Plaxo Office Space

When I worked at Plaxo’s offices on Crittenden (now part of the GooglePlex), there was a door to our server closet inside the handicap stall men’s bathroom of the third floor.

Plaxo Crittenden Bathroom Layout

I can picture this like a scene in the movie: You are minding their own business, taking a shit on the toilet when the mysterious door opens, a sysadmin walks into the stall, says to you, “Oh, Excuse me, our wifi was down.” He then opens your stall door and leaves.

PC Load Letter

One day a VP went to print something out, and started shouting, “PC Load Letter? PC Load Letter! What the heck does that mean? PC Load Letter?! Does anyone know what that means?”

He was deadly serious—the entire office was busting up because unlike him, they had actually seen this movie:

My Plaxo Spam

Now that Pulse is officially out, I decided to “spam” my Plaxo members. I don’t know if it’s really spam since these are only the people already on Plaxo and I had to add them each individually (I wish there was a bulk function.)

A peek at Plaxo Pulse

[About Plaxo and Lunch 2.0 after the jump]Continue reading

My Yelpz is borked!

I’m trying to sync my Yelp with the internets:

Yelp seriously needs the Plaxo widget

Argh! I have no friends 🙁

Yo! Yelp, Here’s a hint. That goes for the rest of you guys also who can’t figure out address book import. It’s scary how easy this stuff is when you let someone else do the work for you.

Plaxo labs search (and birthdays)!

Plaxo search

Plaxo Labs search is working. Notice that I used the Plaxo search plugin which I installed in Firefox.

(Yes, apparently I need to use the deduper.)

Another surprising feature is a birthday view that was added to contacts:

Plaxo birthday list

Too bad I can’t sort by upcoming birthdays. 🙁 But notice that alert? Something about requesting birthdays from your contacts?

Plaxo birthday reminders

Score! Birthday requests are much friendlier than contact information update requests. Who wouldn’t want a birthday ecard in their inbox? 🙂


Now if only Plaxo would give a free one day subscription to unlimited premium eCard sends to people on their birthday…

Plaxo is evil. Plaxo is spam.

Disclaimer: I worked as an engineer at Plaxo a long time ago (in internet years… in human years it was five months ago).

In October of last year, an engineering colleague asked me about this whole “Plaxo is evil. Plaxo is spam” thing. At the time I went in to a long boring lecture about Plaxo and privacy/security. (I don’t need to go into it here, you can read this to get a taste.)

After sitting through it, he asked me this simple question: “If you didn’t work for Plaxo, would you use it?”

I answered, “I’ll do you one better. I’m not going to be working for Plaxo much longer, and I’ll continue to use it after I leave.”

“Good enough for me.”

[The power of connections. The power of search. After the jump]Continue reading

The Lunch 2.0 story so far

Lunch 20 @AOL.COM

AOL, Mountain View, California

Nikon D70, Nikkor 12-24mm f/4G
f/4 at 1/25 second, iso 500, 12mm (18mm)

Summer is here and Lunch 2.0 is starting up again. There are two events scheduled already, and from two of my favorite Web 2.0 startups to boot!

The first one will be at LinkedIn. Which is important because their founder is on the board of the company that pays my salary. We’re the second entry in their newly-born corporate blog! Next step: get Mario to blog about my LinkedIn Haikus (they really work, honest!).

The other one will Ning on June 14. Little known factoid: Ning was our very first Lunch 2.0, even if they didn’t know it. (Ahh, back in the good old days when Lunch 2.0 meant sneaking into a company’s cafeteria and sticking our Lunch 2.0 flag in the ground… or fork in their cake.)

IMG_0563.JPG by Mario Sundar

Gina Bianchini of Ning and Reid Hoffmann of LinkedIn at Web 2.0 Expo. Two people dear to my heart. And it’s not because they’re hosting Lunch 2.0.

Oh, who am I kidding. It is. We love you guys! 😀

The what and wherefore of lunch-two-point-oh

Lunch 2.0 is about participating in an interesting conversation over a free lunch.

If you are interested in being a diner, going to a Lunch 2.0 is really easy. Just say you’re going to attend and our hosts will deal with the fallout. 😀 Afterwards, write about it in your blog, post some photos, or produce a video. (Send us an e-mail so we can link it.) While that’s not a requirement, it’s that sort of buzz is what pays the bills when our hosts have to justify this craziness to their corporate overlords. Or, if you are a corporate overlord, host one yourself…

If you want to host a Lunch 2.0, it’s really easy to become an “eatery.” Just send Mark or me an e-mail. We really want to eat your lunch. Honest! Mark explained our philosophy best:

Lunch 2.0, much like Web 2.0, is all about being open. We welcome any companies that are interested in hosting Lunch 2.0 events 🙂

C’mon Lunch 2.0 has got to be hipper than that moleskine that you carry around to keep your lo-tech creds up.

Lunch 2.0: Taste the buzz.

Warning: A long and inconsistent story ahead

Speaking of waxing nostalgic, I think it’s about time I finally post this article about the Lunch 2.0 story. The first time I tried to write this was in response to a query by FutureWorks back in October of last year. The second was in February to celebrate the first anniversary of Lunch 2.0. This will be the third attempt, so it’ll be a long one…

It’s about time I got my story straight about this Lunch 2.0 thing (or at least, my lies consistent). What follows is the honest-to-God truth (uh, sort of).

[How we created Lunch 2.0: The True Hollywood Story after the jump]Continue reading

Plaxo gets its sync on

Speaking of Plaxo and LinkedIn, it looks like some people at my former company actually listened to the moral of the Underpants Gnomes talk and launched Plaxo-LinkedIn integration as a premium feature (as well as a Labs section).

I tried it out and the first screen I got was a rejection because Safari isn’t supported. This is actually heartening since it’s about time Plaxo started to release stuff that wasn’t perfect.

The next step told me things were a one-way sync, so it’s really just an importer. I hope that this is a problem with LinkedIn’s end. It shows a nice status animation in both the top right and a candystripe bar.

Plaxo-LinkedIn integration screen one

Note to self: steal the animation in the top right for Ajaxian applications. Note to Plaxo: it’d be nice if the status bar actually updated.

[More Plaxo Sync Platform review after the jump.]
Continue reading