2023

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Why Your Startup Needs a Fractional CTO – TechEmpower

TechEmpower

A Fractional CTO bridges the gap between founders and developers to help keep your tech strategy aligned with your business goals. This helps your startup stay agile and competitive in a fast-paced marketplace.

CTO Hire 650
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How to make a small problem into a big one.

Berkonomics

Allowing small problems to escalate into big ones is simple. Just ignore the signs for long enough and the job is done. It takes far more energy to regularly review the key performance indicators you’ve established for each individual and yourself. But a small excursion caught early and corrected saves massive corrective resources later. Here’s an example: Take for example the manufacturing company with a small quality problem in one component, resulting in a test failure rate above the norm.

Examples 296
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Robotaxi pushback grows in Los Angeles as Cruise loses permits

TechCrunch LA

Less than a month after Waymo’s Los Angeles County expansion, labor organizers and an LA lawmaker are calling for new autonomous-vehicle regulations. On Tuesday, the office of LA Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martínez said he will introduce a motion “urging officials in the state to address public safety concerns around autonomous vehicles and reign in the expansion […] © 2023 TechCrunch.

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9 Innovative Startups To Watch For in 2024

Tech.Co

2023 hasn't been an easy year to be a startup. While the market isn't short of spritely, innovative entrepreneurs, harsh economic headwinds combined with a pullback in investor spending have made it harder than ever for budding businesses to break through. In fact, according to Crunchbase more than 212 startups closed their shutters in the third fiscal quarter alone – the highest number recorded in the firm's history.

Startup 213
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Can You Ask for Office Rent Relief? How to Manage Your Lease During COVID-19

Office leases are one of companies’ largest expenses, and if your whole team is working from home with no clear end in sight, you may be wondering what to do about your lease.

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8 Top Capabilities Of Most Successful Business Owners

Startup Professionals Musings

In my experience in large businesses as well as years of advising startups, I see far too much focus on product skills, and too little on people and process skills. In my view, this focus on the wrong skill set is the primary reason why over half of new businesses fail in the first five years, and only one out of a hundred startups get their requested funding from professional investors.

Startup 154
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Startup San Diego Showcase Founders at Qualcomm, SDSU, Carlsbad and Tijuana

Startup San Diego

This article was originally posted on Business of San Diego by Fred Grier on November 6, 2023. During the last week of October, four hundred people converged at Qualcomm’s headquarters in Sorrento Valley on a Friday evening, to conclude its annual “Startup Week” extravaganza organized by non-profit Startup San Diego. The week-long conference, celebrated the city’s […] The post Startup San Diego Showcase Founders at Qualcomm, SDSU, Carlsbad and Tijuana appeared first on Startup San Diego.

San Diego 107

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53 Questions Developers Should Ask Innovators

TechEmpower

At TechEmpower, we frequently talk to startup founders, CEOs, product leaders, and other innovators about their next big tech initiative. It’s part of our job to ask questions about their plans, challenge their assumptions, and suggest paths to success. The conversations are interesting and varied because they’re about new, exciting, different things.

Develop 520
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Framework Benchmarks Round 22

TechEmpower

We’re pleased to announce Round 22 of the TechEmpower Framework Benchmarks! The TechEmpower Framework Benchmarks project celebrates its 10th anniversary, boasting significant engagement with over 7,000 stars on GitHub and more than 7,100 Pull Requests. Renowned as one of the leading projects of its kind, it benchmarks the peak performance of server-side web application frameworks and platforms, primarily using tests contributed by the community.

Framework 409
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How to Use Generative AI and LLMs to Improve Search

TechEmpower

Artificial Intelligence (AI), and particularly Large Language Models (LLMs), have significantly transformed the search engine as we’ve known it. This presents businesses with an opportunity to enhance their search functionalities for both internal and external users. With Generative AI and LLMs, new avenues for improving operational efficiency and user satisfaction are emerging every day.

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A heartbreaking story about time and money.

Berkonomics

First, think about your time as money! We’ll get to my heartbreak in a minute. But first… There is a relationship between time and money that is more complex than most managers think. Fixed overhead for salaries, rent, equipment leases and more make up the majority of the “burn rate” (monthly expenses) for most companies. Since this number is budgeted and pre-authorized, managers tend to focus upon other things such as sales, marketing and product development issues.

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Take only “smart money” investments

Berkonomics

This statement could be considered controversial. We have previously made the case that professional investors demand more in the form of restrictive covenants and lower valuations. Now we explore the other side of that coin. Professional investors usually bring “smart money” to the table, defined as money that comes along with good advice and great relationships for corporate growth.

Invest 296
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Need investment capital?

Berkonomics

Preparing for the game… If you have been following our recent insights, you’ll be up to speed knowing that professional investors negotiate tough terms, from provisions of control over asset acquisition, eventual sale of the company, future investments, forced co-sale when others attempt to sell their shares and more. And yet, in an earlier post, we spoke of the problems that come when taking unstructured investments from friends and family.

Invest 296
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Need money? Read this!

Berkonomics

How important is this issue for your business? The subject of raising money is critical to many businesses and a passing option to others, depending upon the capital efficiency of the enterprise. Some businesses require very little capital and the founder can self-finance the enterprise and retain 100% of its ownership and control from ignition through liquidity event (startup through sale).

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What do you give up when you take outside investors?

Berkonomics

Setting your expectations Taking in angel or venture money requires a setting of an entrepreneur’s expectations that may come as a shock at least at first. From the moment such an investor looks seriously at your company, the investor or VC partner is thinking of the end game, the ultimate sale of the company or even of an eventual initial public offering.

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Are you at risk for tech killing your job?

Berkonomics

Stop me if you’ve heard this story before. “My job as a (newspaper publisher telephone installer, stockbroker, travel agent, retail store manager) writer, poet, commercial artist – is safe as this economy continues to grow.” Yup. Thought so. We are in a decade of creative destruction that will affect most everybody. And the prime motivators of this massive destruction are the same class of entrepreneurs and innovators that have done it before.

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Recurring revenues: Oil or glue?

Berkonomics

Some types of businesses generate more and more recurring revenues over time, often growing to a size where recurring revenues pay all of the overhead of the company – an enviable position. The surprising recurring revenue trap. There is a phenomenon I have observed time after time with mature companies receiving over 75% of their revenues from recurring sources.

Sales 296
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Can you guess 10 tests for your success?

Berkonomics

Your success must be based upon data that is solid and sometimes flexible enough to pass several critical tests if it is to guide a business enterprise to greatness. Here in brief are ten tests for your business success. Try these on for size, and test yourself for attractiveness to the marketplace, to investors and to history. Ten tests for your business success: Is your market identifiable and accessible?

Patents 286
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Hackers claim ransomware attack on Los Angeles housing authority

TechCrunch LA

The Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, or HACLA, has confirmed it is investigating a cybersecurity incident shortly after the LockBit ransomware gang claimed responsibility for a cyberattack on the agency. HACLA, which provides affordable housing to more than 19,000 low-income families across Los Angeles, was added to LockBit’s dark web leak site on December 31.

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Los Angeles demands robotaxi rulemaking powers

TechCrunch LA

Mayor Karen Bass says Los Angeles — not a state agency — should have the power to decide how robotaxi companies expand in the city. The impact of the mayor's calls may extend well beyond LA. © 2023 TechCrunch. All rights reserved. For personal use only.

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Robotaxis ‘do not belong in the city of Los Angeles,’ lawmaker says

TechCrunch LA

Robotaxi oversight is now a priority at Los Angeles City Hall. At a press briefing on Wednesday, Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martínez told Waymo and Cruise that their robotaxis are not welcome. “The purpose of this press event is to send a very clear message about robot taxis, and say that they do not belong in the […] © 2023 TechCrunch. All rights reserved.

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Waymo to test driverless rides with employees in Los Angeles

TechCrunch LA

Waymo will begin testing its autonomous Jaguar I-Paces without a human safety operator in Los Angeles in the next couple of weeks. This is the company’s next step on its path to commercializing robotaxi services in its second California city. To start, only employees will be able to hail rides in the driverless robotaxis. While Waymo has been mapping several LA neighborhoods, including Downtown, Miracle Mile, Koreatown and Westwood, since 2019, the company will start its rider-only testing

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A Research Team Plans to Merge AI with Human Brain Cells

Tech.Co

A group of researchers in Australia have been awarded just over $400,000 (USD) in government funding to study the possibilities of merging AI with human brain cells, a research project likely to bring a number of AI-related ethical and existential questions to the fore. The team, working in collaboration with Monash University and Melbourne-based Startup Cortical Labs – is the same group behind the DishBrain project, which involved teaching a group of human brain cells how to play the retr

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What Is Claude AI and Anthropic? ChatGPT’s Rival Explained

Tech.Co

You’ve probably heard of both Bard and ChatGPT by now. However, another highly capable chatbot burst onto the scene earlier this year called Claude. It comes courtesy of Google and Amazon-backed startup Anthropic, which was only founded in 2021. Claude is definitely one of the most impressive chatbots to be launched in the last 12 months. More than 350,000 people signed up to the waitlist to use Claude 2, the most recent version of the language model.

ChatGPT 142
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7 Specifics Show How Startups Are All About Execution

Startup Professionals Musings

In my experience with entrepreneurs, there seems to a wealth of self-proclaimed “idea people” who aspire to start businesses, but only a few who are willing and able to dig in and get the job done. All the great ideas in the world won’t make a business, if the ideas never get implemented. Only rare great entrepreneurs, like Bill Gates and Elon Musk, have proven to be both.

Startup 155
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6 Startup Lessons Learned By Passionate Entrepreneurs

Startup Professionals Musings

Over my many years of mentoring aspiring entrepreneurs and business professionals, I often hear a desire to start a new business, with a big hesitation while waiting for that perfect idea and perfect alignment of the stars. From my own experience and from the best entrepreneurs I know, I always offer some basic business realities, and assure you that conditions will never be perfect.

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20 Best Free and Paid Tools for Startups in 2023

Tech.Co

Launching and growing a startup is one of the biggest missions an entrepreneur can undertake. But while competition remains fierce, the advancement and accessibility of smart solutions are making it easy than ever for startups to find their feet. Business tools — from customer relationship management ( CRM ) platforms to accounting software — help to save startups time and money by automating key processes and maximizing efficiency.

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10 Ways To Make Your Funding Pitch More Hard-Hitting

Startup Professionals Musings

The average length of a funding pitch to angel investors is ten minutes. Even if you have booked an hour with a VC, you should plan to talk only for the first fifteen minutes. The biggest complaint I hear from fellow investors is that startup founders often talk way too long, and neglect to cover the most relevant points. Or they get sidetracked by a technical glitch due to poor preparation.

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5 Keys To Capitalizing On Nondisruptive Business Growth

Startup Professionals Musings

Most of the entrepreneurs and aggressive business owners I meet in my consulting practice are focused on finding new disruptive solutions and killing competitors as the key to success. If you are one of these, you may be missing win-win opportunities to incrementally expand existing markets, create new ones enabled by new technologies, or do good for society in this new age.

Capital 142
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Claude 2.1: Anthropic's ChatGPT Rival Gets New Killer Feature

Tech.Co

As OpenAI hits the headlines for all the wrong reasons, Anthropic has turned Claude into an "industry-leading" AI tool.

ChatGPT 153
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8 Priorities When Offering A New Product Or Service

Startup Professionals Musings

Every one of you business owners I know periodically introduces new products and services to sustain growth, fight off competitors, or take advantage of new technologies. Often, despite your passion and expectation, customers don’t immediately see the value and need that you see, and you have no idea why the initiative is stuck , and what could be the real customer issue or fix.

Product 141
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10 New Venture Factors To Consider Before You Commit

Startup Professionals Musings

If you are one of the new age of entrepreneurs who hates the thought of doing a business plan as a first step in starting your new venture you will love this message. More and more professionals agree that a better strategy is to explore and fine tune your assumptions before declaring a specific plan with financial projections based only on your dream and passion.

Startup 142
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10 Keys To New Business Learning As An Entrepreneur

Startup Professionals Musings

If you can’t deal with failure, then the entrepreneur lifestyle is not for you. Don’t believe that urban myth that all you need is a good idea, a little fun work, and the money will start rolling in. When you are pushing the limits, nobody gets it right the first time, or even maybe the tenth time. That’s why the term “pivot” was invented, so you don’t have to call every change a failure.

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9 Point Checklist For Success In People Communication

Startup Professionals Musings

Every business professional and entrepreneur believes they are good communicators, but how do they know? It’s really the perception of the recipients that counts, and poor communicators are almost always poor listeners, so they don’t hear the shortcomings. Warren Buffet once told a class of business students that better communication could boost their value by fifty percent.

Class 143
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5 Keys To Personalized Team And Customer Connections

Startup Professionals Musings

The days of leadership without engagement are gone. With interactive social media and video everywhere, everyone needs to feel they have a relationship with their leaders, and every brand needs leader personification for customers to relate. Soon you won’t be able to name a business as one of your favorites if you can’t personally visualize and relate to company leadership.

Customer 140
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8 Keys To Starting A Venture With Minimal Equity Loss

Startup Professionals Musings

If you really want to start a business your way without a boss or professional investor hovering over you, then just fund it yourself or through friends and family, and grow it organically. It’s more possible to bootstrap today than a few years ago, as the cost of entry continues to go down. According to Investopedia , over 90 percent of successful businesses currently start this way.

Equity 139
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5 Pitfalls to Avoid When Transforming Your Business

Startup Professionals Musings

No matter how well your business seems to have worked for you up to this point, you can be certain that it will need to be heavily transformed for tomorrow’s new world-wide economy and no industry sector boundaries. New digital technologies, business models, and regulatory rulings are forcing all of us to think outside of our silos and rethink what it means to operate effectively.