The API for absurdity
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 7:00 pm

 Every important technology goes through a hype cycle. You’ve probably seen the Gartner Hype Cycle diagram: inflated expectations, followed by despair and eventually a pragmatic understanding of the technology’s value. World-changing promises tend to turn into mundane reality — if they don’t fall off the roller coaster entirely. Read More

Reverie Classic is a crowdfunded watch with some beautiful bones
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 6:51 pm

 There are two kinds of crowdfunded watches – fashion accessories and real efforts at classical design and workmanship. Thankfully the Reverie Classic holds the latter place. The Classic is made by Samuel Tay who previously crowdfunded and built the Sea Spirit a handsome, nautical-themed automatic that did quite well. The Classic costs $350 and runs a Miyota 8218 movement – bog… Read More

Why founders should care where their VCs get their money
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 3:00 pm

 Fundraising for a startup is a notoriously stressful process. Much ink has been spilled dissecting every aspect of what works when pitching a venture capitalist, and there are countless “tips” out there that promise to help close deals. But for all the attention paid to VCs, little has been paid to limited partners — the money behind the money that makes the venture world… Read More

Gillmor Gang: Unborn Child
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 1:05 pm

 The Gillmor Gang — Robert Scoble, Keith Teare, Frank Radice, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor. Recorded live Friday, August 26, 2016. Oh no, Volumetrics meets the Beatles in a trip forward down memory lane. Eventually we discover the chewy center. Plus, G3 with Mary Hodder, Elisa Camahort Page, Francine Hardaway, and Tina Chase Gillmor. @stevegillmor, @scobleizer, @kteare, @kevinmarks… Read More

What this month’s sale means for the future of retail
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 12:30 pm

 Retailers grasp the web-focused future of the industry, but the sale of to Walmart earlier this month has sped up the shift and validated the online marketplace approach to e-commerce. Read More

Weekly Roundup: Zero-day hacks rock Apple, WhatsApp changes privacy policy
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 11:30 am

 August, the weekend of months. This week a zero-day hack rocked Apple, WhatsApp announced a major privacy change and Tesla announced a new model that takes Ludicrous Mode to the next level. Would you rather get the Weekly Roundup in your inbox? Same, TBH.  1. Hackers are honing in on mobile devices. The latest example was an Apple zero-day hack targeting activist Ahmed Mansoor that… Read More

Understanding debt
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 11:00 am

 Without leverage, the private equity sector as we know it wouldn’t exist. While some tech execs and VCs recoil at the thought of using leverage, the truth is that the Innovation Economy has accessed debt for more than 35 years. Given that, debt is worth spending the time to understand. Read More

Tech and Trump
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 9:00 am

 I won’t insult your intelligence by pretending to be unbiased. I think exactly what you’d expect a Canadian who lives in San Francisco to think: how could anyone with a reasonable command of the available evidence even consider voting for Donald Trump? …But my search for an answer has led me to the uncomfortable sense that the tech industry is partly responsible for… Read More

Opera says its service for syncing web browser data was hacked
Posted: 27 August 2016 | 2:30 am

 Opera, which recently agreed to sell its browser business in a Chinese consortium, has reset user passwords for one of its services after it servers were breached by hackers. Read More

Crunch Report | Justin Kan Talks YC
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 11:38 pm

Justin Kan swings by the TC studio to talk YC, Snapchat and a new app he is working on, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is working on a proposal to retain foreigners who build startups, a new type of shape-shifting material is created out of MIT, three tech stories about cars, and Rackspace is going private. All this on Crunch report. Read More

Spotify might not suppress search, but that doesn’t mean artists with exclusives get treated equally
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 10:47 pm

 Accusations that Spotify has been punishing artists for signing exclusives with other streaming services hit the internet in full force this morning, originating from a Bloomberg article.  When confronted by TechCrunch, a Spotify spokesperson gave the same response they have been giving since the story broke — that the accusations about burying search results are “unequivocally… Read More

The monetization promise and pitfalls of Pokémon Go
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 10:00 pm

 Pokémon Go has been downloaded more than 100 million times since its July debut, making it the biggest-growing mobile game ever. Naturally, the phenomenon has drawn much commentary about what this means for marketing, but I am more interested in what it teaches us about making money. Read More

HopSkipDrive wants to be the Uber for kids
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 9:17 pm

 TechCrunch recently went down south to Los Angeles for our mini-meetup and to catch up with the region’s burgeoning tech scene. One of the startups that caught our attention is HopSkipDrive, which aims to be an Uber for picking up your kids. Uber passengers need to be at least 18-years of age to ride alone, so HopSkipDrive hopes to solve a transportation problem for busy… Read More

Microsoft announces new resources to reduce hate speech
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 8:27 pm

 Microsoft today pushed out in a blog post for users of its consumer services new resources to reduce hate speech. Users will now be able to communicate directly with the company to report hate speech, and petition for reinstating content via new online forms. Most people are familiar with efforts by social networks like Twitter and Facebook to ensure safety within their respective online… Read More

Growing up in the intelligence era
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 8:00 pm

 IT is shifting from the SaaS workflow applications that characterized the cloud computing era to those that help customers make decisions: the intelligence era. The source of competitive advantage is shifting from code to unique data + self-learning code. This brings a change in the expectations of investors. Here we review the requirements of enterprise software investors in the intelligence era. Read More

ShakeAlert provides earthquake early warning system
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 7:34 pm

 The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and a series of university partners are developing an earthquake early warning system called ShakeAlert, which aims to provide the general public with alerts up to 10 seconds before an earthquake hits. The system is not yet public, but it is now undergoing testing in California, Oregon and Washington. “There is a similar test effort for an earthquake… Read More

Student projects leapfrog governments and industry in ‘Data Science for Social Good’ program
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 6:57 pm

 Big data is hardly new at this point — nor has it wrought anywhere near its potential effects on many companies and institutions insulated by inertia and red tape. A summer program at the University of Washington called Data Science for Good shows that fresh eyes and good code can make more in 10 weeks than some have done in as many years. Read More

Tracking Instagram’s money-flipping scammers
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 6:42 pm

 Trying to get more followers on Instagram? If you follow a few verified banks and financial institutions, you’ll suddenly end up with dozens of new followers. There’s just one drawback: Your new followers are trying to scam you. Instagram has become a hotbed for so-called “money flipping,” according to a study by the social media security firm ZeroFox. Read More

Russia’s Google equivalent is building a self-driving shuttle
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 5:24 pm

 The Google equivalent in every major market where Google doesn’t really play is making a self-driving car of some kind, and Russia is the latest to join the fray. Yandex is the company in question, which operates Russia’s leading search engine, along with a host of other going concerns. Add to that list a driverless minibus, which the tech company is creating in partnership with… Read More

Plowz and Mowz raise $1.5 million from LA-based Science for on-demand landscaping services
Posted: 26 August 2016 | 5:00 pm

 Launching with a marketplace for landscaping, snow plowing and other home care and repair services, Plowz & Mowz has raised $1.5 million from the Los Angeles-based startup studio Science and undisclosed angel investors. On the heels of the firm’s successful exit from Dollar Shave Club, Science has turned to the marketplace industry for its next investment. The idea for the… Read More

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