TheDemo conferenceis no longer a unique launchpad for startup companies. These days it seems like there’s a startup launch event every couple of weeks, and plenty of opportunities in between these to get a new-product fix by visiting Kickstarter or Indiegogo. But because Demo attracts a broader range of companies than many of the startup launchpads—hardware and software, consumer and enterprise—it is a good place to take the temperature of the latest trends.
At this fall’s Demo, held last week in San Jose, my thermometer read cool in terms of breakthrough technologies or product categories, but hot in the area of fixing problems with the technologies already broadly used or rapidly proliferating. And fixing a problem that nobody else has addressed, even a small one, isn’t a bad way to build a successful company, PayPal founder and now-venture capitalist Peter Thiel pointed out to the thousand or so attendees. …[Read more]