raniel-diazSince 1967 customers have flocked to Trader Joe’s to stock up on such unusually named items as Quinoa Cowboy Veggie Burgers and Chocolate Dilemma Cheesecake. And while the grocery chain has attracted thousands of loyal patrons over the years, perhaps no other customer has been as dedicated as Mike Hallatt. For years this Vancouver native would drive 3 hours south of his Canadian hometown to Seattle where he would pack his car with as many Trader Joe’s products as he Continue reading

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April 7, 2017

instagram-businessBy the end of the year, the photo sharing app Instagram expects to earn $3 billion from ad sales. That’s a huge jump from the $60 million the social network made in 2015. In that time, Instagram has collected more than 600 million users, a number bested only by its parent company Facebook. About 8 million of these accounts belong to companies who use the platform primarily for promotion.

Soon, though, some brands will be able to develop closer relationships Continue reading

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April 3, 2017

The looping animated icons known as GIFs have provided websites with a unique visual element since the dawn of the Internet. Of course, today’s GIFs do far more than just attract eyes to otherwise dull sites. People use them constantly in social media and text message conversations to express emotions that are difficult to convey with words. And as this video shows, companies like Giphy think that these moving images will soon turn into major money makers for content creators 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 16, 2017

KurtisGarbuttWhen Whole Foods launched in 1978, organic grocery stores were a unique concept for most of the country. As Americans became more health conscious, though, the Austin-based chain eventually expanded into an empire of 469 stores across three countries. In fact, the future for Whole Foods looked so bright that last year the company announced it would add 1,200 stores in the U.S.

But as 2017 arrived, the company’s long term outlook became far less optimistic. Now Whole Foods says Continue reading

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February 10, 2017

PivisoOver the years video games have grown from a niche entertainment platform into a dominant commercial and cultural force. And while plenty of casual players drive this thriving industry, a new class of professional gamers has also emerged on the Internet and in “eSports” leagues. During these competitions, dedicated players face off against each other in front of thousands of cheering fans, just like at regular sporting events.

Like video games themselves, eSports were once thought to hold limited appeal Continue reading

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February 3, 2017

Yahoo launched in the early days of the Internet and quickly became one of the most popular sites in the world. At its height, the news and search site was valued at more than $100 billion. Last month, though, Verizon bought Yahoo for $4 billion, completing the final stage of the company’s long decline. This video tells the story of Yahoo’s fall from the pinnacles of Silicon Valley success.

Questions:

 

  1. What lessons can other tech companies learn from Yahoo’s Continue reading
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January 10, 2017

DJpediaIf you’ve listened to hip hop or dance music made from the 1980s onward, then you’ve heard the Technics SL-1200 turntable in action. For decades these decks were the preferred hardware for DJs of all skill levels. Although a single turntable could cost between $500 to $700, aspiring selectors saved up their money until they had enough for two. After that, they had equipment for life: the durable SL-1200 could be used for spinning and scratching with little need for Continue reading

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November 18, 2016

NewmansOwnOlder Americans should have no problem remembering Paul Newman, the iconic star of classics movies like Cool Hand Luke and The Sting. And while younger people might not know his Hollywood credits, they’re likely to recognize the actor’s trademark grin from browsing the supermarket. Since 1982 Newman’s Own has placed Paul’s face on everything from salad dressing to snacks, but not in the name of making a buck. The brand donates all of its profits to charity, amounting to Continue reading

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November 3, 2016

DanPhifferSince its founding in 1973, the outdoor apparel brand Patagonia has strived to make quality goods in an ethical manner. This combination of strong values and superior products has allowed the company to grow into an $800 million brand. But over the years Patagonia has run into a number of roadblocks in their quest to “build the best product” and “cause no unnecessary harm.” For example, in 2010 an animal rights group revealed that the company had been buying goose Continue reading

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