Investors See A New Web Revolution With Real-Time Web

John Borthwick

John Borthwick – early predictor of the disruptive power of real-time

John Borthwick speaks softly, but he can’t hide his excitement. Co-founder and chief executive of the New York Internet media incubator betaworks, Borthwick is an investor in the microblogging phenomenon Twitter, where people exchange short public messages called tweets. Betaworks is also building or investing in at least 21 other companies mining the “real-time Web.” That’s the term coined to describe the exploding number of live social activities online, from tweets to status updates on Facebook to the sharing of news, Web links, and videos on myriad other sites. “It’s a whole new layer of innovation that’s opening up on the Web,” he says.

 

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Principles of Wikinomics May Help Solve Traffic Congestion

Traffic_Congestion

Traffic congestion is a worldwide headache that gets worse with each passing day. The Intelligent Transportation Society of America and its partners are seeking solutions to this problem, so they turned to VenCorps to apply the principles of Wikinomics.

 

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New Study Shows Patent Systems Hinder Innovation

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Bill Tomlinson. associate informatics professor, used a computer game to test how U.S. patent law affects innovation

A new study challenges the traditional view that patents foster innovation, suggesting instead that they may hinder technological progress, economic activity and societal wealth. These results could have important policy implications, because many countries count on patent systems to spur new technology and promote economic growth.

 

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Solar Technology For Dark Climates

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A prototype of a Stirling engine that’s powered by a solar water heater.

Cool Energy, a startup based in Boulder, CO, is developing a system that produces heat and electricity from the sun. It could help make solar energy competitive with conventional sources of energy in relatively dark and cold climates, such as the northern half of the United States and countries such as Canada and Germany.

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Night with a Futurist Ponders the Prospects for Innovation

Night with a Futurist Ponders the Prospects for Innovation

Dr. Todd Siler speaking at  the Night with a Futurist about Future of Innovation

June’s Night with a Futurist saw Todd Siler discussing the future of innovation. Siler believes that the key constraints to innovation lie in the limitations individuals place around their thinking and creativity added to the subsequent inability to communicate ideas effectively to other people. Siler noted that people “live in a highly compartmentalized world” where different knowledge is siloed. Yet in order to innovate, people must “stand back and reintegrate.” This process can be frightening given the chaos that exists within the human mind but is necessary because inspiration results from the “chaotic moment of piecing elements together.” Siler urged people to “take time to reflect” which allows this integration of ideas to happen.

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Desperately clinging to the past, Newspapers struggle to preserve their legacy

Desperately clinging to the past, Newspapers struggle to preserve their legacy

Newspapers struggle to preserve their legacy

Raymond Alvarez:  The White House says there will be no bailout for newspapers.

The media has languished in the grips of depression for 15 years, shedding jobs, and losing ad dollars and subscribers. Indeed, print publishers lately are showing themselves to be yet another example of an old line business that won’t survive.

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Altering Our Dependencies… one snip at a time

Altering Our Dependencies… one snip at a time 

My granddaughter, Dez, and I rarely see eye to eye. But we have a relationship where we are heavily dependant upon each other

I’m a bit like film director Robert Zemeckis who co-wrote the screenplay Back to the Future. I notice those little things that have disappeared, fond memories of my chilldhood, like service stations that actually had people who provided service.

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Windbelt: Small-Scale Wind Power To Help Power Third World

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZ0v-CK63-4[/youtube] 

 Working in Haiti, Shawn Frayne, a 28-year-old inventor based in Mountain View, Calif., saw the need for small-scale wind power to juice LED lamps and radios in the homes of the poor. Conventional wind turbines don’t scale down well-there’s too much friction in the gearbox and other components. “With rotary power, there’s nothing out there that generates under 50 watts,” Frayne says. So he took a new tack, studying the way vibrations caused by the wind led to the collapse in 1940 of Washington’s Tacoma Narrows Bridge (aka Galloping Gertie).

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