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Lora Kolodny
1,213 followers -
writer, editor, closet optimist
writer, editor, closet optimist

1,213 followers
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Lora's posts

i just really do not want to use this thing. but i feel obligated to do so once in a while. 

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(My latest - interview with Executive Director of Breakout Labs, Lindy M. Fishburne. Check out these totally ambitious, save the world and live longer or better startups she's funding)

EXCERPT: "Peter Thiel made few friends among academics with his much-publicized views that young people should drop of out of college, build a business and skip the student debt.

So it may come as a surprise that his early-stage fund Breakout Labs invests in startups mostly led by teams of academics, including PhDs and research scientists. It also helps universities make money through tech transfer (or university-owned intellectual property).

Founded in late 2011, Breakout Labs has quietly backed 19 “hard science” startups to date, according to Executive Director Lindy M. Fishburne, co-founder of the firm with Mr. Thiel.

Its portfolio companies are ambitious in their plans to advance human health, and dramatically improve life on earth with concepts seemingly lifted from science fiction...." 

Visit WSJ's VC Dispatch blog for the rest:

http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2014/06/11/where-most-investors-fear-to-tread-breakout-labs-funds-early-stage-advanced-tech/

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I'm still waiting for my Tardis-grade, universal translator tech… Meanwhile, Smartling's pretty interesting. Co. just raised another $25M to help organizations translate anything digital. 

From my WSJ /@DJVentureWire post today. 

EXCERPT: According to forecasts by Common Sense Advisory researchers, the global market for outsourced language services and technology should reach $43 billion by 2016, and it has already surpassed $35 billion annually.

Bad translations and failure to understand multilingual nuances can leave a business hurting. In one widely reported example from the late 1980s, Kentucky Fried Chicken’s “finger lickin’ good” slogan roughly translated to something that meant, “eat your fingers off” as the company moved to mainland China. That was quickly changed and KFC does robust business there today.

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Grey's Anatomy actor makes a debut in Silicon Valley? No, not the HBO show. He's begun making angel investments in health and wellness tech startups. His first investment is in @CrowdMed- a company that uses "crowdsourcing" to give undiagnosed, or incorrectly diagnosed people information, ideas and help from "medical detectives" online. 

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So. This would have saved me hours every year in commuting time when I was back on the E. Coast. Mobile ticketing headed to Metro North Railroad and Long Island Rail Road. (Homesick for NYC! Somehow.)

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GuideSpark's early success is mirroring Marketo's path to a successful IPO, says an investor who worked with both software-as-a-service firms. While Marketo offers marketing automation software, GuideSpark takes dull employee communications (like pamphlets, intranet web pages, and employee handbooks) and converts them into more engaging, mobile and video content. My latest for WSJ blogs / Dow Jones VentureWire here. 

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Mobile first isn't really optional for tech startups anymore (or really anyone in business especially app makers) says Version One Ventures' Boriz Wertz. (guest post at +The Wall Street Journal  The Accelerators blog)

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SoundFocus is building hardware and apps that can adjust music, movies, a phone call or any sound (from your electronic devices) to your exact hearing needs. The idea is to help people hear clearly without putting it on blast, and putting their hearing at risk of noise-induced hearing loss. Interesting idea! Hope they make it happen.   My post with more details on WSJ blogs.

http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2014/02/21/hardware-startup-soundfocus-raises-1-7m-to-protect-hearing-in-post-ipod-xbox-era/

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great big list of alt country songs (and songs in a kindred spirit) that i put on songza. 
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