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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

The most interesting presentation at last week’s ACCTCanada Directors Forum was, in my opinion, on open innovation by Angus Livingstone, UILO at UBC. Much of the discussion by other presenters focused on patents and other control mechanisms, while Angus showed the shifting paradigms that we are experiencing in university knowledge transfer. He explained that the main shift over the next five years will be from closed to open innovation, in parallel with shifts from outputs to impacts and from transactions to relationships. Angus highlighted the old paradigm:

  • Patents
  • Licenses
  • Spin-offs
  • Proprietary industry research funding
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REUTERS/ADACThe Government of Canada is offering to be the guinea pig for new products and services developed by Canadian entrepreneurs.

Announced at a Toronto press conference on Friday by Rona Ambrose, Canada’s Minister of Public Works and Government Services, the new program is part of Ottawa’s $40-million Canadian Innovation Commercialization Program. It is designed to help small businesses bring new products and services to market by first testing them within the government.

“With this new program, our Government will be giving our talent a kickstart in getting their innovative products and services off the ground,” said Minister Ambrose.

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Job interviewContinuing my thread on getting the VC job.

When preparing to get a venture job, it’s important to understand which role you’re likely to fill and what experience you need to do so.

You need to make an honest assessment of the various types of experience that you do an do not have that are attractive to VCs, filling gaps where you can to fit into one of the 4 VC molds. If you have some investing experience, for example, you may want to check the operating experience box by working at a startup, taking a role at a large corporation or starting a company. If you’re obtaining a graduate level degree, you can partially check this box by interning or advising startups in your spare time.

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It’s not the first time a tree offers a window into humanity. Anyone who has read Shel Silverstein’s classic knows that. But, even so, this little video by Amy Krouse Rosenthal says a little something about what we see and what we actually notice. It was filmed this past summer in Chicago…

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Steve Buscemi portrays a powerful politico and gangster named Nucky Thompson in HBO's new series Boardwalk Empire. To mark the show's premiere, TIME takes a look at other Mob bosses who have reigned on American television and movie screens





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Today's world looks increasingly like the future. Robots work factory assembly lines and fight alongside human warriors on the battlefield, while tiny computers assist in everything from driving cars to flying airplanes. Surgeons use the latest technological tools to accomplish incredible feats, and researchers push the frontiers of medicine with bioengineering. Science fiction stories about cloning and resurrecting extinct animals look increasingly like relevant cautionary tales.

But even the best of science and technology has yet to solve climate change and famine, or conquer disease. More and more people live on a planet with shrinking resources, which leads to political strife and conflict.

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Instead of another boring lecture, last week my students at UC-Berkeley got quite a treat: a lively discussion with TechCrunch founder Mike Arrington. I once described Mike as a cross between Oprah Winfrey and Howard Stern; so I was ready for a little controversy. But he ended up lighting such a big fire, that I’ve been bombarded with questions from students about their education and careers. The questions aren’t just coming from Berkeley; after the discussion was posted on TechCrunch, students at Duke asked me to discuss this at a keynote I am giving at their entrepreneurship symposium on Wednesday; and students at other schools, from as far as India and Singapore, have asked for advice.  So I’ll just respond here in the hope of quenching this fire.

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As we wrap up our GeeksOnaPlane video series for TechCrunch TV, I thought I’d offer a perspective on Asia from the eyes of a Silicon Valley geek and investor (not to mention the father of two Japanese-American kids).

For those aren’t familiar with what GeeksOnaPlane (aka “GoaP”) is all about, we bring geeks and investors from Silicon Valley and elsewhere to geeky locations all around the globe. We talk/ meet/ socialize to understand more about technology, entrepreneurship, and new markets through travel and cultural exchange.  To learn more, visit our website and blog and meet the 100+ folks who have traveled with us to Asia in 2009 and 2010, and Europe in 2009, or see any of the thousands of photos, tweets, and other social media created while we visited 10+ countries in the last 2 years.

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There’s some press chatter around about “express” licenses. Here and here and here.

We were using this sort of approach a decade ago to manage non-exclusive licensing programs for specific projects. The idea is, for a given technology base, use a stable agreement so everyone gets reasonable, non-discriminatory access to what you have. Open source licenses such as the BSD and GPL are obvious examples. Our variations allowed recipients to negotiate from the standard agreement 1) to meet their local conditions 2) to offer something back to the project and 3) to improve the standard relationship for everyone. A take-it-or-leave-it approach doesn’t do this, and is only more efficient in that you don’t care about anticipating early relationships and only will deal with folks willing to take what you are offering.

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As I write articles on how an entrepreneur should brand themself, I’ve been receiving questions on WHY an entrepreneur should focus on personal branding. Here are some of the reasons why every entrepreneur should focus on personal branding:

Why brand yourself?

You are the face of your brand/company
As an entrepreneur, you are the main representative of your business. Being that you are the one with the most at stake to the success of the company, you have the most desire and passion to see it succeed. If you are working on your personal brand, you are in essence working on your business as well.

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Mobile devices –- from the straightforward mobile phone with a camera… to iPhones stuffed with apps — have given smaller businesses the ability to operate nimbly and cost effectively.

Are you using handheld mobile devices to run your business? Now I’m not talking simply about using a smartphone to retrieve and answer short emails, or take voice calls while out of the office. Today those kinds of activities are a given and I will assume you already use mobile phones in that way.

Rather, what I am referring to here are innovative uses of mobile devices to operate your business — to close sales; to source the right repair parts and get them into the hands of your repair staff; to deliver goods and services to customers; to manage inventory and supply levels; take payments outside the office; and much more. If your staff is currently using mobile devices to such ends, give yourself a star. But if not, here are 10 ideas for integrating mobile devices into your internal operations to generate more revenue, improve your bottom line, or deliver better customer service:

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