Seeking robo-supremacy
Robot makers and tech trade group hope to create new workspace for robotics ventures
Vgo Communications makes a videoconferencing robot that is used by Audi at some of its service locations.
Robotics entrepreneurs may soon have their own special place for bot-building. A group of robotics companies, research-and-development labs, and the tech industry trade group Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council are working to create a shared workspace for fledgling robotics ventures, dubbed Mass Robotics. Plans could be announced as soon as mid-October. The space may be located at Alewife on the far fringe of Cambridge, but that's still up in the air, as is a target opening date. Read More
We're listening
Where are Boston's most creative places? #TellBeta
shutterstock_runner
My desk is a creative dead-zone. There, I've said it. I find my best ideas on the move, when I'm strolling to the T from a meeting, or just going for a walk along the Charles—of course, when my keyboard is safely out of reach. We want hear about the places around town you head to for inspiration: Those hotspots you seek out to shake out of a funk or wrestle down a knotty problem. Read More
Learning machines
MIT online course will teach you to design a robot that moves
Credit: Jose-Luis Olivares/MIT
Walking, jumping, running robots like Big Dog and Atlas are equal parts amazing and terrifying. And look how they've grown: MIT's Cheetah bot, once a tethered machine on a treadmill, can now bound across an open field unchained. A few makers of the sophisticated moving robots that are starting to pop up in public more and more are going to be sharing their wisdom with the masses. Starting today, MIT's online course on moving robots is open for business. Read More
Venture Hits the Heights
Not just football rivalries, now alums can compete through venture funding
Photo via WINSLOW TOWNSON/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Today, the Maroon & Gold Fund, an "affinity fund" being run through Launch Angels was announced. The fund looks to raise up to $2 million from Boston College alumni and use that money to invest in 12 to 15 early stage BC-founded startups. While the new fund will help propel BC—which has already produced some recent startup success stories such as Jebbit, NBD Nano—it also presents a new battleground for ultra-competitive college alumni to fight for bragging rights. Read More
Another Trip?
eBay to spin off PayPal...Will it work? Look to TripAdvisor
Photo of PayPal's Boston office via PayPal
News comes in today from all quarters that eBay will spin off PayPal, which it acquired in 2002, as its own public company, sometime late in 2015. While the news raises some questions, and answers a few others, the move could breathe fresh life into Paypal which is competing with Apple, Stripe, Square, and others in the mobile payments space. Read More
Special space for Crimson startups
First look: Harvard's new Launch Lab, a home for alumni startups
Harvard-affiliated startups began moving into the university's new Launch Lab this month.
Just three years after Harvard University opened its Innovation Lab, a space for students to develop startup ideas, there's a new annex for alumni businesses located right across the street. The Launch Lab is intended to support not only recent grads who may be growing companies they started when they were students, but also alumni several years out who are working on new ventures. Both the Launch Lab and the Innovation Lab are in the former WGBH television complex on Western Avenue in Allston. I stopped by earlier this month to have a look... Read More
Who's Next on Beacon Hill?
Soooo...neither candidate for governor seems to know much about technology
Photo of Martha Coakley and Charlie Baker spoke at a forum in Microsoft’s Cambridge office. DINA RUDICK/GLOBE STAFF
From Cal Borchers piece in The Boston Globe:
Charlie Baker talked about his “favorite” collaboration between Harvard and MIT — but couldn’t name it. Martha Coakley thought describing a high-tech innovation as “disruptive” was a bad thing, even though startups wear the label like a badge of honor. Both major-party candidates for Massachusetts governor were clearly out of their element Monday before an audience of about 150 tech workers during a forum at Microsoft’s Cambridge office.
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Happy Coffee Day!
Home to revolutionaries and innovators, Beantown has a long history with coffee
Photo via The Boston Globe
Coffee has powered all kinds of change-makers in Boston. In 1676 a man named John Sparry got authorization to open the first coffee shop in the New World. In the 1700s, activists nursed plans for revolution in the Green Dragon, a coffee shop in Boston's North End. Today, cafes lining the streets of the Seaport and Kendall Square host innovators plotting a different kind of change. Read More