Big news last week in the world of Internet applications was Mint's acquisition by Intuit for $170 million. It seemed to set off quite the storm.
The 37signals blog called it the result of a "VC-induced cancer" to which Fred Wilson responded with his thoughtful post on how exit decisions are made. And it seems that the decision was made by Mint founder Aaron Patzer (which would be the case according to Fred's analysis.)
Here's the deal. There are three types of successful exits for startup founders. You get a new car, you get a new house, or you get a new life. When someone offers $170 million for your startup you get a new life, whatever type of life you want.
You take the money.