Archive | October, 2011

Will the Sun Still Shine for First Solar?

31 Oct

This was an assignment for class and is unrelated to entrepreneurs.


Image via Wikipedia

As global issues continue to hinder the solar energy industry, first generation technology along with an overly optimistic outlook may be more to blame for First Solar’s problems than macroeconomics.

For years, First Solar was deemed the low-cost alternative to the more expensive polysilicon panel. It banked on continuing to gain traction with businesses and the government even when its more efficient counterparts made headway with customers by dropping the price to mirror First Solar. The company’s rosy outlook turned into reality this week. (more…)

Do Businesses Need to Weigh Shipping Options?

30 Oct

A recent article on listed poor shipping options as one of the main reasons to abandon a shopping cart and delved into how to fix this issue.

The three tips for improving your shipping options are:


Are Facebook Users More Trusting?

24 Oct

Predictably Irrational Experiment

The Goal:

To disprove the findings found by Pew Internet Research about the correlation between Facebook users and trust. The study found users who frequented Facebook multiple times a day tended to be more trusting.

The Reason:

After I reviewed the findings, I wondered if that really holds true in everyday life and more importantly on social network sites. By examining the findings, it would seem people who often use Facebook would be more likely to have their guard down. I didn’t buy it. In order to disprove this theory, I took a look at the frequency of people checking into Facebook and their account protection level. I wanted to see if people trusted the social network site and the overall internet.

The Experiment:

For the experiment I surveyed 32 people in person and online. I wanted to see if people who use Facebook more would have a lower account protection level, because they were among the group considered more trusting. (more…)

Small Businesses Weigh Cloud Computing

18 Oct

Image by Paul Vallejo via Flickr

The New York Times recently ran a story about small businesses moving over to the cloud platform.  The article addressed a number of key points owners must consider before making their way on the cloud. (more…)

Room to Read Founder Speaks at NYU Reynolds Speaker Series

17 Oct

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For my social entrepreneur feature installment, I was fortunate enough to snag a seat for the NYU Reynolds Program, “Social Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century,” speaker series and listened to John Wood, founder of Room to Read.

In 2000, Wood left a successful position at Microsoft to begin Room to Read, a non-profit organization providing books to children in developing countries.

The inspiration for Room to Read came when Wood was on a trip to Nepal and visited a rural village. Wood was taken aback by the lack of resources available to students and teachers who were genuinely excited to learn. During the trip, he made the commitment to bring back 1,000 books on his next visit. (more…)

Business Insider Names Top 100 in Silicon Alley

17 Oct

Business Insider just released their list of the top 100 people in Silicon Alley. As I reviewed the list, I was a bit surprised to see the amount of talent coming out of Silicon Alley in comparison to Silicon Valley. A number of companies, over 25%, were valued at over $100 million dollars and many people were from huge online sensations: Facebook and Twitter to name a few. (more…)

Entrepreneur Jamie Graber Adding Spice to The East Village With Gingersnap’s Organic

14 Oct

Tucked away on Seventh St. between Ave. A and First Ave. Gingersnap’s Organic at 130 E. Seventh St. will be making its debut in the next month as a vegan and gluten-free café.

With her bright red hair, the name Gingersnap is actually the owner’s, Jamie Graber, nickname.

“I’m the Gingersnap. My friends call me Gingersnap because they joke I’m a red head,” Graber said.

Gingersnap’s Organic concept is to provide quick service to hustling New Yorkers by having healthy, pre-made food available to grab and go. (more…)

Paul Graham Said What?

11 Oct

After writing my blog yesterday regarding the high turnout of applicants for the Y Combinator start-up batch session, I stumbled across article in The Atlantic Wire about the founder of Y Combinator, Paul Graham, visit to New York City last month.

I may be a little late in the game with my critique of Grahams’s speech during the first ever Y Combinator New York event, YC NYC, but I thought it was relevant in terms of my last blog post.

YC NYC was a conference/reception event where people had the opportunity to not only mingle with the Y Combinator founders but also start-ups that came through Y Combinator (think Airbnb, Dropbox). During the event attended by many with hundreds waiting outside with hopes of access to the sold-out event, Graham did something odd. He preached to the audience about how Silicon Valley will always be better than New York’s Silicon Alley.  Really? Was this the best platform to start the “we’re number one cheer?” (more…)

Y Combinator Applicants Rally for Spot at Boot Camp

11 Oct

With unemployment still hovering around 9%, I think there is no time like now to experiment with ideas.

I guess I am not the only one. According to TechCrunch, Y Combinator, a funding firm providing small investments to a batch of start-ups, reportedly received an application per minute on Monday’s deadline for its January-March incubation period, which equates to 1,440 in a day! Due to the volume of applicants, Y Combinator is looking to expand the incoming class.

The 3% of applicants accepted receive an average of $17,000 for their investment in exchange for approximately 7% stock in the company. The start-ups relocate to Silicon Valley for three months where they are mentored by top-notch professionals, sit in on a number of panel discussions, take part in seminars, and provided ample opportunities to showcase their start-up to investors. (more…)

The Rookie, Tavi Gevinson

9 Oct

Scrolling through the online world, I stumbled upon Fortune magazine covering women entrepreneurs under the age of 25. I was guessing most of the entrepreneurs would be in their early twenties with ideas of mobile apps, green energy discovery, or the next flash site sale.  My mouth kind of gaped open a bit when I started reading about Tavi Gevinson. (more…)


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