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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

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I raise here the prospect of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) around the world and across industries becoming collateral damage in the Innovation Wars or, to put it more mildly, Global Innovation Rat Race.

SMEs are helplessly squeezed between technology start-ups and global corporations in this battle. The stakes are high because the digital world follows "the winner takes all" economics.

Image: ST ILLUSTRATION: MANNY FRANCISCO

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It’s not unusual to find yourself talking to an uncoöperative appliance or gadget. Soon, though, it could soon be more common for those devices to actually pay attention.

A startup called Wit.ai plans to make it easy for hardware makers and software developers to add custom voice controls to everything from smartphones and smart watches to Internet-connected thermostats and drones.

Image: http://www.technologyreview.com

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USDA

WASHINGTON, D.C.-- U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) recently awarded more than $18 million in grants to small businesses for high quality, advanced research and development that will lead to technological innovations and solutions for American agriculture. NIFA awarded 100 grants through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program.

"Small businesses are adept at finding solutions that can advance agriculture, create new jobs and grow our economy. These grants will provide resources so small businesses can innovate and create new breakthroughs," said USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.

 

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Most commentary about the Internet of Things assumes that we sacrifice privacy and security for huge efficiency gains. But what if the notion underlying that tradeoff — the idea that more connectivity always means greater efficiency — is flawed? What if indiscriminate information sharing has the same drawbacks with devices as it does with people?

Image: Free Digital Photos

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Regression models, Monte Carlo simulations, and other methods for predicting what’s around the corner have been in use for decades. It’s only recently, though, that advances in information technology have made it possible for predictive tools to access and manipulate big data, and to do so continuously — accelerating the generation of insights, and opening up opportunities to anticipate issues with unprecedented precision. Think of the colleges that are increasingly able to identify students at risk of dropping out and intervene before they do. Or lenders’ enhanced abilities to gauge credit risk. Energy, agriculture, insurance, retail, human resources — no industry is unaffected. But nowhere is the potential of this new era of opportunity more apparent and exciting than it is in health care.

 

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Jerome Katz, director of the Billiken Angels Network

A record number of startup companies being founded in 2013 has led to a dire need for more angel investors in St. Louis, says Jerome Katz, director of Saint Louis University's Billiken Angels Network. Katz said as more startups are lured to St. Louis via accelerators like SixThirty, The Yield Lab and Capital Innovators, more angel capital will be needed to support the growing community.

Image: Jerome Katz, director of the Billiken Angels Network

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In early drug dis­covery, you need a starting point, says North­eastern Uni­ver­sity asso­ciate pro­fessor of chem­istry and chem­ical biology Michael Pollastri.

In a new research paper pub­lished Thursday in the journal PLOS-Neglected Trop­ical Dis­eases, Pol­lastri and his col­leagues present hun­dreds of such starting points for poten­tially treating Human African try­panoso­mi­asis, or sleeping sick­ness, a deadly dis­ease that affects thou­sands of people annually.

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Santa Monica, Calif. (October 20, 2014) – Today 32 cities launched Next Century Cities, a bipartisan, city-to-city initiative dedicated to ensuring the availability of next-generation broadband Internet for all communities. The cities and their elected leaders are joining together to recognize the importance of leveraging gigabit-level Internet to attract new businesses and create jobs, improve health care and education, and connect residents to new opportunities.

Next Century Cities will support communities and their elected leaders across the country as they seek to ensure that all have access to fast, affordable, and reliable Internet. Today’s launch, held at a dynamic coworking space for Santa Monica’s technology companies, convened mayors and other leaders from 31 cities for a cross-cutting discussion about what’s worked in their cities and how to support next-generation networks nationwide.

Image: Free Digital Photos

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Sujan Patel

You could spend all day reading and thinking about how to be a more successful person, or you could actually start making some changes in your life. When I first started my journey as an entrepreneur I did more of the former until I released action is the only real way to actually get ahead. Every successful entrepreneur from the past and present has followed a different path that ultimately led to their success, but they all have one thing in common: they all adopted certain habits along the way that made it possible for them to reach their goals and succeed.

 

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