Innovation Economy
A star still waiting to be born in Kendall Square
Halls - Color
If you last visited Kendall Square 10 years ago and returned to the Cambridge neighborhood today, you’d think Jack had sprinkled around a bushel of magic beans. New buildings have sprouted, bars and restaurants have opened, and an East Coast Google campus has been completed. You can even ice skate in the winter or rent a kayak in the summer. But one thing that hasn’t changed is Glenn KnicKrehm’s empty gravel lot in the heart of the square. The precious acre of property is still surrounded by chain-link fence, and KnicKrehm is still spinning his vision of building a $300 million arts and culture complex called the Constellation Center. Read more in my latest Innovation Economy column in The Boston Globe.    
Taylor Swift meets big data: Gogi Gupta works his magic on the music industry
Gogi Gupta, founder of Gupta Media, in his office on Boylston Street. Boston Globe staff photo by John Tlumacki
Ten years ago, Gogi Gupta started a business at the Cambridge Innovation Center with little more than a computer and an abundance of ideas about how music labels could do a better job marketing their artists online. Today, his company Gupta Media has 43 employees and is a major player in the music industry, running digital marketing for every major star, including all the top nominees at Sunday’s Grammy awards. His work for Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, Sia and other best-selling artists is featured in today’s Boston Globe. BetaBoston sat down with Gupta to talk about getting started as an entrepreneur, pitching to clients and making water disappear from a cup. Read More
Intergalactic Cardigan
Ministry of Supply, The Grommet team up on space-age sweater
Seamless ventilation panels in the Mercury sweater maximize airflow and help keep wearers cool. Photo via Ministry of Supply.
Ministry of Supply, the Boston-based fashion outfit that uses space-age materials in its designs, has been on a roll as of late, having opened storefronts on both coasts within the last eight months. The company continued its recent run of success with the launch of the all-new "Mercury cardigan" this week in collaboration with The Grommet, a Somerville firm that helps small companies and individual entrepreneurs bring their products to market. Read More
Robots on demand
Uber's partnership with CMU brings the future of robot taxis into focus
Mercedes-Benz demoed its autonomous concept car during the 2015 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada January 5, 2015. REUTERS/Steve Marcus
In success or scandal, Uber's drivers play a central role in defining the company's identity. On Wednesday, Governor Charlie Baker announced an intention to develop clearer licensing rules for such services to operate within Massachusetts. But one day, Uber may be able to skirt these altogether by removing the driver from the equation. This week the company announced a partnership with Carnegie Mellon University, a pioneering center for autonomous vehicles research. Word is, Google is planning a competing service of its own. Read More
Smarter prescriptions
With new funding, Orig3n hopes to hone in on best treatments for you
Orig3n CEO Robin Smith with COO Kate Blanchard. (Photo courtesy of Orig3n.)
Boston startup Orig3n has been showing up at marathons and triathlons with an unusual request for participants: How about parting with a vial of blood? The company is trying to build a giant library of iPS cells — that's induced pluripotent stem cells — and they've found that amateur athletes tend to be more willing to share than most. Read More
Not your average nerds
HourlyNerd gets $7.8 million in new funding from powerhouse group of investors
HourlyNerd co-founders (left to right) Peter Maglathlin, Pat Petitti, and Rob Biederman (Photo via HourlyNerd)
HourlyNerd, the Boston-based online consulting service company, is not shy about its aspirations. After announcing today that it has received $7.8 million in new funding, co-founder Rob Biederman was quite bullish on the company's prospects. "What we are trying to do with our technology product is far from trivial," Biederman explained. "For 90 years, McKinsey [well-known consulting firm McKinsey & Company] has done what we are doing with extremely talented, intelligent people with 30 or 4o years of experience. And we are trying to do that with a piece of technology." Read More