Tag Archives: San Francisco

Lets Talk About Sex: Silicon Valley's Efforts To Disrupt The Adult Toy Industry

By Rakesh Sharma, Contributor

The long desks at Minnalife’s offices in San Francisco’s erstwhile industrial hub – Dogpatch – are crammed with hardware paraphernalia: mechanical contraptions, sensor devices, and 21-inch desktops. On a side table, away from the massive machines is the company’s main product: a small pink-colored lemon-shaped personal vibrator called Limon. “I wanted it (the personal vibrator) to be a product that reminded users of something else (other than a vibrator),” says Grace Lee, Limon’s designer. The 25-year-old design graduate chose the shape after much research and numerous consultations with friends and colleagues. Minnalife’s founder Brian Krieger simplified Limon’s operations. He fitted it with memory to enable recording and playback of previous sensations. He also used his mechatronics background to do away with vibrator buttons (used to vary pleasure intensity) and make it squeezeable. “No one’s going to hit buttons and go “Up, Up, Up” or “Down, Down, Down” while using a vibrator,” explains the soft-spoken Stanford engineering graduate. Thus, the harder Limon is squeezed, the greater it vibrates. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

The X Games Are Leaving Los Angeles, But Not Before Bucky Lasek Has A Chance At History

By Chris Smith, Forbes Staff

‘s Summer X Games, the world’s premier action sports series, moved to Los Angeles in 2003 for its ninth iteration. The series had jumped around the country since its 1995 inception, spending a few years each in Rhode Island, San Diego, San Francisco and Philadelphia. But in LA, the X Games found a permanent home, one the series would return to each summer for the next decade. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

US not into electric cars, but feds gave company $100M for charging stations, watchdog says

The public’s aversion to electric cars did not stop the Department of Energy from giving a San Francisco-based company more than $100 million – with few strings attached – for a problem-plagued effort to establish a network of charging stations in key metropolitan areas, according to a government audit.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox News – Politics

‘Catfish: The TV Show’: Max Unloads On A Guy Who Doesn’t Care That He Lies Online To Girls (VIDEO)

By The Huffington Post News Editors

It was easily one of the most emotional encounters on “Catfish: The TV Show.” Oddly, though, it was creators Max Joseph and Nev Schulman who got the most worked up after helping high-school-student Jen learn the truth about her online boyfriend, Skylar.

Jen had only ever seen two photos of him and he refused to video-chat with her, despite being a computer science major. They weren’t even friends on Facebook. But after some digging, Nev and Max tracked his phone number to a guy in San Francisco. Unfortunately, that guy wasn’t Skylar. It was Bryan, who’d made Skylar up.

Jen was heartbroken, understandably, but Max and Nev quickly got worked up as well. Probably because Bryan was so nonchalant about having lied to this girl and then watching her heart break in front of him because of it.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Huffington Post

Home Prices Heat Up in May as Pace of Gains Cools

By Reuters

case schiller home price index housing market real estate sales interest rates

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Nick Ut/AP

By Leah Schnurr

U.S. single-family home prices rose in May, though the pace of gains cooled compared to the month before, a closely watched survey showed Tuesday.

The S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas gained 1 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis, shy of economists’ forecast for a 1.5 percent increase. That marked a slower pace from April’s 1.7 percent rise.

On a non-adjusted basis, prices rose 2.4 percent.

Compared to last May, prices also fell short of expectations, rising 12.2 percent from a year earlier. Still, it was the biggest annual gain since March 2006, matching a record set in April.

The report was unlikely to alter economists’ views that the housing sector continues to recover, making it a bright spot for the economy.

All 20 cities rose on a yearly basis, led by a 24.5 percent surge in San Francisco.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at DailyFinance

Why Do Most Of The Successful Startups Come Out Of The USA?

By Quora, Contributor

I meet with startups from around the world. There are several reasons that more big tech startups come from here than from any other place. Access to role models. One CEO, as we drove by Apple’s headquarters, told me how he watched Apple growing up from a startup, like I did (I lived a mile or two away and got a tour when it was smaller than Y Combinator back in 1977). He said “if Apple can do it, anyone can.” More on why role models are so important later. Access to funding. Apple needed funding to get started. So does every startup. Only a few can go it on their own with just friends and family money. But here even friends and family money is easier to get because of the role models. We all know that if we give you $10,000 (what GoPro started up with, by the way, less than two hundred yards from my house) that it could become a billion-dollar company someday. How many people around the world know that’s possible? Not many, in my experiences. Access to business infrastructure. Need a lawyer that understands how to help startups? They are here. Need an office with good startup help? Go see something like Plug-n-Play that houses 300 startups. Need a PR firm? They are here. Need a mentor who has built a company before? They are here. Need a launch vehicle, like a conference? They are here. Need a CFO who understands how to get a company ready for an IPO? They are here. Etc., etc. Yeah, they might also exist elsewhere, but not in high concentrations like in San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, New York, Los Angeles. Access to distribution. How will you get your new service into the hands of people? How about app stores? Amazon, Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook have them. Who else? No one with serious ones. How about search engines? How about partnership possibilities (want OpenTable to distribute your stuff, for instance?)? Those distribution and partnership opportunities are probably in San Francisco or New York. Rarely other places. Not to mention that most of the world’s tech press is located in San Francisco or New York. Access to monetization capabilities. You want ads? New York has them. Who else will deliver you the USA market, which is still the richest in the world (at least for a few years until China totally takes over). There are other markets that can monetize, but they are not as profitable and harder to kick off a worldwide brand with. Access to Talent. The modern company will probably need a big data expert. Someone who knows how to push around a big Hadoop cluster, for instance. Do you have one in your local community? Probably not, but they exist like flies in the San Francisco area. Google, and many Silicon Valley tech companies (HP, Cisco, Sun, Yahoo) started at Stanford University, which continues to pour out a lot of top-rate engineering and business talent. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest

Video: New Pope Declines To Condemn Gay Priests

By News Editor

Pope keeps women in their place, but soft-peddles on gays in the Church

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Western Journalism

Don't Want Trackers Watching Your Web And Smartphone Activity? This Start-up's For You.

By Kashmir Hill, Forbes Staff

One hot afternoon in June four software engineers, a lawyer and a miniature pinscher named Lunch were gathered around designer Dan Kwon’s computer at Disconnect, a startup in San Francisco. They were watching their new education video, “Unwanted Tracking Is Not Cool.” Its star is an octopus puppet that gets sliced and diced while browsing the Web as countless companies secretly take information from him, make inaccurate assumptions and create profiles. …read more

Source: FULL ARTICLE at Forbes Latest