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February 11, 2008


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Who are these colorfully dressed upscale people we found yesterday in McLean and why are they looking so purposeful on a Sunday afternoon-are they off to an Obama caucus or something?  Nah, it's former webMethods founder Phillip Merrick, right, and one-time UUNet head of sales Clint Heiden, preparing to take the wraps off a company today that they semi-secretly launched 13 months ago in beta.  Their baby, VisualCV, based in Reston Town Center and now 20 employees and $5M in funding, aims to revolutionize the lowly resume.


Phillip tells us their better mousetrap is meant to substitute for initial screening interviews:  Candidates won't just post bios, but take advantage of interactivity to show samples of their work. You can also use video (esp. if you're under 35 and know what you're doing) and replicate common interview questions or talk about your passion for engineering. Philip says he's hired thousands and could have saved gobs of time. Clint, who'll be CEO, brought the idea to Phillip, who became an active venture-investor after leaving webMethods in 2004. Phillip will be chairman but expects to work at it full-time. He marvels that in building his last company it took him years to find strategic partners like SAP, but that this new company comes out of the gate with global headhunting giant Heidrick & Struggles as investor and customer.  Our modest elevator speech suggestion?  "YouTube for job hunters!"



Point, click, and buy!  That's the vision for mobile we gleaned at Potomac Tech Wire's "What's Next in Wireless" Thursday morning at the Tysons Ritz.  Sure, you'll still be able to talk on the phones of the future, but you might be too busy using them as a credit card, movie player, or TV. Above, moderator Paul Sherman (due to his official position apparently having to don a tie) joins Mobilians International CEO Pragnesh Shah, Millennial Media CEO Paul Palmieri, Core Capital Partners managing director Tom Wheeler, SquareLoop CEO Tom Stroup, and Distributive Networks CEO Kevin Bertram.


AOL's Linda Braskamp, Distributive Network's Kevin Yam, AOL's Beth Jacobs, and Ciabe's David Park.  Beth said mobile advertising is key to AOL's future plans. And, while we don't pretend to know FCC lingo, we noted that like all wireless people, everyone seemed to be mentioning "open access" in every breath, but saying new rules will have to wait on the November elections.  (Speaking of which, Kevin's company is handling text messaging for Obama and even offering Barack ringtones-speech snippets set to hip hop.)


We spotted these four Nextel alumni post-breakfast chatting about how "things have changed-but also stayed the same":  AOL's Jim Abramson, Sprint's Colleen Parent, Northhighland's Gayle Sweeney, and Michelle Flynn.  Gayle tells us that with the field consolidated to the big three (Sprint/Nextel, Verizon, and ATT), it's a lot harder for upstarts to get a foothold.  Thus her latest project: helping big cable companies like Cox and Time-Warner build business in the telecom world.



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