Hopeful entrepreneurs look for warm reception at Demo 09

Cloud computing startups unveil new products and services at the conference in Palm Desert

Like the proverbial mail carrier who travels through rain and sleet and snow to keep their appointed rounds, entrepreneurs will not be stopped by the worst of economic storms.

And so it is that more than 60 hopeful companies come to the Demo 09 conference in Palm Desert, Calif., to unveil their latest products and services.

[ For more on AppZero, see "Virtual server appliance tools leave out the OS" | Take a look back at Demo Fall 08 and Tech Crunch 50 ]

Among the hopefuls looking for investors in these hard times is AppZero, a cloud computing infrastructure company with a technology that gives developers the ability to create VVAs (Virtual Application Appliances).

The company claims no competition at this point for its unique capability to take server-based applications and to deliver them to any environment including datacenter, hosting provider, cloud infrastructure, or cloud-to-cloud. The VAAs use virtualization and "encapsulation" technology.

Another Web 2.0 newbie presenting this week is deskNET and its application, dubbed sobees. 

DeskNET hopes sobees will fill an important niche in cloud applications by allowing them to be managed on the desktop. In this case, managing also means giving users the ability to work offline. The application allows for data sharing as well. The program claims to aggregate all of a user's online content and, through the use of screen capture technology, make it available for sharing using drag and drop. 

More sharing is promised from Citrix Online, which certainly is not a startup but is the sole investor in a new service called GoView. The GoView service will allow companies to inexpensively create screencasts for presentation, product demos, and application training.

Still more sharing comes from a company with a very promising name, HowSimple, which is offering not a Web 2.0 application but a desktop application that will allow users to create and share online almost any kind of content. The technology HowSimple calls Q Format provides multiple concurrent panel viewing. Future upgrades will include the integration of online and offline content.

Rounding out the business products and services at Demo is a company that calls itself what it is, DDC (Document Depository Corporation). DDC is a hosted depository for the kinds of documents companies are required to keep due to the latest Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and e-discovery regulations coming down from the feds.

Application modules include Corporate Governance, Contract Tracker, and Multi Entity Legal Negotiation. The names may not cause a flutter in the heart, but having these kinds of documents accessible at a moment's notice could save millions of dollars in fines and court costs. DCC also provides disaster recovery and security, but as always, it is best to check with your attorney before you put any sensitive company files and documents into a hosted environment.