anyone searched for a transaction at PayPal probably experienced this).

    Putler, an Adobe AIR-based application, is a powerful sales analytics companion to anyone selling through web.

    Putler

    It is integrated with all popular payment gateways (PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.net, 2Checkout..) and e-commerce softwares (WooCommerce, Shopify, BigCommerce..).

    Additionally, with its API, any other gateway can be integrated pretty quickly.

    The app provides you a quick snapshot of the sales, revenues, best selling products and more for a given period.

    Also, you can easily see the trend, all transactions of a customer and even estimates in a chart-supported interface.

    Putler Sales View

    Putler is not all about viewing but can perform actions like issuing refunds or managing subscriptions which would normally take a time from the payment provider’s web interface.

    Although a connection is required to pull the data from payment providers and e-commerce apps, after that, working offline is possible too. And it works fast when offline.

    They are also working on a new mobile app and the web version will be released next year.

    Additional free month to all

    When you sign-up for a paid plan, using the coupon code wrdfreemonth, you get an additional month for free. Thanks to the guys at Putler for offering this.

    P.S. The offer is valid until 31 Dec 2013

    The giveaway

    3 Annual Premium plans are being given away and, in order to join, please comment to this post.

    Winners will be selected with the query below and announced a week later (16 Dec 2013).

    SELECT * FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_post_id=4957 AND comment_approved=1 AND comment_type='' GROUP BY comment_author_email ORDER BY RAND() LIMIT 3

    Good luck to all.

    The winners

    Here they are:

    • Steven Taylor (comment #1284316)
    • Spencer Spencerh (comment #1284220)
    • Darren Miller (comment #1284243)

    Congratulations.

    LeWeb, one of the oldest (10th year) and largest conference for web entrepreneurs and startups is starting tomorrow in Paris.

    There is an exciting line up of speakers and sessions and the 3-day-event will be held around the motto “The Next 10 Years“.

    LeWeb Paris

    It’ll definitely be inspiring (which I think the conferences are usually all about) to listen Guy Kawasaki, Gary Vaynerchuk, Tony Fadell, Jesse Richman and others.

    There will also be a start-up competition running parallel to the conference where winners will be set the last day and it’l be interesting to experience the process.

    I was planning to go to LeWeb Paris 2013 since months, had applied to their official bloggers program, accepted and actually writing this post from the airport, my way to Paris.

    LeWeb Paris Speakers

    Like mentioned, there are lots of sessions and I’m specially excited about the ones with the founders of Parse, Uber, Nest, About.me and also crypto-currency discussion.

    You will probably see some more posts this week about LeWeb at WRD as I plan to share the exciting stuff.

    Also, If you will be there, don’t forget to say “hello” : ).

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  • When sharing designs with teammates or customers, sending them via e-mail or other ways is usually a bad way of presenting and hard to track

    WebProjector is a free web-based tool that is built just for this. We can simply upload images via drag ‘n drops, send a link via e-mail and the images are presented in the order we prefer.

    WebProjector

    The tool also notifies us when they are viewed or number of views and it can wrap our designs in mobile, tablet or desktop frames for a more realistic view.

    Additionally, it is possible to get comments on each design too.

    If you have a product or service and receiving support requests regularly, using a support ticket application is a “must” to handle them nicely.

    Brimir is a free and open source support ticket app that is built with Ruby on Rails and makes use of the Foundation front-end framework.

    Brimir

    The tickets can be received via e-mail and they are auto-piped to Brimir. It is multi-user and tickets can be assigned to selected team members.

    There is support for attachments, tickets can have different statuses and also priorities to categorize them easier.

    Brimir is optimized for mobile devices and has various other options for customization.

    If your work involves continuous use of creative images, then you’re probably used to searching the databases of countless stock photo agencies – one at a time – looking for that perfect royalty-free item, and pay for it via that agency’s credit system/subscription plan.

    What if I told you that there is a way to cut back on your expenses, as well as find the avidly sought-for stock files really fast?

    Lootback

    This is the story of Lootback, a platform that connects creative professionals to the topmost microstock agencies of the industry, and rewards its users for each and every purchase that was completed with its help.

    In other words, Lootback claims a certain commission from the partner agencies for sending in new clients, and then shares that money with the user responsible for it, fair and square.

    Every purchase entails new earnings, so it really helps your finances in the long run.

    It’s very easy to work with Lootback and get cash for doing what you normally do; only now you can search faster, and in a centralized place.

    For instance, the first step is to start a quarry, so let’s assume you jot down ‘winter’ as keyword and move forward. The results page summons all pertinent matches that exist in renowned stock agencies’ archives.

    Lootback Search

    Lootback partnered up with the most popular agencies on the market – iStock, Shutterstock, Thinkstock, Deposit Photos, and Envato’s own Graphicriver, Themeforest, and Videohive – in order to deliver flawless content at your threshold.

    You may toggle which kind of files you’re specifically looking for, as well as the source venues from whence they come.

    Scan through the results gathered from all these high-ranked agencies, and when one of them catches your fancy, feel free to click on it.

    Now, you have to create a Lootback account. It won’t take long, and you need it in order to reap the benefits later on, so give it a minute of your time.

    After registration, you’re redirected to your stock image of choice, where you will have to pay for it with the prepaid credits of the agency in question.

    So, if you don’t have an account, create one there as usual (you know the drill), and then make the purchase via credits. The process is herewith completed.

    Lootback Purchase

    In no more than 12 hours after completing a transaction, you will be sent Cash Back in your Lootback account, which will be visible in the ‘Cash Back Earnings’ section of the dashboard.

    Every time you buy an image in this manner, its designated Cash Back won’t fail to appear.

    You may cash out all your earnings with Paypal in 7 to 90 days, as the stock agencies that you bought from need to process each report – which can take very little time, or slightly more than expected. But it reaches you, nonetheless.

    Lootback Signup

    Lootback is, as you can see, very easy to use, and works to your advantage.

    Give it a try and see how you like getting money while acquiring royalty-free images to employ in your projects.

    You’ll probably remember CometChat, a solid and self-hosted chat application that is similar to Facebook-chat and was featured few times at WRD.

    The application has been improved so much lately and now consists of more features that will probably attract users.

    To remember; CometChat is built with PHP and, with a simple setup, it instantly creates an in-site chat system that enables users/visitors to chat with each other.

    CometChat Splash

    It has support for text or video, screen sharing, file sharing, auto-translating conversations and even games to make sure the visitors spend lots of time on the site.

    Also, it integrates into most of the popular CMS + forum apps so easily and works with GTalk + Facebook chat too.

    With the newest one, ComeChat v5, it now has native apps for iOS + Android (there was also mobile-friendly web interface and a desktop messenger), Skype-like HD video, broadcasting videos and more.

    The Black Friday Sale

    CometChat Black Friday

    The sale is for the package of “Platinum Edition + Desktop Messenger + iOS & Android apps” for $747 (original price is $1097) and it can be reached from here.

    So, that’s $350 off and an opportunity for anyone willing to get the full package.

    The giveaway

    CometChat is giving away  ”3 * CometChat Basic Edition” licenses.

    In order to join, a tweet with the hashtag “#blackfriday” and @cometchat is required. Click to tweet easily.

    Winners will be selected randomly and announced on Monday (2 Dec 2013). Good luck to all.

    The winners

    • @BryGom
    • @StylifyYourBlog
    • @eric_maechler

    Congratulations.

    For any small business or freelancer, keeping track of the client invoices and payments is a job that is handled personally.

    Using an online invoicing solution can help minimizing the effort spent on the task and, FusionInvoice, a free + open source invoicing app can help.

    FusionInvoice is built with PHP/MySQL and has a simple-yet-nice interface.

    FusionInvoice

    Using the app, we can define clients, send quotes, convert quotes to invoices or create and send the invoices directly. Invoices can be set as “recurring” as well.

    As a payment system, there is only support for PayPal and any other payment provider will require some custom coding.

    In the dashboard, it is possible to filter records, view reports and also create guest users (like clients) which only has read permissions so that they can view their invoices and payments too.

    Inky Deals is running an exciting giveaway and here are the details:

    By entering this contest, you’ll automatically receive a pack of premium resources worth $55 for free. It comes from the Inky Deals best seller Full Design Library: $3,860 worth of Premium Resources for Only $49.

    About Inky Deals

    Inky Deals is one of the leading deals websites in the design community, with an extended family of more than 300,000 design enthusiasts.

    It’s the place to go if you want to buy premium resources at unbeatable prices, whether you’re a graphic or web designer, developer, or business owner looking to improve yourself and your work.

    They’re the only ones who offer a 200% money back guarantee on every product. This means that if you’re not happy with it, you get your money back and you also get to keep the product.

    Because Inky (the lovable little ink blob) and his team enjoy giving back to the community, they’ve launched this unique giveaway where you can win an iPad Air and 5 design deals of your choice from the website. Take advantage of this opportunity to freshen up your personal library of resources for 2014!

    Testimonials

    Inky Deals Testimonials

    What can you win?

    By entering this contest, you’ll automatically receive for free a pack of premium resources worth $55. This pack comes from the best seller Full Design Library: $3,860 worth of Premium Resources for Only $49 and you’ll get it through email, the same day you enter the giveaway.

    Inky Deals Prizes Read the rest of this entry »

    There are many metrics and information on the web that we may be following regularly: tweets, number of followers, Facebook messages, GitHub activity and much more.

    Reportr is a free and open source web application (with an alternative hosted version) that allows us to track any data and make it all visible from a single dashboard.

    Reportr

    It is built with Nodejs, uses MongoDB for storage and comes with various ready-to-use trackers like Facebook, Twitter, GitHub, Foursquare and even Runkeeper or Fitbit.

    Reportr has a simple REST API and adding new trackers is pretty simple.

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