High-powered jobs in tech meant Jaleh Bisharat couldn’t spend as much time with her daughter as she would have liked. Now that her daughter is grown, Bisharat asks her for her impressions of a childhood with a busy working mother.
By Jaleh Bisharat (VP of Marketing, oDesk)
At 17, I boarded a plane in Tehran, to do something few Iranian girls did. Instead of getting married at that age like my mother, I braved a 6,000-mile journey for a Harvard education, and ultimately a career.
That career has been fulfilling, but I’ve asked myself that familiar guilty question: what effect has this had on my daughter?
I’m starting to find out.
This supportive community, that ranges from behemoths like Google, to active and innovative individuals like James Governor, is a testament to the sheer potential of London’s startup tech marketplace.
By Francesca Krihely (Community Manager, MongoDB)
I moved to London in May and after living there for six months, I was pleasantly surprised at the market opportunity and community for startups in London. There have been a number of wildly successful London-based startups, namely Canonical, supporters of the Ubuntu Linux distribution and Last.fm, which was acquired
This is an infographic about how many tries a person endured before succeeding.
By Anna Vital (Co-Founder, Vash.co; Founder, Funders & Founders)
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos confessed on Charlie Rose recently that it took him 60 meetings to raise $1 million when he started Amazon. 60 sounds like a lot, but how about 300? That is how many investors Pandora’s founder talked to before getting his first yes. If 300 seems like a lot, how about the 1,004 attempts to sell the KFC fried chicken recipe that Colonel Sanders made before he sold it?
During the hackathon, we’re constantly evaluating whether “it’s worth it” on any given problem.
By Anna Billstrom (iOS & Facebook App Developer, Self)
The AT&T Hackfest was in Palo Alto. Sleepy, beautiful, affluent, diverse and yet economically not-diverse, Palo Alto, at the AT&T Foundry, a neat space with lots of power, sunlight, and (oddly, but great) random doors onto the street. I kind of love that place.
By Avichal Garg (Co-Founder & CEO, Spool)
Core competence is a factor that cannot be easily replicated and gives the business a competitive advantage in delivering their product or service to customers. Core competencies are how a business does something; the lens through which opportunities are identified and evaluated. Cultural competencies are how a business figures out what to do. 
Every business, no matter the size, has cultural competencies.
- Cultural competencies are a reflection of the founders’ personalities. It’s no coincidence that Google was started and led by Ph.Ds, Apple by a designer-perfectionist
By Bernadette Jiwa (Brand Consultant, The Story of Telling)
Everyone can agree that there’s nothing really objectionable about calling your business ‘Bargain World’. It’s an innocuous name and most people won’t hate it. That’s the problem. If you’re going to name your startup, product or service something that people won’t hate, then you’re giving yourself an identity that they will never be able to care about, either.
Bunkum! I hear your cry what about Apple and Amazon, aren’t they just unobjectionable words too? Back in 1976 when Apple was Apple Computer, tech startups and corporations were called IBM (what does that stand for?) and Microsoft.
By Heesun Lho (Founding Team Member & Project Manager, YouNoodle)
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is back with the annual AWS Start-up Challenge! The competition, which began in 2007, rewards some of the the best ideas and startup companies with not just cash prizes but also with AWS credits and great opportunities to get noticed. A combined $50,000 in cash and $50,000 in AWS credits goes to the grand prize winner!
This year, the AWS Start-up Challenge promises to be a much larger innovation campaign and has partnered with YouNoodle, a San Francisco-based startup company co-founded by Rebeca Hwang.
By Sally Jones (Co-Founder, Giddy)
How many times have you heard your friends complain about the challenge of finding healthy on-the-go snacks for their kids? We realized moms everywhere were sick and tired of feeling guilty over the snacks they gave their kids and of fighting with them over what they could and couldn’t eat. That’s when the inspiration struck… why should only the junky, artificial snacks be fun?
The Beginning of Giddy: The Team
My fellow Giddy co-founder Jill and I met while attending business school and quickly bonded over a shared passion for all things health and wellness related. When we weren’t in class you could find us training for our next triathlon or planning a festive dinner party with friends. We worked on a few business plans together but ended up pursuing more traditional paths after graduation. The entrepreneurial inkling was strong though, and a few years later we found ourselves brainstorming various ventures that aligned with our personal interests and itching to take the entrepreneurial leap.
As we began to research the kids snack market, we quickly noticed that while there was no shortage of fun snacks for kids, most of these were the same options available when we were young and loaded with artificial ingredients. On the other end of the spectrum, when you walked down the snack aisle at a natural / specialty grocery store, it seemed like all the fun had been sucked out of the kids’ offerings. Why not bring the fun to wholesome by tapping into the fact that kids love to play with their food… voila.
We arrived at Giddy’s snacktivity platform — interactive snacks that are dipped, peeled, spread or created. By offering up fun, interactive snacks made with real wholesome ingredients, we felt we could create a differentiated and compelling offering.
Validating The Idea
Our first big undertaking was to conduct some primary research to validate the market opportunity and to create a value proposition that would resonate with moms. We conducted an online survey with over 500 parents of elementary age kids along with a large number of focus groups.