Octopart (W07) Powers Product Search for EETimes

EE Times New Product Center Includes Robust Vertical Search Powered by Octopart

Appoints Allan Yogasingam to Newly Created Product Editor Position

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- EE Times Group [formerly TechInsights], a division of United Business Media [LON: UBM], announced today a new and improved focus on electronic products and components as it aggressively responds to the needs of its audience and advertisers. The first iteration of this strategy is a robust vertical search platform powered by Octopart as part of a new EE Times Product content area of eetimes.com. To lead this effort, EE Times is promoting Allan Yogasingam to a newly created position to oversee the EE Times Products development.

Products are the lifeblood of the electronics industry and are introduced at an incredibly fast pace. With the help of Octopart, EE Times is bringing an innovative and fresh approach to this key information need by combining vertical search technology with a wealth of unparalleled content. This includes design articles, technical papers, online courses, and dynamic product comparison tables. Led by Yogasingam, a former purchasing engineer, the new content initiative will focus on all aspects of product information gathering needs from distributor sourcing to editorial product reviews, from semiconductors to electromechanical components, from search to online design tools.

The beta version of the Octopart powered search engine launched December 7 and enables fast access to critical information from electronic component manufacturers (including datasheets) and franchised distributors with links to distributors to order samples or order your entire supply.

A further integration of relevant content across the EE Times vast network of digital information, such as courses, tutorials, and relevant technical papers, will be incorporated in a phased approach early next year.

"The online universe offers many opportunities to provide designers with timely and useful product information and tools to accelerate their design process," said Paul Miller, CEO of the EE Times Group. "With this re-energized focus on products by EE Times, our goal is to provide all the knowledge and tools an engineer can want in one centralized location, making it easier for them to do what they do best, design."

EE Times Product search functionality is powered by Octopart, a vertical search engine that streamlines the process of finding parts by providing access to manufacturer and distributor data at one central location. Part buyers and engineers can search millions of parts by availability or technical specification.

"Octopart provides part search to hundreds of thousands of design engineers and part buyers around the globe," said Sam Wurzel, CEO and co-founder of Octopart. "We are very proud to be partnering with EE Times, the industry's flagship publication. This partnership will benefit the users of eetimes.com and furthers our position as a leader in the electronic part search arena."

About EE Times Group

EE Times Group, a division of United Business Media [LON:UBM], is the global leader in media and marketing services for the electronics industry. We deliver results for the key influencers and decision makers involved in the design, development and commercialization of technology through our market leading brands. More than 1.1 million engineering professionals engage with the EE Times Network - EE Times, TechOnline, DesignLines, and Embedded.com - across the globe. The technology community comes to our market leading events to share, learn, discuss, and advance the critical issues and challenges facing the electronics industry. As well, EE Times Group provides end-to-end services ranging from next-generation marketing, integrated media and research.

About Octopart

Octopart Inc. is a leading vertical search engine focused on electronic parts. Octopart indexes parts from over 3000 manufacturers at http://octopart.com and also provides an open API. Octopart was started in the fall of 2006 by two physics graduate students who were tired of searching for identical electronic parts in lots of different paper catalogs. The website launched to the public in March of 2007.

Congratulations, Appjets!

It was announced today that Appjet (YC S07) has been acquired by Google.  No one we've funded deserved it more than the Appjets: over the last two years those guys worked their asses off.  In fact, they are a good example of how extreme iteration can be.

They did three complete startups worth of work.  At first they were an all-Javascript application platform.  Essentially they tried to build both Rails and Heroku at the same time.  Unfortunately I didn't think of that characterization till later, when we were trying to figure out why the first incarnation didn't work.  It was just too much work, at least to do within the funding constraints of a startup.

In the second incarnation, Mohammed went to the mountain: if they couldn't get people to use their server-side Javascript framework, they'd switch to something people already wanted to use on the server: PHP. But that, unfortunately, they just couldn't stand working on.  The PHP days were probably the lowest point, judging by how bedraggled they seemed.

So then they decided to switch back to Javascript, and to entice users by giving them libraries for real-time synchronization they couldn't get elsewhere.  To show off their new libraries, they built Etherpad.  And that, as so often happens in startups, became the tail that wagged the dog.  They realized fairly quickly that they had a winner with Etherpad, so they got out of the development platform business and into the collaboration software business.

Suddenly, after two years of crashing through the underbrush, the Appjets were in the right place the right time: they had cool real-time technology just at the moment when real-time was what everyone was after.   So they had a lot of options; investors and acquirers were all over them.

The reason they decided to go with Google was that they were literally overwhelmed by Wave: after meeting the Wave guys, they were so impressed that they (a) wanted to work on Wave themselves, and (b) didn't want to compete with it.  After watching the Appjets tough it out for the past two years, I knew they weren't simply being cowards.  The technology in Wave must be pretty impressive, and we're happy for the Appjets that they not only managed to land safely after so many ups and downs, but that they landed in a place they actually want to be.

WSJ's Walt Mossberg Reviews ZumoDrive (S07)

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Dropbox (S07) Raised $6 Million Sequoia-Led Series A In October 2008

Earlier today GigaOm reported that Dropbox raised a new $7.25 million funding round over the summer (a number they derived from a SEC filing but that CEO Drew Houston wouldn’t confirm). We just spoke to Houston, who says that figure is wrong, and it’s off by nearly a year: Dropbox did close a Series A funding round, but it was for $6 million, and it was back in October 2008. And it was led by Sequoia, not Accel (though Accel did participate in the round).

Previously, Dropbox raised a seed round from Sequoia that was $1.2 million in convertible debt (they also raised money through the Y Combinator program).

full article at techcrunch.com