No. 44: Spy’s gone, Spielberg cashes out and the very strange sounds of space

BUT THE RANGERS ARE SOLID: Cablevision CEO James Dolan has called for consolidation of the local cable markets, but it increasingly looks like his firm won’t be part of it. Analysts softened their view on the company last week, citing Cablevision’s already deep market penetration and competition from Verizon’s FiOS, which has begun to affect cash flow.

Credit Suisse launched coverage with an underperform rating and Citigroup did a downgrade to sell. Ouch.

Another problem: Sling TV, the four-month-old streaming television service, already has attracted 250,000 paying subscribers who are generating more than $5M a month. Re/code

A special welcome to new readers, including Chris, Lydia, Carol, Jayette, Brian, Helen, Nel, Emily, Bob, Gary, Mark, Cliff, Charles, Tom and many others. Don’t forget to send us tips, news, ideas, criticisms and corrections via

THE DEBRIEF: Leo Guthart, the dean of Long Island venture capitalists, talks about Topspin Partners’ launch, its investment strategy and what he likes about the local innovation economy. Hint: It’s pretty much all about science. Innovate

THEY HAVE LIFTOFF: LaunchPad Huntington has signed a rush of new tenants in the last few weeks, including three from Brooklyn. Director Phil Rugile chalks up some of the co-working space’s success to events that go beyond the narrow focus of technology startups. Innovate

FROM THE NORTH SHORE-LIJ PLAYBOOK: NYU Langone Medical Center has acquired Huntington Medical Group, one of Long Island’s largest practices with 42 physicians and more than 300 employees, giving it a multi-specialty operation in Suffolk County.

HE’S BAAACK: Walt Handelsman’s latest cartoon is up on the Long Island Index blog.

ABOUT OUR SPONSORCarter, DeLuca, Farrell & Schmidt LLP is Long Island’s premier patent and IP law firm, with rich experience in biotechnology, chemistry, electrical, computer software, mechanical, optical, physics and more. Please visit

THE SPY WHO IS NOW OUT IN THE COLD: Jack Barsky, the former Soviet agent profiled last month on 60 Minutes, has left his $300K job at the company that runs the New York power grid. Executives said they learned of Barsky’s past from the TV news report. For the record, he was never charged with anything.

CLICKED IN: Top click-throughs on last week’s newsletters: The Debrief with Mark Lesko, our look at Long Island’s top Kickstarter campaigns, and America’s newstartup capital – Austin.

HOT EVENT: Nassau County technology job fair, June 11, Cradle of Aviation Museum, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., 70 vendor slots sold out and we suspect they won’t be doing it there next year, attendance free to job seekers, sponsors still very welcome, register or inquire here.

MORE BUCKS FOR BUFFALO: After winning a record $130M lottery jackpot, a Staten Island plumber plans a trip upstate to see “you know, Buffalo, the woods.” NYT

STAYING CONNECTED: Hauppauge sporting goods firm Lacrosse Unlimited has tried all the usual social plays, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, even a giant texting program. In the end, it’s stuck with West Sayville-based Nodify, which uses Wi-Fi to track customers’ comings and goings and watches when they buy. And when they don’t, which is also valuable data. Newsday

VISIT US: Between newsletters, check out breaking news at And don’t forget to like us on Facebook.

BELABORING THE HOUSING PROBLEM: If you’ve gotten a whiff of the tiff between NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, you know it’s all about the use of union help on affordable housing projects. Cuomo’s passionately for, de Blasio’s agin it, citing costs. And they are considerable. A new report suggests union members working on public projects make almost double what their privately employed counterparts do. Real Deal

On the other end of the housing spectrum: The Hampton’s online real estate database just added dollar volumes, giving a first-ever look into the normally secretive world of East End listings. The top three firms: The Corcoran Group, with $2.43 billion in active listings, Elliman with $2.24 billion and Sotheby’s International with $2.19 billion. Everyone else was an also-ran. TRD

Also: Uber exits East Hampton after being ticketed. And this on top of the rosé shortage. Business Insider

And since we’re stuck on the theme: Steven Spielberg is asking $24.5 million for a waterfront East Hampton parcel, minus the original six-bedroom house, which the director razed.

BARGAIN LUNCH: Zhu Ye, the chairman of a Chinese company that develops online games, has agreed to pay $2.35M for a private lunch with billionaire investor Warren Buffett, winning a charity auction. It’s a steal: The 2012 meal went for $3.45M.Reuters

LIKE THIS? Please pass along a good thing to a friend or colleague. Forward this newsletter and encourage your crowd to sign up here.

MOORE FOR LESS: Three years before co-founding Intel, Gordon Moore suggested that computer power would expand exponentially while its cost would decrease at pretty much the same rate. Fifty years later, Moore’s Law still looks inescapable. Transistors, the building blocks of the digital world, sold then for $150 each. They’re now 70K to the penny. Is there a way for startups to cash in? Tech Crunch

RUGILE SHOULD BOOK HER: New Zealand-born artist Honor Harger does a Ted Talk on the sounds of space, first heard by Bell sidekick Thomas Watson on a makeshift telephone wire. Who knew remnants of the Big Bang were still making noise after all these years? (Our favorite is the planet Jupiter, which sounds a lot like popcorn.) NPR

A REMINDER: There’s really no such thing as “free” news. Please support our sponsors.

Compiled by John Kominicki. Thanks for reading.