Benjamin Franklin was a man of action. Over his lifetime, his curiosity and passion fueled a diverse range of interests. He was a writer (often using a pseudonym), publisher, diplomat, inventor and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.
His inventions included the lightning rod, bifocals and the Franklin stove. Franklin was responsible for establishing the first public library, organizing fire fighters in Philadelphia, was one of the early supporters of mutual insurance and crossed the Atlantic eight times. Self-development was a constant endeavor throughout his incredible life.
Benjamin Franklin was clearly a man who knew how to get things done.
Read on to find out the 14 Lessons he learned to get what he wanted out of life.
Start Norfolk is a booming success for its second time around the block. The turnout tripled and the energy level of the people in this room are phenomenal. Entrepreneurs, Innovators, Business Gurus, Developers, Coders, and curious spectators have all flocked to the Ted Constant Center in Norfolk, Virginia. 11 teams have been selected to pitch out of over 72 applicants. Presentations are this evening at 6pm. $50K is on the line and a plethora of free services every startup will need that have a value of around $100K.
This is a remarkable event that is growing in popularity. Moreover, it was the launching pad for Vinylmint.
Tinychat, the web-based video chat service, just surpassed 20 million users. Founded in 2009, the company has been on a roll lately and is showing some impressive momentum. Just about a year and a half ago, after all, Tinychat only had about one million users. The company’s co-founder Dan Blake also tells us that the site currently sees about 400,000 daily users and signs up about 50,000 new users every day. The average user now spends a good 22 minutes on the site per session.
Tinychat allows its users to chat simultaneously with up to 11 of their friends (that is, 12 people can be on camera at the same time. There is no limit to how many people can see the videos and participate in the text chat). It is currently available for free on the desktop and runs in virtually any browser without the need to install an extra plugin beside Flash.
Hitting 20 million registered users wasn’t Tinychat’s only good news today. Blake also tells us that the company is now profitable. The service’s business model is based on a freemium model, where users can upgrade to a pro account for better video quality and an ad-free experience.
Tinychat started out as a bootstrapped startup, but just over a year ago, the company raised $1.5 million from a group of investors that included Naval Ravikant, Ashton Kutcher and Sean Combs.
Be sure to check out the cool info graphic in this article.
Meet Joey Hill of Norfolk, Virginia. He had an amazing story to tell John and Jordan of Techcrunch. Joey has two autistic sons who have had trouble communicating and he noticed that the world of tools for autism often overlooked a few things – aesthetics, usability, and customization, to name three. Instead of relying on ready-made utilities, Joe wanted to make something fun and cool.
He created Aeir Talk. It’s an app that allows parents to create and record their own content for use in a very simple but effective method for communications. The parents record a set of verbs and nouns and add pictures of themselves or of familiar objects. When the kids need to communicate, they select a noun and a verb and press a button. The app creates a simple sentence. “I want to go outside, please” or “I want a carrot, please.”
Check out the article above for more on the Aeir Talk app and Joey Hill’s remarkable story.
Rumors and reports of Google Drive’s imminent launch have been coming hard and fast lately, but this one may just take the cake. The folks at The Next Web managed to get their hands on a draft of Google’s official Drive announcement from one of the search giant’s partners, and have just revealed a few titillating details about the storage-service-that-almost-wasn’t.
Earlier reports noted that the long-awaited cloud storage service would make its official debut sometime this week, but that no longer appears to be the case. Instead, Google Drive will reportedly launch next week, bestowing all interested users with 5GB of free storage to play with right out of the gate.
A big domestic market of 92 million people, English as an official language, a large IT talent pool, and a strategic location in South East Asia: the Philippines surely has the potential to become the next webpowerhouse coming out of Asia. I traveled to the country last month (on a private trip) to realize that the startup scene is still in its infancy – but that’s poised to change very soon.
One pioneering startup from the Philippines is Twitmusic, a Twitter-based social music service aimed at artists and their fans. As an artist, having an account on Twitter is one thing, but Twitmusic allows them to upload and share songs (and other content) through Twitter in a matter of minutes.
Existing Twitter users can log in to leave comment on tracks, “love” them, re-tweet them, or share links with followers using the #nowplaying hashtag with one click. Users can also embed individual songs elsewhere, download them (here‘s a pretty popular, downloadable one), or buy tracks on Twitmusic via iTunes.
By all accounts, Y Combinator’s latest Demo Day held last month for its Winter 2012 class was a biggie. With 66 companies presenting their apps, it was pretty impossible to name a startup that was the clear star of the group. But judging from the industry and investor buzz over the past few weeks since then, Socialcam, a mobile app for shooting, editing, and sharing smartphone videos, has emerged as one of the standout companies from this latest YC batch.
Watch the interview above to hear Michael Seibel talk about how Socialcam looks at growth just two weeks at a time, why his team chose to work in Founders Den rather than renting out its own office, why now is an extremely good time to be a tech startup founder, and more.