What’s In A Name – Sharing Your Name With A Douche

A recently received the following email: Oct 29, 2018, 9:18 AM to glen From: The Other Andy Powers Email: Interested in: Message Body: Hi Mr. Hellman, I'm a different Andy Powers and I encountered your blog after looking curiously at others with my same name online. I am floored and sickened by the stories about the other "me" and others in their crew. I can't believe all that stuff really happened (meant only figuratively, as the details are quite clear and reinforced by SEC orders and the like). I'll have to keep aware of that AP and his digital presence, in case of misunderstanding about someone looking up my name online. How are you connected to those people? It took me a while to understand that those posts were part of your blog, not your Driven Forward business. Did you know them already or know others impacted by them? If the facts are so against them as all this, I'm also surprised that they can still appear successful to anyone else. It's nice to meet you. I'm glad you are recording the details of the stories and proofs behind them. At the least, I wanted to say hello, after reading all these crazy things this morning. Sincerely, The Other Andy Powers Just imagine being a...

Peter Corbett’s Ego

"At the end of June this year I retired from the company I had founded. Being a 38 year old retiree has its perks for sure, but I’m assuming most people don’t have a perspective on the challenges associated with giving up the profession/status/context/wealth-generation-machine that they’d been managing for decades. In fact, this is a devilishly difficult thing to do for one super complicated reason: we subconsciously construct an Ego that enables us in the journey we set out for — and that Ego doesn’t just go away over night. It fights you— till its death or yours, and usually wins." Peter Corbett on his Massive Ego - The Year My Ego Died (+18 Book Recommendations) Peter Corbett is a unique and talented man. A man who has achieved numerous accolades and some of them were not self-awarded, including being named Mr. January in the 2019 Clowns and Crooks of DCTech Calendar. At 38 years old he successfully exited (with no sarcasm like when I say Evan Burfield or Danny Boice exited from a company) from a genuinely impressive company that he built on the back of impressive creativity, hard work, intelligence and an ego so big that it's gravitational force often interferes with...

Startup Dictionary – An Urban-Dictionary for Startups

Startup speek is bullshit speek that requires translation. So I've created a Startup Dictionary to be like the Urban Dictionary for Startups. I hope this Startup Dictionary helps you distill truth from doublespeak. Agile - The excuse developers use for coding without a plan and running around in circles Artificial Intelligence (AI) - The living embodiment of the Shakespeare line, "first kill all the lawyers." It is AI that will replace the lawyers, accountants, and marketeers.  Look for a new AI app to answer spam email and phone calls. Award Winning - Pre-revenue company Big Data - Big deal Blockchain - Something that someday is going to be extremely valuable and important to people other than those people getting rich  running blockchain conferences Bootstrap - An idea either so good that it funds itself or so bad that no one will fund it Business Developer - Someone who will be making phone calls all day, every day to people who don't pick up the phone Change Agent - A nag or in Yiddish, Yenta Crypto-Currency - See Blockchain DCInno - Snot Rag Disruptive - Makes everything that nobody used or needed obsolete Elevator Pitch - Cramming 10 minutes of abstract meaningless jargon into a 30-second sentence that could be repeated in less than 30,...

Driven Forward DCTech 2019 Gift Calendar

What's the perfect holiday gift for DCTech Startup Fans? It's the Mr Cranky, 2019 Gift Calendar! Feel free to print this out and make your own or if you prefer, you can contact me and order your officially printed version. Printed, bound and sent to your address for just $19.99. Want to order one, contact me here. Tell me how many you want and I'll be in touch. Remember, if you'd like one, contact me here!...

The Heisenberg Institute is Seeking Nominations for the 2019 #DCTech Heisenberg Fellowship Cohort

The prestigious Heisenberg Institute is seeking nominations for their 2019 Heisenberg Fellowship DC Cohort. As many of you know the Heisenberg Institute has been sponsoring leaders of Innovation with their IOTA Heisenberg Fellowship program. The IOTA Heisenberg Fellowship is annually granted to four deserving fellows. The IOTA Fellowships are granted in the following four areas: I Fellows - Innovators O Fellows - Outside the Box Thinkers T Fellows - Thought Leaders A Fellows - Change Agents Former fellows include some of DC's best and brightest including, EverFi's - Tom Davidson, Proresource's - Judy Schram, nVite's - Marty Ringlein (See the complete list here). Fellows must reside within 100 miles of DC or know someone who does. Have made a demonstrable contribution to innovation in the DC region. Unlike past Heisenberg Fellowship honorees, the Institute has decided that all future fellows must be more interested in padding their curriculum vitae as opposed to actually accomplishing anything. The Heisenberg Institute, Heisenberg Fellowship nomination committee found that past nominees were too busy working and accomplishing things that it was a distraction from the true responsibility of a fellow which was to look like you were accomplishing something. Werner Duderstadt, executive director of the institute was quoted as saying, "We want Heisenberg Fellows...

Mr Cranky’s Got Photoshop Skills Not!

I don't know if you noticed but Mr. Cranky has mad photoshop skills! Which would be true if by mad you mean someone whose mind has ceased to function coherently. Okay, I'm too cheap to pay for photoshop and too lazy to learn how to use the tool anyway. I'm going to give you the trade secret behind my top top-notch production team.. me. The process goes like this. Find a picture. Put it in powerpoint. Use the remove background tool in powerpoint. Do photo and text mashups in powerpoint. Then cut the layered production and paste it into Windows Paint. Save and voila...

Startup Sh#t Heard In #DCTech Lately

I've been out and about DCTech the past weeks and have heard an assload of bad pitches mixed in with an occasional good pitch. Some of the pitching clowns said some the craziest things and some pretendpreneurs drive me crazy with the silliness of it all...

Random Rants of a Cranky Old Fart

I have been collecting a bunch of Random Rants that don't warrant a singular blog post so I thought I'd get them all out at once.  So here we go with Random Rants of a Cranky Old Fart. The Peter Noce Affair - My Mobile Phone Rings...

Blockchain Blockheads

It happened with Crowd Funding, it happened with Beanie Babies, it happened with Tulips and it's happening now with cryptocurrency and blockchain. Whenever there is a new "Big Thing." Whenever it's going to be the "Next Big Thing." There's a group of know-next-to-nothings, willing to monetize a know-nothing's greed in order to profit from shit they do not understand. Now I'm not saying Blockchain isn't going to be big. I think it's going to be HUGE! I'm talking HUGE with a silent H. Yet, when there is a gold rush, there is a rush for charlatans to insert themselves between the greedy and their wallets. You can tell when a market is heating up with grifters when there are more conferences on the market then there are marketeers. Take the recent deluge of Blockchain conferences booking any speaker who can spell blokchain (which leaves me out and thus why I'm ranting here) filling the stage with myopic one-eyed men (which is an expression that leaves out one-eyed women or even the more woke one-eyed-they) that rush into these nascent (which is a word that I have no idea what it means but man doesn't it make me sound smart) in an effort to fleece...

The TrustFuels Tesla Give-away!

For the last few years, I've been railing against the crooks, criminals, and clowns of DCTech and you know what? I think I got it wrong. I should learn from the insane clown posse that is DCTech and create my own Blue Ocean version of a Wolves of Startupland Startup. [caption id="attachment_77580" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] DC Tech Meetup[/caption] That's why I looked at two of DCTech's most "successful" startups. That is if success is to be judged by PR and income for the founders and not building a valuable company. With this in mind, I decided to create my own version of a DCTech success. First, let's look at the companies from which I modeled my new company, TrustFuels: Trustify - A company that raised $5 Million and spent approximately 30% of the money to deliver their product. The company is wildly unprofitable, hemorrhaging investor cash and yet the criminals who run the company, Cruella Jen Mellon and her husband Prison Tatted Danny Boice (Remember when he wasted investor money to sue me for telling the truth and then ran away with his tail between his stubby legs? That was fun!) live like Royalty. This company is reported nearly out of cash and needs to raise more...