As a non-driver spending the week in San Francisco, I am loving UberX.
That’s the ride-sharing service from Uber, the newly ubiquitous limousine-taxi company.
Along with Lyft and Sidecar, it is one of three venture-backed, ride-sharing start-ups created in this city. They’re each pretty great.
But for New Yorkers used to hailing a yellow cab, every time you step into a crowdsourced car is a fresh challenge in etiquette.
For starters, where do you sit?
After a decade and a half of the Internet wreaking havoc on the way we live our lives, the literary world has decided it’s time to tackle its influence. Hard on the heels of Bleeding Edge, Thomas Pynchon’s take on Silicon Alley’s first tech boom, we have The Circle, a patched-together dystopian fantasy by Dave Eggers, who is quite clearly very worried about the pernicious influence of Facebook and its ilk.
Many, many words have already been devoted to the ways Mr. Eggers misunderstands Silicon Valley, and they’re justified. The novel reads like it’s cobbled together from what Mr. Eggers has overheard in the bars, coffee shops and parks of San Francisco. He’s nailed the sound of the tech world’s delusions of grandeur, but he doesn’t see them for the delusions they usually are.
A Million Eyerolls
Just when you thought the startup kids of the golden state couldn’t get any more insufferable, the San Francisco Chronicle writes a feature spotlighting young San Francisco professionals who have decided it’s cooler to live illegally in cars and RVs than rent the apartments they can afford.
NYC startup denizens, bust out the pom poms and the insults: Everlane, an online retailer specializing in really, really fancy t-shirts, is hosting a New York-based job fair in conjunction with Projective Space, the NYC coworking space. The point of the job fair? To convince engineers, designers and sales people that New York sucks and they should move to Los Angeles or San Francisco. (L.A.? Really?)
Startup founder Peter Shih ignited a West Coast firestorm yesterday after publishing a rant to Medium (now deleted) entitled “10 Things I Hate About You: San Francisco Edition.” It was a clumsy, failed attempt at “humorous satire” that read like an entitled douchebag flippantly complaining about serious systemic issues like homelessness. (We’re sure the defunding of San Francisco mental health facilities hasn’t contributed to the amount of mentally ill homeless citizens at all, for example.)
Starting today, thousands of New York’s outer borough residents who work in Manhattan are commuting via ferry instead, because some clever person decided, YEAH IT’S TOTALLY FINE IF WE SHUT DOWN THE R TRAIN FOR A GOOD LITTLE WHILE, BECAUSE NOBODY REALLY USES THAT, RIGHT?!
Thankfully, our good friends at Uber—sensing that San Franciscans might be jealous of New Yorkers’ sweet new aquatic ride—are offering Bay Area users a one-day opportunity to ride a swagged-out boat to work (just in time for all that BART strike talk).
With so many Kickstarter projects popping up every day, it’s getting almost impossible to make yours stand out. Luckily for one cash-strapped chef, Werner Herzog is a big fan of his salt. Seriously.
Angelo Garro, an Italian-American chef based in San Francisco, is seeking $30,000 to produce and distribute his organic salt, “Omnivore,” nationally. Getting Read More
From one of the more entertaining White House pool reports in recent memory, comes this dispatch about President Obama’s $35,800-per-plate ($5k to the campaign; the rest to the DNC) fundraiser in San Francisco this morning:
Mr. Obama was in the middle of his remarks when a woman in a white suit stood up and said, Read More
According to CB Richard Ellis, New York is projected to have the country’s second highest office rent growth in 2011, behind San Francisco.
CBRE noted that office rents were expected to grow for the first time in three years nationwide, though only modestly and that growth would be “limited to key markets,” before a more Read More
Alley Vs Valley
Foursquare is opening an office in San Francisco. On the one hand, this is great news, because it means the NY-based startup is expanding fast.
On the other hand, it’s kind of a downer, because as Foursquare made explicit in a blog post, New York’s tech scene just couldn’t provide the talent they Read More