Now that the news is finally out, congratulations to both Flickr and Bloglines on being acquired! They are the best web startups I've seen in the last year. Great products, well executed, plugged into the blogosphere publicity engine without pandering to it. They both showed that a small company with the right people can build out a major service in a year. And if you believe the rumours, they built a lot of value quickly. I think it's interesting they chose to be acquired instead of going the venture capital route.
Two of the best talks at ETech were Stewart on Flickr and Mark on Bloglines. Both of them gave direct, honest descriptions of how they built their companies and what social and technical challenges they faced. Great information if you're of a mind to start your own business, along with Marc's VC funding for geeks.