1. Apple may exercise tight control over iPhone developer kit
2. George Bischof joins Meritech Capital Partners
3. “The many challenges of widgets”
4. Google’s Andy Rubin shows off Android
5. LiveJournal lands top advisers
6. Arrington holds forth
7. Did WordPress’ Mullenweg slap Fox News? Don’t think so
Apple may exercise tight control over iPhone developer kit – The company may make the iTunes store the hub for downloading and installing third-party applications for the iPhone. But it will have total say over which applications are included in the store; Applications also won’t have access to some iPhone accessory features. Also, the iPhone’s final software developer kit (SDK) may not be available until June, although there’s some sort of related event planned for March 6. The rumors surfaced on the iLounge blog, here. MG Siegler has more, blogging as ParisLemon.
Meritech Capital Partners names George Bischof as a managing director — Bischof was formerly a general partner at Focus Ventures, and had a hit with his investment in data storage company EqualLogic, which was bought by Dell for $1.4 billion in cash last November. The deal was the largest all-cash acquisition ever for a venture-backed firm (our coverage). Among other companies, he also invested in Wily Technology, which sold to Computer Associates for $375 million. He tells VentureWire that he will continue to invest in enterprise infrastructure, along with digital media and technology services, and that Meritech will give him “a broader platform” to do late-stage investing.
The many challenges of widgets — Forrester analyst and new media marketer Jeremiah Owyang posts a laundry list of problems facing widget-makers, from poor metrics to rule-changes on developer platforms, to weak monetization options. My view is that the problems reflect the early, sloppy stages of experimentation, and will matter less as widget companies evolve.
Meanwhile, Facebook continues to clamp down on spammy applications, to try to force application developers to only create apps that are good for users. It is reducing the number of invites a user can send friends for a given application, and it is making a “stop email” link appear above email messages sent via an application. More at Inside Facebook.
Google’s Andy Rubin shows off its mobile platform, Android, to the BBC — Here’s the video.
LiveJournal lands top advisers — The company, which sold to a Russian media firm last year, is making a point of stressing its independence. It is creating an advisory board that include sStanford law professor and digital activist Lawrence Lessig, tech visionary Esther Dyson, social network researcher Danah Boyd, along with LiveJournal founder (and current Google employee) Brad Fitzpatrick. ReadWriteWeb has more.
Michael Arrington holds forth — In this interview with Portfolio about life, Silicon Valley, and everything.
WordPress’ Mullenweg quoted as snubbing Fox, but misunderstood — Matt Mullenweg was quoted by CNET’s reporter somewhat strangely during a talk at the Future of Web Apps in Miami today. Mullenweg said WordPress now powers more than 2.5 million blogs, But then here’s what CNET reported, suggesting Mullenweg was taking a swipe at Fox:
“All these old-media companies are adding blogs like it’s going out of style,” he said, talking about how WordPress now powers blogs for The New York Times, CNN, and Fox News (“unfortunately,” he added on that last one).
Our own Matt Marshall was down in Miami, however, and interpreted Mullenweg’s comments much differently. Marshall knew the context because he’d caught up with Mullenweg during a five-hour delay on the tarmac up in SF on the way down. The conversation between the two Matts naturally turned toward blogging and how early bloggers such as Marshall (VentureBeat), GigaOm, Techcrunch and other were now being swarmed by blogs from large news organizations. So Mullenweg, later talking to a mass of small bloggers was basically empathizing with the small blogger just as he was with Marshall, saying it was unfortunate for them, the bloggers, but it was not intended to be a negative comment about Fox.