Yuri Cunza, president and CEO Nashville Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, is one of about 70 corporate supporters who have collectively raised $500,000 to help a team of engineers and researchers in Switzerland design a “toddler robot” meant to walk seamlessly among humans at home and work.
The childlike robot, dubbed Roboy, is a bit of a darling of the international technical journals and trade publications, particularly because of its advanced “tendon-driven” design. While robots conjure images of spidery contraptions that move around with stiff, awkward motions, Roboy moves with a fluid-like motion and is designed to perform human activities such as riding a bicycle. The project is being spearheaded by the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory of the University of Zurich.
Cunza, who is also a filmmaker and the publisher of La Noticia, a local Spanish-language newspaper, said he plans to be involved in similar projects in the future.
“I was very excited to see my logo on the Roboy website and even more excited when I found it printed on the body of the robot itself,” Cunza said. “In these days of the Internet and creative crowdsourcing, it’s amazing that someone in Nashville can participate in a project of this scope in Switzerland. I hope to bring some of the energy and spirit behind this project to the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation.”
For more about Roboy, click here.
Jamplify, the music social marketing venture launched last summer out of JumpStart Foundry, recently raised $600,000 in equity — and plans to keep going to $1 million. Among the investors are notable local names Joe Maxwell and Dave Kloeppel. Maxwell ran and sold Investment Scorecard and now is CEO of Shareholder InSite, and Kloeppel was president of Gaylord Entertainment until last fall. Jamplify made a good impression at JumpStart's investor day last August but is now officially headquartered in New York.
There are a lot of startups trying to reward fans for their word of mouth (and typing) efforts, such as CrowdTwist and Plyfe. Pickens says Jamplify is different because it isn't costly for a brand to run a campaign; they are a Saas solution. And a Jampaign can be turned around quickly. If a label only has two days to promote a new music video, for example, Jamplify can work in that time frame.
HT: Southern Alpha
As part of a 37-state settlement of consumer-protection charges, Google has agreed to pay Tennessee about $130,000. The tech giant had in the course of collecting data for its Street View feature collected data from private, unprotected wireless networks. Its total settlement tab will come to $7 million.
Google terminated the data upon discovery, never used it for a product service and didn’t transmit the data to any third parties. As part of the settlement, Google has also agreed to enhance privacy training for employees and create a video for the public on how to protect Wi-Fi connections.
Lynda Hill, a member in Frost Brown Todd’s Nashville office, has been named chair of the firm’s Litigation Technology Advisory Committee, which takes the lead on developing and building the firm's e-discovery services. Hill, who joined Frost Brown Todd from Miller & Martin last year and focuses on products liability and business litigation, will help identify and recommend e-discovery educational programs for firm staff and attorneys. Earlier this year, she also was named to Frost Brown Todd’s Women’s Initiative Steering Committee.
In the year since John Wark opened the doors to the nonprofit Nashville Software School, the developer academy has found its place in the city's creative community — and turned away some folks Wark says looked like they would leave town as quickly as they got here. Pierce Greenberg has the story in this week's City Paper, where he writes about Wark's plans to add night classes and hook up with local government and education officials.
“I’ve shown we can create employable, entry-level developers. So I think we’re at the point where we can have a serious conversation with both the city, who again is committed to development of the tech workforce, and the state,” Wark said.
Erik Carlson, the co-founder of mobile video application Streamweaver, has stepped out of an active role at the company, which just last month snagged $1.3 million in funding. Walker Duncan has more on Carlson's plans for future endeavors.
Mobile phone software developer Metova has added four developers and one quality assurance engineer to its roster, officials announced today. The developers are Benjamin “Seth” Beech, Jamie Hignite, David Mays and Kalan Lee Stowe. Taylor Jackson is the quality assurance engineer.
Beech received a bachelor’s of electrical engineering from Auburn University. Hignite previously worked with the Information Technology Support Services for the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command. She also worked for four years developing web applications for Yum! Brands. Mays and Stowe graduated from Auburn with a bachelor’s in software engineering.
“All of our new developers are proficient in multiple programming languages, but more importantly, they are all great thinkers and problem solvers,” said David Lane, Metova’s vice president of technology. “Their diverse backgrounds in Web and graphic design and computer related services will complement the diverse needs of Metova’s client base.”
Jackson’s role with Metova will be to test client’s mobile applications and to improve the development of those applications. He earned his bachelor’s of science in business administration degree from Tennessee Technology University.
Jackson National Life Insurance, which runs a regional headquarters in Cool Springs, is giving Lipscomb University leaders a big help in building out their computing and informatics offerings by cutting a check to fund the launch of an information technology laboratory. The facility will help Lipscomb model how IT is used in corporate settings, including via analytics and data mining.
The fundraising campaign to complete the ITM lab is ongoing. The Jackson donation will go toward the purchase of a server for virtualization, said SCI director Fortune Mhlanga. Additional equipment needed for the lab includes Windows OS and software licensing, a server UPS and switch, device switches and cabling, student laptops, LCD displays and virtualization software licensing.
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- COOKE, ETHEN LANYARD TRUSTEE; COOKE, ETHEN LEWIS ESTATE
- JACOBS, JESSICA ALEXANDRA; JACOBS, ERIKA BESS