Jeff Bezos

This morning I ate breakfast with Shawna O’Reilly from Mayo Clinic Ventures and the product manager of Web Sphere. This conference is a lot of fun.

Jeff Bezos is up now. Here are some Amazon stats:
61 million accounts, 10 billion in sales, seven countries, 1.1 million active seller accounts, 10 million square feet in fulfillment space.

Here are the more interesting stats:
200,000 register developers. 10 different web offerings. S3 let’s you store your crap very cheaply and easily. EC2 is a new offering – computers in the cloud. Costs about 70 bucks a month for the equivalent of your own server. This is an interesting offering that the CEO from smugmug.com and the creator of tickle.com raved about last night at dinner. This is a utility that lets small companies get access to powerful computing clusters that scale quickly. It also means that developers no longer have to worry about any of the IT issues that you typically deal with. Bezos calls it “muck.” It is all the crap you have to do that distracts from your core ideas. This is very cool. It makes me wonder if there is any chance Google would do the same thing since they have also figured out large scale clustered computing.

So why do this? “Why is a really good question. We’ve been doing this for eleven years. For several years we’ve been working on this services.” He said that he thinks web 2.0 is computers talking to computers. That is a definition I have not heard. Most people will tell you web 2.0 is user centric applications. “We doing this because we are good at it” and he said he thinks it will turn a profit and “why not?”

Amazon has a custom fulfillment center. Users can send items to their fulfillment center network. You send stuff to them. They will sell it and they will fulfill the order. This allows developers to write software that treats Amazon’s huge fulfillment centers as a peripheral like a printer. You write the code and it uses Amazon to send/receive your products.

For Amazon “the biggest cost is lack of utilization.” Amazon wants to use those assets to make money so they let others use their stuff. They are in the business to “serve” developers.

37 Signals – Jeff Bezos “I am going to learn a tremendous amount by working with those guys”

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