April 13, 2011
Do Chaps or Maps Drive History?
Do chaps or maps drive history? Human brilliance and folly, or geography? Or maybe its genes or culture? At the next SALT talk in San Francisco, archaeologist/historian Ian Morris goes a level deeper than Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs, and Steel to determine why the standards of Europe and North America now prevail in the world when it was the East that dominated for the 1,200 years between 550 and 1750 CE. Why did that happen, and what will happen next? More information HERE.
May and June talks below:
May 3 - Tim Flannery, "Here on Earth"
June 7 - Carl Zimmer, "Viral Time"
April 11, 2011
Call Advertising Market Acquisition: Marchex Buys Jingle Networks (the FREE411 Guys)
Marchex, Inc. (NASDAQ: MCHX) announced the acquisition of Jingle Networks, adding a growing source of mobile distribution to its call advertising network.
The deal is that Marchex plans to pay up to $62.5 million in cash and stock for Jingle Networks, which is a leading providers of mobile voice search performance advertising and technology solutions. Some may know them through their service: 1-800-FREE411.
Jingle Networks’ core business is providing performance advertising solutions to mobile carriers and mobile network operators so that advertising agencies and businesses can leverage in-call advertising, including pay-for-call, to gain new customers over the phone or through the use of mobile applications. Over the last twelve months, Jingle Networks has added numerous mobile distribution partners and grown its mobile partner call volume by more than 200%.
Combining energies, the Marchex Call Advertising Network will now have an annualized reach of more than 500 million phone calls across digital media, including mobile. This new call advertising network empowers both large and small businesses to reach customers when they are ready to buy. As the digital advertising market shifts to incorporate phone calls in a more significant way, the Marchex Call Advertising Network is best positioned to provide solutions to advertising agencies and businesses due to its open platform approach using all digital media platforms and supporting all partner types.
Driven by the rapid adoption of mobile and smart phones, mobile carriers and network operators are seeing a significant rise in the number of consumers leveraging voice search to find businesses. Voice search, however, can be costly for mobile carriers and network operators given the technology and other items necessary to operate the service.
Call advertising helps businesses acquire and up-sell new customers through phone calls, by reaching customers when they are ready to buy. Marchex provides unique phone numbers and analytics tools that are used by advertisers to place, measure and optimize campaigns across all digital media channels, which helps these businesses increase their sales. Call advertising and analytics technologies are more important than ever to track and measure the success of call advertising campaigns in order to help advertisers better optimize their call advertising strategies to increase impact, maximize spend and deliver better sales results for their business.
April 07, 2011
Submit Your Prediction for the Future of Health & Medicine to Win Scholarship to FutureMed, Singularity University’s Future of Medicine Program
FutureMed today launched a contest to attend its newly launched executive program dedicated to where exponential technologies, medicine, healthcare and biomedicine collide and are headed.
FutureMed is held at Singularity University on the NASA-Ames Research Park in Mountain View, CA May 10-15, 2011.
Imagine experiencing an interactive and highly personalized Renaissance-like week, full of some of the best intellectual and innovative brains in medicine and technology under one roof, in an intimate setting.
Through a series of faculty speakers, panels, hands on experiences, site visits, in-depth workshops, and late night discussions, participants will complete this intensive 5-day program with new relationships and insights into unmet needs and opportunities that will transform the world of healthcare, from wellness and prevention to diagnosis and therapy.
Designed for entrepreneurs, innovators, executives, and physicians (CME credit offered), the FutureMed program is bringing together some of the smartest and most talented leaders and visionaries in technology, science and healthcare to examine the intersection of convergent exponential technologies and their game-changing potential to transform all aspects of health and medicine over the next 20 years.
FutureMed covers diverse areas such as genomics, the digitization of health data, regenerative medicine, neuromedicine, brain computer interfaces, gene therapy, robotic interventions, artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, bioinformatics, synthetic biology and more.
The faculty includes some of the world’s most distinguished leaders in their respective fields, including Stanford, Berkeley & Harvard trained oncologists, stem cell researchers, preventative medicine pioneers, surgeons, entrepreneurs and scientists. Speakers include Peter Diamandis, Ray Kurzweil, Dean Ornish, Esther Dyson, Daniel Kraft, Thomas Goetz, David Ewing Duncan, Tim O’Reilly and a host of others.
Singularity University (SU) was co-founded by Ray Kurzweil, futurist, inventor and author of "The Singularity Is Near," and Dr. Peter Diamandis, chairman and founder of the X-PRIZE. SU's mission is to assemble, educate and inspire a cadre of leaders to facilitate the development of exponentially advancing technologies with the goal of addressing humanity's grand challenges. A Graduate Studies Program is held each summer and week long Executive Programs are also held quarterly. You can also check out and follow FutureMed on Twitter and Facebook.
The Moon Rush is On & Silicon Valley Enterpreneurs Are On Their Way
The Moon-Rush is on and Naveen Jainn, Barney Pell, and Dr. Robert (Bob) Richards have started a new company called Moon Express, announced this week. Moon Express is a privately funded lunar transportation and data services company created to establish new avenues for commercial space activities beyond Earth orbit.
Their plan is to develop a space vehicle that will in turn allow the company to tap into mineral resources on the lunar surface. Selected last fall by NASA, Moon Express was awarded a lunar data services contract worth up to $10M, for the initial delivery order of the “Innovative Lunar Demonstration Data (ILDD)” program.
In addition, the X PRIZE Foundation announced Moon Express as a competitor for the $30M Google Lunar X PRIZE, a competition to place a robot on the Moon’s surface that travels 500 meters and transmits high definition video, images and data back to Earth. And to top it off, Moon Express will be sending a series of robotic spacecraft to the Moon for ongoing exploration and commercial development.
The team believes in the boundless economic opportunities on the Moon and are passionate advocates for space exploration.
Here's some coverage from their launch:
VentureBeat: The Semantic Web Shoots the Moon
Techcrunch: From Search Engines to Lunar Landers.....
Inspired by new White House policies supporting increased government partnership with the commercial
April 05, 2011
With 1,323 Brands Using Foursquare, Pages Gallery Comes to the Rescue
Foursquare just launched a new section on their site to showcase major brands on its network to make it easier for users to find and follow them. With 1,323 brands using Foursquare today adn the number growing, it's a natural fit for the most renown location-based service on the market today.
The struggle brands are having apparently is that they're not easily discoverable on Foursquare so they're trying to help brands by with a new section called: Pages Gallery, which is a gallery loaded up with company Pages on Foursquare so you can more easily discover them and and follow them if you're interested in what they're doing and have to say. More more in-depth on this announcement and for some examples, check out the Mashable story.
April 03, 2011
Maggie Mudd: An Ice Cream Institution Now Gone
People have been talking about Maggie Mudd's ice cream shop on Cortland Street ever since I moved to San Francisco. Truth be told, whenever there was a conversation about ice cream, someone would say, yeah, I drive from Marin or San Jose or Pac Heights or Berkeley for Maggie Mudd ice cream, which is a bit of a trek considering how Bay Area residents feel about crossing either bridge and coming into the city.
MaggieMudd is an independent ice cream parlor that specializes in non-dairy flavors - made from soy and from coconut milk.
The funny thing is that Maggie isn't the owner's name, who btw, is a husband and wife team: Michael and Changying. Maggie is in fact, a cat who moved in with them.
They have over 55 flavors of ice cream and vegan dairy-free ice cream, as well as sundaes and ice cream cakes, including ones without dairy.
They created fun names for their special shakes, such as Brooklynn's Twisted Mind, Tarmack, or Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice. I was told on the day I went in that Tarmack was a customer favorite.
So, on the day I ventured into Maggie Mudd -- April 3, 2011, I was craving a chocolate non-dairy frozen cone, and threw it into a Google search and there she was in all her glory: Maggie Mudd came up, a place which has become a San Francisco institution yet the only time I had spent time behind its doors was when I first moved to the city. What was I thinking?
It wasn't busy despite the fact that it was a sunny day (a rarity in San Francisco), yet when I asked about chocolate and other flavors, Willeda, who has been working for them for six years, smiled and said, not today. So, I asked, you have dark chocolate at other times right? Yes, she said with a smile, but not after today. Confused, she went on to say that today was the last day Maggie Mudd was open. Forever. For good. Yowsa - did I get lucky or what?
I had the place to myself until a few moms came in to order their infamous ice cream cakes for their daughters, which will apparently still be available to order even though the shop itself will now be closed. I tested the coconut, cookie dough, coffee, oatmeal dough and against my initial judgment, peanut butter and jelly, which was better than I expected.
With no chocolate in site, I went for the cookie dough...a small set me back $4.25 and a pint is $7.50, a quart over $13.00. In other words, it ain't cheap. Their ice cream wasn't fabulous to be honest, then again, they don't make their own ice cream and what their known for is their non-dairy frozen cones which they make on-site. And those my friends, are creamier, richer and yummier than any other soy dairy dessert I've had.
While you can't get an ice cream cone at their Cortland Street shop anymore, you can click on their online catalog to see what kind of a cake we can make for you, order online and schedule your delivery time.
April 02, 2011
The Tohoku Kids Project Comes Out of Tragedy in Japan
After Japan’s horrific 9.0-magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami, people are donating money and time, charities are thinking of creative ways to help, and countless local and international agencies are on the ground doing extraordinary work for victims in the affected regions.
Smile Kids Japan and Living Dreams have joined forces to provide specific, effective solutions through a joint venture called, Smiles & Dreams: The Tohoku Kids Project.
They will work to support children’s homes (orphanages) affected by the disaster, focusing immediately on the needs of the children who rely on them. Their first act will be to restore basic necessities, including both personal and shared items. They will replenish basic needs such as clothing, baby supplies and basic medicines and also provide homes with items that will help them rebuild a nurturing environment for the children. Through their combined networks, their organizations will directly purchase and distribute necessary items quickly and efficiently.
Their second act will be to connect children’s homes directly to professional child counselling services and also to provide them with a wide range of activities to help their children emotionally move on after the tragedy they’ve endured. Proper counselling along with activities such as trips to theme parks, camping, going to concerts, Yoga, and various other types of therapeutic activities will improve children’s outlook on their lives and future. Counselling services and activities will be funded and arranged directly through our organisations’ networks. Find out more and how to get involved.
April 01, 2011
AsiaBusinessConference Looks at Asia's Fast-Growing Economies Outside Powerhouses Japan & South Korea
On April 2, 2011, Berkeley hosts the BerkeleyMBA AsiaBusiness Conference at the Haas School of Business in Berkeley, CA. This year's event seeks to explore the rising consumption trend in Asia from various dimensions: macro-economic trends, new industry and business structures, the needs of the Asian consumer, and the talent gap in Asia.
They will also be held an event called the Berkeley Asia Business Center Conference in Shanghai China on March 22, 2011.
Featuring the Rising Asia Forum, an in-depth discussion on Asia's fast-growing economies, outside of traditional powers Japan and South Korea, and new headliners, China and India. One panel alone includes Toby Smith, Managing Director, Lombard Investments, Arjun Divecha, Chairman of the Board, GMO and Neil McGovern, Director, Sybase. They'll cover in-depth industry break-out panels such as:
- Cleantech, Consumer Brands, Finance, Health Care, Technology and Rising Asia
- Featuring representatives from Citigroup, Yum! Restaurants, MG-Team, Sunbridge, btrax, BizTechDay, Renewable Analytics, and others.