The new Fonera 2.0n is not only the ultimate internet assistant, but it also helps to make the world a better place saving you money. If you buy a Fonera 2.0n instead of any other WiFi router you can keep your computer off when doing long downloads and uploads. Conservatively you might save 40 hours of computer time with your Fonera 2.0n every month, which means you will save 2280 Watt·hours. That´s why the new Fonera is black and green.
Marko Ahtisaari is a remarkable Finnish tech entrepreneur who I have known for many years. As you might have heard in this blog, Nokia just acquired Dopplr where Marko was CEO and I was an investor. Now I have more good news about him, Marko has just been named the new head of design at Nokia.
Let me give you some background about Marko because his bio deserves a post in itself. Marko was raised in Helsinki, Dar es Salaam and New York. He studied economics, philosophy and musical composition at Columbia University and later lectured there in logic, philosophy of economics and the history of thought. Marko serves on the board of F-Secure, Newsmill, Artek and WITNESS and is an advisor to our dear Fon. Marko was also one of the Blyk cofounders as well as a founder and CEO of Dopplr. He received a Grammy Showcase Award. His father is a former UN diplomat, president of Finland and the recipient of the 2008 Nobel Peace prize.
Now as a Nokia shareholder I count on my friend Marko to help Nokia where Nokia needs most help and that is usability. Nokia makes great smartphones but while they have some of the best hardware in the world they fall behind in ease of use. My own current ranking would be this. I rank iPhone and Blackerry tied ahead of the pack, then Android, then Nokia and Windows Mobile goes last.
G.hn is a home networking standard developed by the United Nation’s ITU-T that supports gigabit speed communication over power lines, coaxial cables and phone lines. For example, if you have two notebooks with G.hn compatible chargers they would have access to the local network when plugged into a power outlet. The installation is simple and easy. The broadband modems will need an adapter to connect it to the home power grid. This technology is great for HD content distribution around the home.
What does this mean for Fon? Right now Foneras need an Ethernet connection to the ISP’s broadband router. This means their location at home is restricted. With G.hn the Fonera doesn’t need this and it can be placed anywhere in the house where there is a power, coaxial cable or phone line outlet. This means that you can place your Fonera wherever you want, to help you make more money by selling wifi or to increase wifi coverage at home.
18 months ago, at Fon, we launched Twitxr which means twitter plus picture (pronounced twitchr as in basque tx is pronounced ch). We then got coverage from Techcrunch, the Guardian and others. We developed Twitxr at the time the iPhone was getting started and Twitter was just gaining strength. We did from Fon because we wanted to show that there were ways to use Twitter that needed bandwidth and therefore WiFi. Our objective was to do something core to Fon and develop a WiFi enabled Twitter. We had planned to add video to it. But either by copying us or by simultaneous invention the idea of tweets+geolocalizationfriendsmap+pictures+crosspostingfacebookflickr became very popular. Other twitter type projects like Twitpic, Twitwall, Pikter, Pikchur, Twics, here´s 26 of them. At this point we are ready to merge with any of those sites. Twitxr is very global and gets a new picture every 3 minutes or so from all over the world. If you are interested pls contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In this video I compare the Mifi from Novatel with the Fonera 2.0n. Bottom line is this. If all you want is to convert 3G to WiFi get a Mifi. But if you want a router that can do both ethernet and 3G as internet sources, that can upload videos to Youtube on its own, download torrents on its own, give you free roaming to 650,000 other routers, and allow you to make money, that is n and works with many mobile operators Get a Fonera 2.0n. Also 3G plays a great role in a Fonera in case your ADSL breaks down.
As of next week the thousands of 2009 buyers of the Fonera 2.0g will receive an email from Fon offering a substantial discount for the purchase of the newer and faster Fonera 2.0n. We have received many requests along these lines and find them reasonable.
Dopplr has just been acquired by Nokia. Dopplr is a web service that lets you share your travel plans with your network and exchange travel tips and advice about cities around the world. It helps you make your traveling smarter and more enjoyable. Dopplr calls this aggregate of collective intelligence the “Social Atlas”, a cutting-edge service that has provided the team with new insight on how people and location interact. I invested with Dopplr on the first round for the same reasons that I make all my investments. An entrepreneur I admire, in this case Marko Ahtisaari, and a product I use, Dopplr.
Nokia is an excellent platform for the development of this know-how. While I really don’t know what Nokia plans to do with Dopplr I believe that an integration of the service with Nokia phones would make a lot of sense. A mobile Dopplr is the ultimate pocket travel guide. Anytime, anywhere and in the palm of your hand you have the best restaurants, bars, clubs etc. that people who you trust recommended. This element, “the people you trust” is very important. There are many sites that recommend hotels. Trip Advisor is a great one. But the problem I have with Trip Advisor, or IMDB is that I many times find that my taste is more like that of my friends than that of the world at large. I don´t care where the average person wants to stay, or where the average person wants to eat, or where the average person wants to go. I care where my friends who are my most trusted advisors want to go. And that is Dopplr.
Lastly I would like to say that is interesting that Nokia continues to acquire companies of friends of mine. Plazes in which I also invested, and Plum. Nokia continues to be the number one technology company in Europe and Europe needs a strong Nokia. And where Nokia is weak is in services, in software small acquisitions make sense.
Disclosure I own Nokia shares.
Congratulations to Marko Ahtisaari, Matt Biddulph and the Dopplr team!
Here´s a personal view on the Clinton Global Initiative. I recommend you watch it in HD.
CGI´s uniqueness lies in the fact that all participants have to commit to do something to improve the world. My commitments have included building wind and solar farms. As you know this is a business but it reduces carbon emissions. Building the Fonera 2.0n is also a business but this fonera replaces computers that are normally on to do the same tasks and that can also be a commitment. CGI is not against you making money, it is in favor of you doing it in ways that is sustainable.
There are friends and friends in life. Some you see all the time. Some you see less than you would like, but when you do see them you feel very close to them. To me, Luis Moreno Ocampo belongs to this group. This post is about Luis and his activities as the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. As you read this post you will realize that Luis is not just my buddy. He is your buddy as well. And the buddy of all of those who believe that those who commit War Crimes and Genocide should go to jail.
I was an admirer of Luis Moreno Ocampo before I became his friend. I admired him because he had successfully prosecuted the criminals who kidnapped and killed my 17 year old first cousin David Horacio Varsavsky in Argentina as well as 20,000 other innocent victims during the so called “Dirty War” in the late 70s. Growing up Jewish in Buenos Aires and hearing about the Holocaust I did not imagine that at the young age of 16 I was going to live through a smaller version of the same phenomenon in my native town. While the Dirty War was not targeted exclusively against Jews, the military who conducted the assassinations were openly antisemitic. Jews represent less than 1% of the Argentine population, they were around 10% of those murdered, David Horacio Varsavsky included. It is still a sad mystery as to what would make the Argentine military choose my cousin as a victim. In our research all we could find out was that it was a “mistake”, that they were looking for somebody else. Well my aunt who is still alive cries about this “mistake” every day of her life. And these “mistakes” happened because when regimes systematically violate Human Rights to stay in power they end up killing not only those who oppose itself a crime, but many more die in the crossfire. And that is what is happening in a much larger scale in Sudan where millions of aunts Sara are crying over the death of their loved ones.
This week in Manhattan Luis Moreno Ocampo described his view of the conflict in great detail to me. This is what Luis Moreno Ocampo says about Omar AlBashir. Omar AlBashir, Luis argues, is a genocidal dictator whose actions have resulted in the displacement of 4 million people, the death of 300,000, the destruction of villages, homes, and forced emigration of hundreds of thousands. Moreover those 2.5 million people who still remain in Darfur live in concentration camp conditions without access to human rights and are dying in great numbers of starvation, disease, and murder. Many women and girl survivors are subject to systematic rape. Moreover this conflict is an attack of a Muslim majority on a non Muslim minority and is carried out by Omar AlBashir with the help of paramilitary groups similar to those that the Argentine military used in the Dirty War. It is common for a military dictator to ask their own forces to operate under civilian clothes or to create other paramilitary or proxy groups who fight for them. In this case the Janjaweed. Here’s an AlJazzeera interview of Luis Moreno Ocampo. I chose it because – while very civilized – it corroborates what Luis shared were the main difficulties of his case and that is the complicity of many Arab countries with Omar AlBashir. Unfortunately Luis is now having to fight not only Arab regimes who support Omar AlBashir’s actions but China who benefits from his oil and a bizarre collection of organizations and countries who for different reasons prefer the status quo in spite of the genocide that is taking place. There are even humanitarian organizations normally operating in Sudan who believe that by turning Omar AlBashir into a global criminal, Luis Moreno Ocampo has helped accelerate his genocide. And interestingly not even USA is part of the International Criminal Court which makes his work even more complex. Luis Moreno Ocampo understands of course that everyone who is having a hard time with his arrest warrant for Omar AlBashir, including the Chinese and most Arab nations who support him would actually prefer that the genocide ends. But it is a wave of conflicting interests that has made us all sit aside and contemplate daily death and that is why I admire Luis even more. Because as it was the case in Argentina he has picked a case that is for justice but that makes a lot of governments, organizations and people uncomfortable around the world. This is what the Wikipedia says about his arrest warrant.
It is suspected that al-Bashir would not face trial in The Hague any time soon, as Sudan rejects the ICC’s jurisdiction. Payam Akhavan, a professor of international law at McGill University in Montreal and a former war crimes prosecutor, says although he may not go to trial, “He will effectively be in prison within the Sudan itself…Al-Bashir now is not going to be able to leave the Sudan without facing arrest.” The Prosecutor has publicly warned that authorities could arrest the President if he enters international airspace. The Sudanese government has announced the Presidential plane will be accompanied by jet fighters. However, the Arab League has announced its solidarity with al-Bashir. Since the warrant, he has visited Qatar and Egypt. Both countries have refused to arrest him. The African Union also condemned the arrest warrant.
And this is the AlJazzeera interview conducted in a critical tone.
I would like to end this post with a video showing one person, one survivor of the genocide in Darfur in his new life in New York City. For some reason all genocides have some survivors in New York City. It would be nice though to live in a world in which genocides and war crimes just don’t happen anymore.
This is my goodbye post for trolls. Trolls: I have had it with you. I want you out of my blog. Each day around 20,000 people read my Spanish and English blogs in feeds or visits. I get a lot of comments on Twitter on Facebook and they are sometimes positive, sometimes negative, but never written with the intention to hurt. In my Spanish and English blogs I get illuminating comments, both positive and negative. But I also get you guys. You may not be more than 10 people. But you are one pain en el culo. Your mission in my blog seems only to be to prove I suck. Well guys if I suck why do you read my blog? Why do you spend so much time analyzing every little thing I say to prove it wrong? Why don´t you just leave and go to any other of the 55 million blogs out there. So today I will do you a favor. I will throw you out of my blog. You are out of here. Adios. And don´t come back.