Dropbox CEO: Why search advertising failed us

Dropbox founder and chief executive Drew Houston offered some details this afternoon about how he grew the company to more than 4 million users. In its early days, the document synchronization startup did all the things that startups are “supposed” to do, like buying ads on Google’s search results through AdWords and hiring a public relations firm.

Microsoft’s online chief fights back against stodgy reputation

Qi Lu, the president of Microsoft’s online services’ group, talked about some big, visionary ideas today at the Accel Stanford Symposium — but one of the audience members sounded a little skeptical. Given Microsoft’s corporate culture, will those cool ideas ever be realized?

Twitter’s ad efforts revving up … slowly

After years of speculation and jokes about Twitter’s lack of a business model, the microblogging service finally started rolling out advertising products earlier this year. Today, the company’s vice president of engineering Michael Abbott said that even as Twitter continues its ad efforts, it’s moving very carefully.