Big Data and Yahoo’s Quest for Mass Personalization

Writing for Barron’s, Alexander Eule looks at the oft hyped, but largely unseen idea of big data in day-to-day life. However, Eule highlights a recent example he received in his inbox following a Yahoo-sponsored fantasy football draft. The personalized email – analyzing his draft picks and accompanied by facts and statistics – was an example of big data and its ability personalize content at scale. Yahoo used Durham, NC-based Automated Insights to power the draft reports. The reports are new this year, but Automated Insights began working with Yahoo last year to provide weekly game previews and recaps personalized for each fantasy owner. “We’ll produce basically more on a Tuesday morning than ESPN, CBS and FOX— the largest traditional media companies—will in a year, on sheer volume of stories,” says Scott Frederick, Chief Operating Officer of Automated Insights.

Read the full article from Barron’s.

NCTA 21 Awards Finalists Announced

The North Carolina Technology Association (NCTA) announced today its list of NCTA 21 Awards finalists. The NCTA 21 Awards recognize companies and individuals who have characterized excellence, innovation and leadership in 21 categories. Finalists were selected by a review committee comprised of economic development, education, media, non-profit and technology leaders across the state.

See the full list of NCTA 21 Awards finalists.

FabuLess Semi-Conductors from Sarda: An interview with Sarda Technologies CEO and Co-Founder, Bob Conner

Sarda Technologies CEO and C0-founder, Bob Conner recently spoke with CED about Sarda and why North Carolina provides the Durham, NC-based company a good location. Sarda Technologies is a fabless semiconductor company focused on reducing power loss and managing voltage in high demand environments within small, mobile devices. “RTP is great for startups like ours,” says Conner. “There’s a dynamic power electronics cluster here, in part because of NC State University’s rich history in pioneering power semiconductors. Most of the big companies in the space have design centers here, which results in NC as a center of world-class power/electrical technology talent.”

Read on the CED Blog

Hospital Engagement Index Gauges Patient Involvement

Heather Hogstrom of For The Record takes a look Axial Exchange’s Patient Engagement Index (PEI) and the underlying criteria on which they are measured. The goal of the PEIs is to show which hospitals are working with patients to improve their care, according to Joanne Rohde, CEO of Axial Exchange. The PEIs are compiled using publicly available data and measure three criteria – personal health management, patient satisfaction and social media engagement – that have been found to lower costs or improve patient outcomes.

Read the full article from For The Record.

The Startup Cashing in on FedEx’s On-Time Guarantee

Writing for Bloomberg Businessweek, Patrick Clark talks with CEO Jose Li about Fort-Lauderdale-based 71lbs. Li, whose career in shipping includes tenures at Jamba Juice and FedEx, identified a strategy employed by Fortune 500 companies, that he thought he bring to SMB clients– tracking late shipments and collecting refunds. 71lbs automatically audits customers’ shipping accounts and files late shipment claims for refund under FedEx and UPS money back guarantees. The seven-employee company currently has approximately 1,000 customers and is on track to break even later this year.

Read the full article from Bloomberg Businessweek.

Where, Oh Where Can Your Startup Get Cash?

The Orlando Business Journal talks with Richard Fox, Venture Partner at IDEA Fund Partners, to discuss why local Orlando companies have such a hard time getting seed funding. Fox used data from online deal platform Gust.com to illustrate his point. In 2012 there were 1,250 entrepreneurial companies in Orlando, Melbourne and Daytona beach on the platform. Of those 1,250, only 30 received an investment (28 by angel investors and 2 by venture capitalists).

Read the full from the Orlando Business Journal.