Booting Up: Stop Watching YouTube and Get Some Sunshine Edition

The ghost haunting the Valley. (Photo: Wikipedia)

Are we in the twilight of Silicon Valley? Yammer CEO David Sacks seems to think so. [TechCrunch]

It’s like the worst Cosmo quiz of all time: Is your Web 2.0 company an Amazon, or a [AllThingsD]

In July, Americans watched 36.9 billion online videos. Americans should probably go outside more often. [CNET]

Here is a terrifying platoon of noodle-slicing robots. [Eater]

Internet jokerster Tom Scott pretended to put the Ecuadorian embassy on Airbnb. [Twitter]

Apropos of very little, we give you Tim Berners-Lee’s original World Wide Web announcement, for your nostalgic pleasure. [Google Groups]

Microprocessing pioneer Victor Poor has passed away. [New York Times]

Closing the Gender Gap: A Peek Inside Programs to Train Female Developers

The 20 Girls Who Code participants working out of AppNexus's Flatiron office (Photo:

“Maliyah, step away from the mouse!” called Ashley Gavin, a software engineer at the MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory and instructor at the Girls Who Code summer program. Maliyah Greene, the recipient of Ms. Gavin’s reprimand, reluctantly tore herself away from Photoshop to come and talk to Betabeat. We were sitting in AppNexus’s Flatiron office, watching her fellow Girls Who Code students work on virtually tagging brick walls with their names. “It’s not as hard as I thought it would be,” Ms. Greene smiled.

She is one of 20 high school girls who gave up summer vacation to learn about app development, robotics, web design and other topics at Girls Who Code, a summer computer-engineering program for girls.

Though this is its first summer in existence, Girls Who Code already boasts executives from Gilt Groupe, Twitter and General Electric on its board and has been working with AppNexus and other New York startups throughout the summer. Read More

Weird Acquisitions

Microsoft Acquires Yammer for $1.2 Billion

Yammer CEO David Sacks (Photo: Twitter)

As has been widely rumored over the last few weeks, Microsoft entered into an agreement today to acquire Yammer, a social network for enterprise clients.

According to a press release sent out moments ago:

Microsoft Corp. and Yammer Inc. today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire Yammer, a leading provider of enterprise social networks, for $1.2 billion in cash. Yammer will join the Microsoft Office Division, led by division President Kurt DelBene, and the team will continue to report to current CEO David Sacks….

Yammer will continue to develop its standalone service and maintain its commitment to simplicity, innovation and cross-platform experiences. Moving forward, Microsoft plans to accelerate Yammer’s adoption alongside complementary offerings from Microsoft SharePoint, Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics and Skype.

Everybody get on your feet!


Booting Up: Microsoft Is Making Moves Again Edition

More like Steve "Baller," are we right? (

Game developers are bailing on Google+. Frankly, we’re impressed they stuck it out this long. [AllThingsD]

Microsoft reportedly close to buying Yammer, a social network just for work. [Wall Street Journal]

Speaking of Microsoft, are they introducing a tablet at their event on Monday? [TheWrap]

Brace for a legal battle over the Facebook IPO. [Dealbook]

Speaking of legal battles, Barclays doesn’t have a lot of faith in Aereo’s long-term prospects.  [PaidContent]

Part of the reason companies like Twitter are annexing downtown San Francisco? The rent’s too damn high in Palo Alto. [GigaOm]

Don’t use Skype in Ethiopia. [TechCrunch]

Sure Okay

Lavish Dotcom Parties Are Back, Baby

Happy birthday. (Photo:

Rumors that Microsoft is about to acquire Yammer for a cool billion dollars or so are zipping fast and furious around the Internet. That sure would be a delightful belated birthday present for Yammer CEO David Sachs, who turned 40 back on May 25. And if Business Insider is correct about the plans for his birthday party, he’ll be celebrating in high style.

According to their source, who is unidentified and God only knows how credible, the festivities will be held at Los Angeles’ Fleur de Lys mansion (worth no less than $125 million). Guests will apparently be required to 18th century costume, which, we’re not even sure where one would acquire such a thing? Snoop Dogg will reportedly be performing (no word whether he’ll also be required to appear in period attire, though.)

Here’s hoping there’ll be a little sing-along: Read More