April 17, 2018

Earlier this month, the music streaming service Spotify went public on the New York Stock Exchange with a valuation worth approximately $30 billion. And while that is certainly an enormous amount of money, it pales in comparison to the $93 billion that the Japanese telecom giant Softbank privately raised last year to create a technology investment fund. In the past, major IPOs such as Spotify’s tended to be the most dependable way for up-and-coming companies to receive a major infusion Continue reading

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July 26, 2017

wedding-flowersAs the sudden closing of Alfred Angelo Bridal shows, dealing with weddings can be unpredictable and continuously frustrating even on the business side. But the financial rewards are vast for those who manage to navigate this volatile sector successfully. The wedding industry earned $58 billion in revenue in 2016 and is expected to bring in $63 billion by 2021. The average wedding now costs $26,500 as couples spend generously over the year or so that they spend planning the big Continue reading

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cowsWhen people think of the organic food movement, their thoughts will often wander to images of upscale urban grocery stores and the fancy clientele that patronize them. But the early days of organic food production certainly wasn’t led by city slickers. In fact, more than 20 years ago a group of Amish farmers developed one of the nation’s first major organic agricultural operations. Centered around the small town of Kalona, Iowa, this collection of primarily dairy farmers has thrived on Continue reading

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June 19, 2017

robert-scobleA few months ago we looked at how increased competition has hurt sales at Whole Foods and slowed its growth in recent years. Faced with the possibility of shutting down stores, CEO John Mackey cleared five people from the board of directors, appointed a new chairwoman, and hired a new CFO. Executives even developed plans to cut costs while also improving operations.

Then suddenly everything changed: last week Amazon announced that it would buy Whole Foods for $13.4 billion. This Continue reading

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lyft-carSelf-driving vehicle technology has improved so much in recent years that the concept is no longer a futuristic fantasy. As automated driving becomes more refined, companies have begun to move out of the research phase and on to developing commercial strategies. Waymo, for instance, became a company in December 2016 after eight years of autonomous vehicle research by its parent Google. During that time, Waymo says that its vehicles logged more than 3 million miles driving in the real world. Continue reading

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February 21, 2017

KellyAs winter winds down, people across the country will start throwing their fleece jackets into the wash for one last spin before months of closet storage. While many people won’t think twice about one load of laundry, unfortunately the environmental effects of this routine task will linger for a long time. Unlike cotton or wool, synthetic fleece releases tiny plastic fibers into wastewater that flows into lakes and rivers. These non-biodegradable materials then bind with other chemicals and cause health Continue reading

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February 2, 2017

FaceMePLSFor many cyclists, the worst thing about owning a bike is getting it repaired. In the best case scenario, a person must buy a bulky, expensive rack for their car, load the bike, and then drive it to a local shop. If you don’t own a car, though, that means you’ll either need to grab a ride with a bike rack-owning friend or walk your wheels to the nearest repairman.

Or if you’re lucky enough to live near a Velofix Continue reading

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January 20, 2017

Ensuring clean water for everyone on the planet is one of the major environmental challenges facing future generations. In this video, a Chilean engineer demonstrates his invention that draws vapor from the air and turns it into drinkable water. If he succeeds in making the machine smaller and cheaper, it could provide an immense benefit to communities that lack access to clean water.

Questions:

  1. Why does Hector Pino need to continue refining his product?
  2. Once fully developed, should Pino form Continue reading
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July 14, 2016

Since Pokémon Go’s launch last week, the mobile app has rapidly grown into a phenomenon with millions of wannabe Pokémasters around the world. In this “augmented reality” game, players literally roam streets, parks and landmarks on a search for the famed “pocket monsters” of the Japanese franchise. When one of these creatures appears on a user’s smartphone screen, they can then capture it to add to their collection. The ultimate goal for players is to abide by Pokémon’s longstanding slogan, Continue reading

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August 3, 2015

For those who don’t have a feline friend of their own, any advertisement for cat food they encounter will probably fall under the radar. That is unless the words “Meow Mix” happen to enter their ears. According to a 2011 survey conducted by the company, more people knew the melody to Meow Mix’s iconic 1970s jingle than the national anthem. This fact is even more incredible considering that the company hadn’t run an ad with the tune since 1996. Throughout Continue reading

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