Tue.Jan 09, 2018

Report: Super-Secret SpaceX Payload, Zuma, A Total Loss

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A report in the Wall Street Journal this morning says that the highly secret rocket mission launched by Los Angeles-based SpaceX on Sunday was presumed to be a total loss, and failed to reach orbit. According to that report, Zuma the billion dollar spy satellite plummeted back into the atmosphere after failure to separate from the second stage of the SpaceX Falcon. For its part, SpaceX told the WSJ that its launch was "nominal".

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Beyond the Demo: 2018 Could Be Year for Longer, Profitable VR Content

Xconomy

René Pinnell says he and his wife Selena Pinnell were “blown away” by the virtual reality projects their friends were creating in 2014, so they looked for an entrepreneurial niche that would allow them to support such artists.

j2 Global Names Three Execs

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Los Angeles-based j2 Global has named three new execuives, the company said Monday afternoon. According to j2, it has named Harmeet Singh as President of Cloud Services; Steve Horowitz as President of Ziff Davis; and Joey Fortuna as Chief Technology Officer. Singh has been at j2 since 2013, and prior to that was at SingerLewak LLP. Horowitz has been at Ziff Davis since 2010, and previously served at Bankrate, AOL, and Yahoo.

Silicon Beach Report Jan. 9: Tesla Hits the Roof; NASA to Collect Earth Science Data; and Eastman Kodak Gets Into Cryptocurrency

L.A. Business Journal

Electric car company Tesla has begun to install its first solar roof tiles for customers who placed reservations beginning last May. NASA has a new pilot program to gather Earth science data. And Eastman Kodak is introducing its own digital currency as part of the launch of a platform for photographers looking to license their photos

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SD Venture Funding Tops $1.9B in 2017; and Q4 Top 10 Deals

Xconomy

Venture capital activity ended the year with a strong finish in San Diego, as investors poured $498.4 million into 61 companies during the last three months of 2017, according to Venture Monitor data released Tuesday. The strength of fourth-quarter deals, lifted by a $125 million financing in November for the molecular diagnostics company Progenity, brought total venture investments in San Diego to nearly $1.92 billion in 215 deals last year.

ShadeCraft Opens Preorders For Robotic Sun Shade

socalTECH

Los Angeles-based ShadeCraft says it has begun taking preorders for its "robotic shade", which automatically tracks the sun and keeps consumers shaded while sitting outdoors. The startup, founded by CEO Armen Gharabegian, says it uses "Internet of Things (IoT) through artificial intelligence (AI) integration and voice activation features" in its product. READ MORE>>. shadecraft robotic robot shade sunlight robotics artificial intelligece voice

ViaSat Enters Beta On Commercial Satellite Broadband Service

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Carlsbad-based Viasat said on Tuesday that it has started beta service on its ViaSat-2 satellite, and plans full commercial launch in February. According to ViaSat, it has already demonstrated speeds over over 100 Mbps to production consumer terminals on the service, which serves North America, Central America, the Caribbean, a portion of northern South America, as well as the primary aeronautical and maritime routes across the Atlantic Ocean between North America and Europe. READ MORE>>.

QAD Offline Due To Massive Mudflow Disaster In Montecito

socalTECH

Santa Barbara, California-based ERP software developer QAD has lost its website--and has potentially undergone either mudflow or water intrusion--due to the massive disaster unfolding in Montecito, California. QAD's headquarters are immediately in the area in Santa Barbara where at least 8 people are dead, where hundreds are being rescued, and neighborhoods wiped out due to a mudflow off fire-stripped hills above Montecito, due to the massive Thomas Fire.

ObEN Finds $10M More For Avatar Technology

socalTECH

Pasadena-based ObEN , which is developing intelligence avatar technology which allows users to create highly realistic avatars for use in augmented reality and virtual reality environments, has raised $10M more in funding, the company said this morning. The funding came from K11. According to ObEN, the new funding brings its total raised to more than $23.7M. ObEN is led by Nikhil Jain. READ MORE>>. capital venture reality jain ainikhil avatar virtual oben