Author: Rich Foreman

Ready For Wildfire App

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) fights more than 5,600 wildfires that plague California annually. CAL FIRE has a new weapon in its arsenal to help prepare the public for when the next wildfire strikes: a new mobile app called CAL FIRE Ready for Wildfire. The app is currently available on both the iPhoneand Android platforms. [Editor’s Note: Contributing writer Rich Foreman is the CEO of Apptology, the developer of the  CAL FIRE Ready for Wildfire app.] The app has three primary functions: Providing educational content on how to prepare for and help protect property from wildfires...

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2017 Sacramento Aging 2.0 Startup Competition

Aging 2.0 held its third-annual Startup Pitch competition on Tuesday at the KVIE offices. The mission of Aging 2.0 is to accelerate innovation that improves the lives of older adults. From a pool of 12 companies that applied, eight startups competed in this event this year. Here are the results: 1st Place First place went to Envoy America, a ride-sharing platform for seniors. It trains seniors to provide rides for other seniors. The service can be described as non-medical care for seniors. Envoy America will go on to compete at Aging 2.0 Optimize event in San Francisco on Nov. 14 for...

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Eric Yuan, Zoom Communications: Finding Success in a Crowded Market

Eric Yuan has been deeply involved with engineering since the 90’s with a knack for innovation and collaboration. He was one of the founding engineers and VP of engineering at WebEx for over a decade. Interestingly enough, Eric and his team of engineers laid the foundation for SaaS web conferencing technology almost by accident. In the early years, WebEx was originally a custom development shop until one of the co-founders felt productivity would improve if they monitored the engineers via video conference. This sparked the idea that other companies would benefit from such a concept as well and thus the pivot to web conferencing occurred....

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Rapid Ramen Chris Johnson: Fear vs Faith

Chris Johnson is an accomplished entrepreneur founding Rapid Products and the Johnson Group Inc. With his roots firmly grounded in Sacramento, Chris grew up with a diverse duo of family members. His mother was a small-business owner consulting for major corporations and his father was a senior special agent for the Federal Government. At the age of 16, Chris started down the entrepreneurial road and started a teen dance club and held the first event at Dante’s where he hosted 400 local high school students. While in college, Chris developed the idea for the Rapid Ramen Cooker when he...

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500 Startups Batch 19 Demo Day

The theme for 500 Startups Batch 19 Demo Day was Valentine’s Day (although it technically was on February 15) and accordingly Founder, Dave McClure, kicked it off dressed as the Queen of Hearts. Batch 19 had 44 companies participated in two tracks, B2B and Fashion and Beauty. I’m always impressed with the diversity of 500’s startups. Almost half of the startups are international and over half the founders are woman and minorities. I wish I had the time to write about each startup but alas, I only have time to mention my personal favorites. So in no particular order…...

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TechCrunch’s 10th Annual Crunchies Awards

TechCrunch’s 10th Annual Crunchies Awards is Silicon Valley’s version of the Academy Awards. With the venue at the spectacular San Francisco War Memorial Opera House, the attire ranged from evening wear to hoodies (it’s Silicon Valley after all). Tech celebrity sightings included Yahoo Marissa Mayer, Atom Factory Troy Carter and 500 Startups Dave McClure. The emcee of the awards ceremony was comedian Chelsea Peretti who described sex as 3D printing using DNA. The event was kicked off by a witty opera performance by Laura Krumm that took jabs at President Trump and Peter Thiel (a high profile Trump supporter)...

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7 App Advertising Models

This article is originally posted on LinkedIn and is reprinted here with permission.  The mobile advertising market is at a pace to hit $100 B in 2016. Consequently, numerous mobile ad companies have sprouted up. The mobile ad companies are wooing developers with various advertising models that can easily be integrated into an app with their SDK. This post lists 7 mobile ad models. 1. Banner Ads This is what most people think mobile ads are. They typically will occupy the real estate at the top or bottom of an app. If the user taps the ad, all sorts of possibilities open up from watching a video to the option of downloading an app.  I personally think this is pretty ineffective method of advertising and cheapens your app.  Users have become blind to banner ads.   The dominant players for banner ads are Google’s AdMob and Chartboost. 2. Interstitial Ads These are inserted at transition points in an app like right before an app starts or in a case of a game after a level is complete. It’s like watching a commercial on television. It’s typically a video that can drop the user off to the advertiser’s desired URL or to download another app. Some of the mobile advertisers that use this model include TapJoy, RevMob, and Flurry. 3. Rewards Ads They are my favorite because it’s a win – win for all involved. The reward is triggered by some event...

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“The Original Business Plan Never Works…But that’s Okay!”

Howard Love is a startup legend founding or co-founding a total of 15 companies since 1985. Some of his most notable enterprises have been LoveToKnow, PageWise, and Flex Jobs. He recently released his new book, “The Startup J Curve” that outlines the life cycle of successful startups. While attending Colgate University, Howard and his venture partner changed the school’s computer network to a trading system. It evolved into a technical analysis and software charting package for users of the original IBM PC. They made an okay name for themselves and later got involved in software development tools. After moving to Silicon Valley, they named the...

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Margaret Mackenzie Empowering Female Entrepreneurs: Seeing is Believing

Margaret Mackenzie was interviewed at Startup Grind Sacramento at the Urban Hive last September and enlighten the audience with well-needed entrepreneurial wisdom. Currently serving an executive role in Astia, Margaret also consults several early-stage startups with a specialty in finance, IT and artificial intelligence. She served as CFO at Paymo (now Boku) and JustInvesting along with being CEO to 3 financial market corporations. Her focus has been identity, digital/mobile transactions, and FinTech. Born in Stockton and raised in Sacramento, Margaret founded her first startup named Paymo with the model that customers would be charged for their digital transactions on their phones rather than their credit/debit cards. Feeling that the idea was ahead of...

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Y Combinator COO Qasar Younis Discusses Entrepreneurship

Qasar Younis was interviewed at Startup Grind Sacramento and shared how he has climbed the ranks of the entrepreneurial ladder. He is the CEO of Y Combinator (YC), an organization that provides seed funding for startups while linking them with potential investors and acquirers. Qasar reached success through Talkbin that was originally backed by YC before being acquired by Google 10 months later. He than became Google’s product lead for business facing product and has assisted dozens of entrepreneurs turn their ideas into a reality via YC. Growing up in the rural environment of Pakistan and migrating to Michigan in the 80’s, Qasar’s initial background was in...

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