hbo's silicon valley

‘Silicon Valley’ Fact Check: Here Are the 5 Most Insane Tech Conference Misfires

(Screengrab via HBO)

On last night’s Silicon Valley, the guys visited TechCrunch Disrupt to present Pied Piper. Their highly anticipated conference debut didn’t quite go as planned, though. Erlich’s meticulously planned, overly theatrical presentation ended soon after it had begun when a judge tackled him from across the stage.

This got us thinking: what are some other examples of presentations that have livened up the tech conference scene, for good or ill? A day full of panels and demos at SXSW or CES can get boring fast, after all. We might as well take a minute to salute the folks who make fools of themselves for the purposes of our entertainment, accidentally or not. Read More


Booting Up: GMail Is Going To Let Any Old Nigerian Prince On Google+ Email You

Aw, GMail #TBT. (Photo: File)

Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates are scaring potential CEO candidates away from Microsoft because they’re worried they’re going to get bullied by the duo. [WSJ]

Facebook is sunsetting its controversial Sponsored Stories ads in April. [Fast Company]

Google is adding a neat new feature to GMail by letting users access email addresses from Google+, so you can email anyone on the increasingly unavoidable social network. [Gizmodo]

Reading Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s explanation about his company’s surge pricing model still confuses us–probably because we got C’s in economics. [NYT]

This is how a blind man navigated CES. [Recode]


Booting Up: If You Are Wondering, Steve Ballmer Still Hasn’t Left Microsoft

Going to miss you. (Photo: Giant Bomb)

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer released his final letter to stockholders yesterday with no sign of when he’s going to leave. [AllThingsD]

According to planning documents, Facebook’s housing development has an area called the “Quad” and six-foot walls surrounding it. Is there at least an iced coffee kegerator? [Valleywag]

Here’s everything you need to know about those ridiculous 55 inch touch screens (they’re not iPads!) in the even more ridiculously titled “Fox News Deck.” [TechCrunch]

Broadcasters in Utah are suing Aereo using the same claim that the IAC-owned company is retransmitting its content without permission. [The Verge]

Beats Headphones is launching a music streaming service because that’s exactly what the world needs. [TNW]

Ballmer Time

Nobody Puts Ballmer In a Corner: Microsoft CEO’s Send-Off Includes Dancing to ‘I’ve Had the Time of My Life’ [Update]

Miss u boo (Photo: Wikimedia)

Last month, longtime Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced that he would be leaving the company within a year, and so the goodbyes began. The Verge reports that yesterday Mr. Ballmer held his final company meeting as CEO, and it sounds like he went out playing the role of Steve Ballmer, Tech Industry Character, to the hilt. Read More


Happy 153rd Birthday, Jane Addams: Google Is Maybe Running Out of Doodle Ideas


Google’s daily doodles often commemorate such worthy occasions as Malaysian Independence Day and Dr. Seuss’s birth. Some days, though, they leave us wondering if there is a secret committee of dads picking Doodle subjects. Today is one of those days.

On this lovely Friday, the Goog opted not to observe the official first day of being able to wear a pair of god-damn pants without breaking a sweat for Pete’s sake. Instead, they commemorated one of the most obscure occasions ever: Nobel prize winner Jane Addams’s 153rd birthday. Read More


Booting Up: Sheryl Sandberg Almost Blew Up Yahoo’s Purchase of Tumblr

Going to miss you. (Photo: Giant Bomb)

The departure of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was neither “planned nor as smooth as portrayed.” How befitting of the company. [AllThingsD]

Amazon Web Services went down for an hour Sunday and crippled Vine, Instagram and AirBnB. [GigaOM]

This unauthorized biography of Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer sheds more light on the Tumblr purchase. Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg left David Karp a voicemail that almost curtailed the deal. [Business Insider]

Netflix wants to remind you again that its ratings are irrelevant, dammit. [LA Times]

Of course Google is designing “self-driving robo taxis” because not even Uber is safe from the search giant’s impending world takeover. [CNet]

Ballmer Time

RAMPAGE! Steve Ballmer Bound and Determined to Bring Basketball to Seattle

Maybe tone it down just a tad.

Looks like we’ve got a real barn-burner on our hands!

For months, hedge funder Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer have worked to relocate the Sacramento Kings to Seattle, which has been NBA-less for five years. Their plan: to make the owners, the Maloofs, an offer they can’t refuse.  But the mayor of Sacramento–who happens to be former NBA star Kevin Johnson–doesn’t want the team going anywhere. He’s rounded up rival techies who might buy from the Maloofs and prepared a big bushel of subsidies for them. Last month, the league rejected the Seattle group’s request to move the team.

And so here we are, at loggerheads and due for another NBA meeting today. But Steve Ballmer doesn’t do gridlock. A source tells NBC Sports: Read More