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    Sample Email Newsletter TechNews - Friday, February 27, 2004
    Copyright (c) 2004 by
    ISSN: 1524-6736
    Sponsored by:
    PricewaterhouseCoopers' Vision To Reality Program for Emerging Tech
    Companies ( 
      --Interview: Dan Herchenroether, Author of Selling Air
      --VeriSign Sues ICANN
      --Ixia Adds SONET Testing Tools
      --Kofax Announces Document Capture Solution
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    Interview: Dan Herchenroether, Author of Selling Air
    I'm diverging today from my usual interviews of CEOs, venture capitalist,
    and others in the local high tech industry to interview Dan Herchenroether,
    author of Selling Air ( Dan contacted me and sent over
    a copy of his book, a fictional account of selling enterprise software. I'm
    usually just a nonfiction person (business and technical books), but I was
    impressed enough by the book to read it all the way through a few weekends
    BK: What's your background, and why did you decide to write the book?
    DH: My 20 year career in software was pretty evenly split between corporate
    systems (mostly financial services) and pre-sales systems engineering.  In
    IT, I worked on projects such as bond and mortgage security modeling and
    risk management.  In sales, I worked for NeXT, Active Software and Altoweb.
     I was the first SE hired at Active and helped build the sales team.
    I've always been an avid reader and dabbled in some writing.  After
    deciding that I had had enough of the rigors of working for startups and
    constant travel, I decided to get serious about getting a writing career
    off the ground.  Following the advice to "write about what you know" I
    decided to use my experience in software sales as the basis for a novel
    about the 
    tech bubble period.  I'm finding that there's almost a nostalgia -
    certainly in the sales fraternity - about the insanity of the 90s as the
    realization sinks in that we probably won't see a market quite like that
    ever again.
    BK: In your book one of your characters is a sales person who "bends the
    rules" to win deals. Did you base that one on actual experience?
    DH: I assume you're speaking of Tom Gatto.  Just about everything that
    happens in Selling Air is derived from personal experience or relayed from
    sources.  The characters are mostly composites (have to protect the guilty,
    afterall) but are drawn from people I worked with or sold to.  Gatto,
    however, is fairly close to one individual I worked with, particularly the
    womanizing.  The guy truly would sell his grandmother if it meant making an
    extra bonus.
    BK: I thought the book was great, and worthy of a big publisher--why did you 
    decide to self-publish instead of going through a major publisher?
    DH: I spent about six months trying to go the traditional publishing route
    of chasing agents but there was zero interest.  What limited feedback 
    I received can be summed up by saying they "just don't get it".  They 
    seem to appreciate just how the software industry is, and that people in
    software - and more broadly, high tech - like to read about themselves.  I
    decided that I'd just have to prove to them that my story is viable.  I
    chose to publish via print-on-demand because it was low risk, low cost to
    startup and they handle the retail transactions.  It's worked out pretty
    well so far but I will probably switch to become my own publisher because
    the margins in POD aren't that great.
    BK: What do you think readers are most drawn to in your book? 
    DH: The answer is twofold.  First, people in the industry see themselves in
    the book regardless of whether they lived through the tech bubble in sales,
    IT or are newbies to the software game.  I've recognized for some time that
    people in the software - or more broadly the high-tech - industry likes to
    read about themselves.  With respect to more recent arrivals to the business, 
    more than one reader has said it should be used as a training manual.
    Second, and this is the most heartening development, readers from outside
    the industry are fascinated by the strategy and tactics depicted in the
    book.  I was afraid that there might be too much technical detail in the
    book.  Anyway, these are people who watched from the sidelines as the
    dot-com rage turned to dot-bomb and wondered what was going on.
    BK: Do you think it's much like the reason people read Dilbert--seeing a
    bit  of their own lives in your characters?
    DH: Yes, but I didn't have to be as satirical as Scott Adams.  The truth
    was a self-parody.
    BK: You've included lots of "tricks of the trade" of sales. I've been 
    lots of sales and marketing books lately and none have actually covered what 
    you end up doing to win a deal as well as your book. Have you ever thought of 
    putting those together as a nonfiction volume?
    DH: I don't think I could keep a straight face writing something like that.
     It's hard for me to take this stuff too seriously.  The reps and sales 
    managers who tried to adhere to some "system" usually tossed it out the
    window by the final month of the quarter.  I have to say, though, that more
    than one agent said I was stupid for doing a fiction piece.  Further
    evidence that mainstream publishing "doesn't get it"
    BK: What's next for you--are you working on another book?
    DH: Selling Air is the first installment in a trilogy.  It tracks our
    companies during late startup mode.  The next book, tentatively titled
    Paper Millions, explores the experience of going public and the temptations
    of inflated stock prices.  The third will track our heroes and villains
    through the tech crash.  My original idea was to put all that into Selling
    Air but it would have been a thousand pages so I figured I'd get three
    books out of the material.
    BK: Thanks!
    Find yourself some outsourced software development resources:
    VeriSign Sues ICANN
    Internet domain registrar VeriSign is again going up against the Internet's
    key nonprofit oversight organization, Marina del Rey-based Internet
    Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), claming that the body
    is slow and inconsistent. VeriSign has sued in Los Angeles requesting
    damages and injunctive relief against ICANN. VeriSign has consistently
    clashed with ICANN and others over what many have seen as aggressive
    tactics to claim Internet territory. Last fall, VeriSign launched
    SiteFinder, a bid to redirect 
    mistyped URLs to its own sites, but retreated after broad complaints and
    uproar in the Internet community.
    Ixia Adds SONET Testing Tools
    Calabasas-based Ixia ( has shipped a new network card
    driver for its IxANVL protocol conformance testing software. The software
    supports testing of OC-48 and OC-192 Packet over Sonet (POS) networks, and
    the new
    driver extends testing capability to new high speed network interfaces,
    including 10 Gig Ethernet, ATM, T1/E1, and much more.
    Kofax Announces Document Capture Solution
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    Upcoming Events This Month 
    Benjamin F. Kuo's Calendar of Southern California Technology Events 
    Submit your events at least two weeks in advance to: 
    February 27, -- Where is Nano Going? San Fernando Valley
    Engineers' Council; IEEE, SME, and AIAA. In this symposium the current
    state of nanotechnology in the United States, and specifically in the Sann
    Fernando Valley will be discussed. See
    February 27, Los Angeles -- Seventh Annual Corporate Governance and Equity
    Offerings Conference. UCLA Anderson School of Management in cooperation
    with the Nasdaq and the National Venture Capital Association. This event
    will feature top-level speakers addressing various board-level issues
    focusing on the best practices and emerging trends in corporate governance
    and the issuance of equity. This event opens with the Directors? Networking
    Dinner on February 26th and continues on February 27th with a one-day
    conference and the Sixth Annual NVCA Los Angeles Networking Luncheon. See
    February 28, West Los Angeles -- Growth Capital Conference. See
    March 3, Newport Beach -- "Women's Advancement Network Innovation Workshop"
    An exciting workshop designed to get your brain sparking with new ideas as
    well as marketing strategies for your innovations. Lynda Lawrence, graduate
    of Harvard's Executive Program in Innovations and Organizational Change
    will be conducting this hands-on workshop. The event is part of WAN's first
    anniversary celebration and includes an evening of networking,
    entertainment and dinner. See
    March 4, Inland Empire -- ATI Achievement in Technical Ingenuity Awards
    luncheon. IETechSource. Contact Brian Underhill at
    March 6, Santa Barbara -- "Entrepreneurship 101 Conference" UCSB Center
    Entrepreneurship and Engineering Management (CEEM). See 
    March 10-11, Newport Beach -- MediaMorphosis, a brainshare and thinkfest on
    the future of media. The American Press Institute is bringing together
    leading executives, innovators and researchers to share insights, promote
    cross-industry relationships and facilitate strategic thinking on consumer
    media emerging from enabling technologies. See
    March 10, Irvine -- "Beckman Laser Institute Tour" Optical Society of
    Southern California, LEOS-LA. Bruce Tromberg, UCI Beckman Laser Institute.
    March 10, San Diego -- "Essential Business IP and Regulatory Issues for
    Emerging Life Sciences Companies" San Diego RTA. In order to succeed, an
    emerging life sciences company team must craft and implement a
    comprehensive business plan, protect its valuable intellectual property,
    and navigate through the complex regulatory waters posed by the FDA
    approval process. They must plan a strategy for assuring that Medicare and
    other government programs will pay for its product. See 
    March 11-12, Simi Valley -- "Prep Course for CSTE" SCQAA-San Fernando
    Valley. Certified Software Test Engineer (CSTE) Prep Course. See
    NEW March 11, Los Angeles -- "Preparing the Financial Model Forecast" 
    workshop will show you how to build a financial forecast model. Using
    Excel, you will learn how to build your forecast from the bottom up, taking
    the primary elements of your business (sales, cost of goods sold, staffing
    and overhead) and translating them into a forecasted Income Statement, Cash
    Flow Statement and Balance Sheet in a format that potential investors will
    find attractive. See
    March 15, Los Angeles -- Asia/Pacific Business Outlook 2004 conference.
    USC. Gain insights on the entire Asian market in just two Days. See
    March 16, San Diego -- "Preparing for and Negotiating the Sale of Your
    Private Company" San Diego RTA. Your private company is far more likely to
    be acquired than to go public in an IPO, particularly under current market
    conditions. Therefore, it is critical that you understand early on the
    steps that you should take to prepare your company for an acquisition. It
    also is extremely valuable to have an understanding of the key deal terms
    and contractual provisions on which you should focus. See 
    March 16, Los Angeles -- Asia/Pacific Business Outlook 2004 conference.
    USC. Gain insights on the entire Asian market in just two Days. See
    NEW March 16, Costa Mesa -- Orange Coast Venture Group Monthly Breakfast
    Program. Companies seeking growth capital need to better understand what it
    REALLY means when they accept an investment from an institutional venture
    capital firm. All-star? panel of prominent SoCal VC?s and experienced,
    venture-backed entrepreneur CEOs: Lee Bailey, Partner, Rustic Canyon
    Partners; Tom Gephart, Ventana Capital Management; Michael Kleine,
    President and CEO of Micro Vention; Inc.; Gene Wang, Chairman and CEO of
    Bitfone Corporation; moderator John Whates, Partner, Deloitte. See
    March 17, Irvine -- "Tech Business Planning for Growth" TBCF. Business
    Planning for growing tech companies. See
    March 17, Camarillo -- IEEE Buenaventura Microwave Theory and Techniques
    Society. Dr. Chanh Nyugen, Global Communication Semiconductor. Email
    March 17, Irvine -- "Larta University Entrepreneur Series # 9: Attracting
    Capital: Financing Strategies for the New Venture" You will learn what is
    required to approach each financing source, federal funding, bank lending,
    and angel financing, and when not to waste your time. Emerging companies
    need strong knowledge of what are the most realistic options available for
    financing in the current marketplace. Also learn internal financing such as
    partnering with customers, bootstrapping, and leveraging. See:
    March 17, Irvine -- "Rapid Product Development" PDMA SoCal. Are you
    wondering how to squeeze more time out of your product development
    schedules? Attendees from the greater Southern California area will hear
    from industry experts and practitioners on what works, and doesn?t work,
    for speeding time-to-market, reducing total costs, and improving quality.
    Featured speakers will include a consulting company focused on managing for
    project success, an expert in breakthrough approaches to software
    engineering, and a pioneer of project management for quality rapid product
    development. Following the presentations the event will culminate in a
    panel discussion that will include the speakers and executive-level
    practitioners. See
    March 18, Santa Monica -- "Larta University Entrepreneur Series # 9:
    Attracting Capital: Financing Strategies for the New Venture" You will
    learn what is required to approach each financing source, federal funding,
    bank lending, and angel financing, and when not to waste your time.
    Emerging companies need strong knowledge of what are the most realistic
    options available for financing in the current marketplace. Also learn
    internal financing such as partnering with customers, bootstrapping, and
    leveraging. See:
    March 18, Pacific Palisades -- "PIPEs (private placement for public
    equity)" Los Angeles Venture Association. PIPEs are the hottest financing
    vehicles in today's capital markets. More private companies are "going
    public" through reverse mergers and other non-IPO strategies to take
    advantage of PIPE financings and other benefits available to
    publicly-traded companies. With the closing of the IPO market for the small
    to medium size public offering, the reverse merger/PIPE strategy is
    replacing the IPO as a financing strategy and a liquidity event. See 
    March 18, Irvine -- "Building Successful Web Services" Join TBCF for an
    exciting evening with an expert panel to discuss both the technology and
    the business issues behind successful Web Services. How do competing
    standards affect the choices you need to make? How can Web Services and XML
    technologies significantly improve your data agility and return on
    investment. If you're planning your business around Web Services, what are
    the pitfalls to watch for? Think you know the answers? You might be
    surprised. Come and see how your projects compare to successful Web
    Services. And see how the direction of the industry today will impact your
    decisions tomorrow. See
    March 19, Thousand Oaks -- Ventura Highway Thunderous Thursdays. Cathy
    Severson, a professional career counselor and coach will speak. Cathy has
    developed successful programs and tools to assist individuals in attaining
    their career goals and life?s purpose. Cathy has authored numerous
    career/job search books and articles. See
    NEW March 20, Los Angeles -- "Preparing the Financial Model Forecast" 
    NEW March 22, Los Angeles -- "Preparing the Financial Model Forecast" 
    March 23, Sheraton Four Points Hotel, Monrovia -- "Editing" Society for
    Technical Communications, San Gabriel Valley. Add this important skill to
    your resume. See
    NEW March 23, Santa Ana -- Corporate Investment and Strategic Alliance
    Conference. Meet 25+ Corporations Making Investments And Doing Strategic
    Alliances With Companies Like Yours. The CISA Conference is dedicated
    exclusively to companies seeking corporate funding and/or strategic
    alliances from Fortune 1000, Nasdaq 100, International 200 and other large
    public and private companies. Attendees are companies seeking a corporate
    investment or strategic alliance. Panelists are major public and private
    corporations investing and doing alliances with emerging and growing
    companies. See
    NEW March 24, Irvine -- "Venture Financing vs. Bootstrapping" Hisanic-Net.
    This event will showcase two successful and dynamic Hispanic entrepreneurs
    who will share with attendees their insights on funding early stage
    companies. John Garcia, a private investor, venture capitalist and serial
    entrepreneur will share his thoughts on how to successfully seek and
    receive venture capital. Reynaldo Gil, President of Hispanic Net and
    founder of Commendo Software will share his wisdom on starting and building
    a company utilizing the "Bootstrapping method". This program will be
    followed by an opportunity to network with some of Southern California's
    well-known Hispanic business people, who are committed to bringing the
    success achieved in Silicon Valley to the Southern California region. See
    NEW March 24, San Diego -- "The Venture Capital Process" San Diego RTA.
    Raising money in today's market is no easy task, but it can be done if you
    focus on the right things and avoid common deal-killers. This workshop will
    provide you with information, expertise, and knowledge to prepare you for
    raising capital from venture capital funds. See 
    NEW March 24, Costa Mesa -- "Guerrilla Strategy: Evaluating Strategic
    Alternatives" OC Chapter. If you seek a different strategic course to
    rapidly grow and expand the business into new areas, this session can help
    you learn how to evaluate strategic alternatives and avoid sinking the
    enterprise. See
    NEW March 24, Culver City -- "Cyber Crime, Privacy, Crisis Response" AITP
    LA. Dr. Joel Rakow, who leads the eCrimes Practice of Tatum Partners, will
    describe the unique characteristics of e-crimes, the impact on corporations
    of recent legislation such as CA SB 1386, GLB, HIPAA, and Sarbanes-Oxley
    acts, and will present a comprehensive approach to enterprise risk
    management. See
    NEW March 24, Los Angeles -- Optical Fiber Conference. Fiber Optic
    Component Companies using and selling optical components, such as lasers,
    receivers, tunable filters, tunable lasers, DWDM components. Email Tim Gase
    Sponsored by:
    PricewaterhouseCoopers' Vision To Reality Program for Emerging Tech
    Companies ( 
    Email for more information about sponsoring this
    Sign up for the by visiting
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    Legal Notices
    While Benjamin Kuo and used their best efforts in
    collecting and preparing the information published herein,
    does not assume, and hereby disclaims, any liability for any loss or
    damage caused by errors or omissions, whether such errors or omissions
    resulted from negligence, accident or other causes. - Dedicated to High Tech in Southern California