stories by Heather Kelly
Can a mobile app help the homeless? The U.S. government thinks so, and it has drafted a few good developers to compete on just such a project for a $25,000 grand prize.
Google is donating 22,000 square feet of its New York City office to CornellNYC Tech for classes and other uses, Mayor Bloomberg and Google announced today. The science and engineering school won the bid to become a Stanford of the East back in December, and this partnership with one of the largest and most influential tech companies gives it a running start.
The problem with most magazines is that they’re just too quiet. Flipboard, the gorgeous iPad and iPhone reading app, is teaming up with SoundCloud to add audio content to its mix of news, photos, and social media.
Adobe announced a handful of new features for producing, publishing, and promoting tablet publications created with its Digital Publishing Suite on Tuesday, including the ability to publish to the iPhone, tightly controlled sharing options, and a little something that could make every digital-magazine designer cry tears of joy.
Lenddo, which helps people build credit with small loans and a social-based Klout-like scoring system, raised an $8 million first round of funding Tuesday.
A new type of office space for tech startup-hopefuls is opening its doors in San Francisco today. Falling somewhere between a co-working space and a full startup incubator, WeWork Labs is a “pre-incubator” — or as we’ve taken to calling it at VentureBeat, a pincubator.
The audiophiles at SoundCloud, the large sound-sharing platform, unveiled a completely rebuilt web app at its office in San Francisco Wednesday. The new app is only in private beta to start, though ten thousand invites are being sent out today.
Following in the steps of its “actions,” Facebook on Wednesday introduced a new Timeline tool for third-party applications called action links. These customizable links will appear below an app’s post on your timeline or news feed alongside the links for Like and Comment. You’ll start to see the new links immediately on full web versions of Facebook, but they’re not on mobile.
Sponsored Post There are misconceptions about how important branding it is to success, how much work it takes, and the best ways to approach it. But every company, from a fresh-faced tech-startup to Apple, knows good branding can make a product or service.
Troubled phone-maker Nokia is attempting to unload its luxury mobile-phone brand, Vertu, for a reported $265 million (€200 million), the Financial Times is reporting. Nokia is being advised by Goldman Sachs on the deal and is currently in talks to sell the brand to private equity group Permira.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average has featured the same 30, large publicly traded companies since 2009. The stock market landscape has shifted significantly in the past three years, and now big tech companies like Google and Apple could be considered for a spot on the elite list, according to business publication Barron’s.
Apple’s iCloud service has 125 million users, the company announced today on its second-quarter earnings call. That number is up from the 100 million users Tim Cook said the service had on February 14 during a Goldman Sachs call.
Following a few days of excited build-up, Planetary Resources, a new space startup backed by heavy hitters including Larry Page and James Cameron, officially announced its plans to mine asteroids near Earth. At the Tuesday morning event, which took place at the packed Space Gallery in the Museum of Flight in Seattle, the company said it would launch phase one of its mission within two years and use the next decade just to identify resource-rich asteroids.
To promote the upcoming release of its Creative Cloud subscription service and the latest version of its Creative Suite software collection, CS6, Adobe hosted a flashy launch event at the de Young Museum in San Francisco Monday.
Electric scooters and Segways are both legitimate forms of transportation, but they’re just so dorky looking. A new product called the ZBoard from Intuitive Motion might save the genre, with a combination of cool technology and attractive design. Also, it just looks hella fun to ride.
Fantasy football is a huge and very lucrative multibillion-dollar industry in the United States. Politics are equally competitive and ruthless, and its fans just as passionate, but it lacks the fun as well as obvious way to profit (you know, unless you’re a politician).
PositiveTalk is a web-app that attempts to accentuate the positive social chatter in your life. It eliminates the negative with a somewhat messy and crowded Facebook-esque interface, peppered with graphs and charts obsessively calculating positivity.
Remember virtual reality tours, those 360-degree panoramic photos you could navigate with your mouse? They were hot for a while, popping up on every real estate agent and hotel site, but the low quality and jerky navigation made them feel antiquated and oh-so Web 1.0. TourWrist began reviving the art form last year by taking it mobile and adding a slick user interface.
Who hasn’t wandered around a Safeway googling “kale recipe” or “what is a stinging nettle?” on their smartphone? Edamam is a new food-search site and mobile app that hopes to make navigating all that edible data faster, and choosing healthy food easier.
The DEMO Spring 2012 conference kicked off Tuesday in Santa Clara, Calif. The bi-annual event, co-produced by VentureBeat, gives startups the opportunity to launch their products in front of an audience of innovators, influencers, investors, and journalists.
Found is a neat new Mac application that wants to be like OS X’s Spotlight, but for all the files you have stored across cloud services, including Dropbox, Google Docs, and Gmail. Currently in beta, Found is aiming for a mid-May release in the Mac App Store, where it will be free.
As soon as one startup hits it big, a crop of clones rush to cash in on the excitement. The latest company de jour to mimic is Pinterest, the popular visual-bookmarking site. And, as with Groupon and Airbnb before it, we’ve seen tons of “A Pinterest for ____” PR pitches.
Less than one year after receiving $30 million in funding from Andreessen Horowitz, shoe-of-the-month company ShoeDazzle is dropping its subscription payment model and announcing impressive new user-numbers.
Apple is holding a conference call bright and early Monday morning to announce plans for its large cash balance. The company is sitting on around $98 billion in cash, and investors are getting increasingly antsy and clamoring for a dividend or share buyout.