November 8, 2012 |
Not too long ago, friending someone involved more than just clicking a button on Facebook. So in a retro twist to social networking, a wave of Web start-ups are encouraging users to get off their couches, away from their smartphones and tablets, and back into the real world. "We have an internal tagline: Use the Internet to get off the Internet," said Kathryn Fink, community manager at Meetup, an online-to-offline start-up with 11 million members. Hybrid social networks are connecting strangers with similar interests online, then directing them to meet in person for dinners, bar-hopping, bowling or biking excursions.
September 16, 2012 |
When history comes to assess the present era of Silicon Valley, several chapters will be dedicated to Y Combinator. A start-up investment and training program masterminded by former entrepreneur Paul Graham, Y Combinator appeared at just the right moment: in 2005, when social media were emerging, the cost of launching an Internet company was falling and investors' appetite for risk was returning. In 2000, Randall Stross, a New York Times columnist and business professor at San Jose State University, published "eBoys," an account of Benchmark Capital, one of the first signature investments firms of the dot-com boom.
May 31, 2012 |
Grubwithus, a Venice-based social dining network that hosts restaurant dinners for strangers, has received a $5-million round of funding led by GRP Partners. Users of Grubwithus -- known as "grubbers" -- connect through the website and sign up to attend dinners at local restaurants, where they meet people with similar interests or backgrounds. Dinners in the L.A. area have been organized for music lovers, people who are new to the area, Westside entrepreneurs and downtown dwellers, among others.
May 17, 2012 |
Tim Sae Koo had an idea for a tech start-up, but the first-time entrepreneur had no idea what to do next. In January, at the advice of a friend he joined the inaugural class of tech accelerator StartEngine, hoping to turn his vision for Hypemarks - a website at which users create collections of their favorite links - into a bona fide business. Within three months Koo launched the website, and is now talking to a local investor about a substantial investment in the company.
December 29, 2010 |
Alexis Ohanian's company, Reddit, was based in New York four years ago when it decided to follow the yellow chip road to Northern California. "New York didn't feel like a place where things were happening," Ohanian said. "There weren't a lot of people having conversations about start-ups, frankly. " But this year, Ohanian headed back east. New York now has a hot Internet scene. There are marquee start-ups such as social networking service FourSquare and fashion website Gilt.