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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.

China ViewBEIJING, Dec. 26 (Xinhua) -- China revised its 2008 gross domestic product (GDP) to 4.52 trillion U.S. dollars at the average exchange rate of 2008, narrowing the gap with Japan, the world's second largest economy with a GDP of 4.9 trillion U.S. dollars for the same year.

The revision resulted from China's second economic census which raised the country's 2008 economic growth rate to 9.6 percent from9 percent.

Given an estimate of more than 8 percent growth rate for China in 2009, accompanied by Japan's shrinking economy amid the global economic downturn, the country, currently the world's third largest economy, was poised to overtake Japan as the second largest.
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UI TrendsHere at UI Trends we love Santa about as much as we love design and came up the following list. Please feel free to add any that you think we may have left off.

* 10. Santa knows when people have been naughty or nice.
* 9. Santa’s work transcends language and geography.
* 8. Santa and his team have strong domain knowledge.
* 7. Santa loves his work and doesn’t do it for the money.
* 6. Santa uses specialized tools to get a project done.
* 5. Santa has a fondness for #ff0000 and #ffffff.
* 4. Santa has no problem pulling an all nighter.
* 3. Santa is extremely good at managing very very large lists.
* 2. Santa listens attentively and understands what people really want instead of what they say they want.
* 1. Santa works well under pressure and seemingly impossible deadlines.
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Small Business TrendsI know we haven’t officially finished all the winter holidays yet, but they’re quickly on their way out. Sorry. That means it’s time to get your site ready for the New Year. Below is a checklist of some of the things you should be looking at as we ring the New Years bell and head into 2010. You don’t want to start 2010 off already looking out of style, do you? Your competitors won’t be.

Remove the holiday images: I know, they’re cute and make you feel festive, but by Monday these should be gone. Keeping up your Christmas/Hanukkah/whatever logos makes it looks like your site is still on vacation and that customers should go elsewhere for timely service. That’s not the message you want to send. It’s time for Santa to go back into hibernation.
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Santa ScooterJust a short message to wish you a happy holiday season from the team here at Blogging Innovation.

As a special gift, we've made all of our white papers and case studies registration-free for your convenience. Just click to download.

If you're not already one of the 1,650+ members of our Continuous Innovation group on LinkedIn, we invite you to join the discussions and news item sharing that occurs there for the growing Blogging Innovation community.

May your season be full of time spent with happy and healthy family and friends.

All the best,

Braden
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LeadersThought Leadership...What is a thought leader, and what does thought leadership mean in today's business world? As much as some people wish it wasn't so, a thought leader is not someone who simply restates someone else's views and positions. Furthermore, beyond uniqueness of thought, a true thought leader's positions also challenge established norms and conventions. Moreover, the true litmus test for a thought leader is when their unique ideas are implemented in the marketplace, they tend to create disruptive innovation, and often change the way we view the world. In today's post I'll examine the subject of thought leadership in an attempt to separate fact from fiction

It is certainly much easier to look back in time at world leaders, Nobel laureates, religious scholars, philosophers, and captains of industry to identify historical thought leaders than it is to identify today's visionaries. This is due to the fact that thought leadership was once a term reserved for a limited few. Regrettably the label of thought leader has evolved to become a self-bestowed title for anyone who has something to say or promote, often without regard for qualitative issues. Some would say that the term thought leader, once synonymous with futurist and innovator, is more closely aligned with snake-oil salesman today. Don't get me wrong, true thought leaders still exist; they are just much harder to spot these days.
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WSJWith what looks to be the world’s second largest market for initial public offerings and a burgeoning limited partner base, China is going to command an increasing amount of attention from some of the world’s largest venture capital firms.

Both New Enterprise Associates and VantagePoint Venture Partners have plans to expand their presence in China, according to investors with knowledge of the firms’ activities. These plans potentially include raising a locally denominated investment fund.

They join Sequoia Capital, which VentureWire previously reported has structured its next fund to focus more attention on the China market.
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Blogging InnovationNerac is a global research and advisory firm for companies developing innovative products and technologies. Two of their employees, Kristy Lutz Ulmer and Margaret Fiore, recently published a report on how companies scout for innovation.

I just got to read it and I find this to be great stuff that I want to share with you. You should also download the full report here - Innovation Scouting For 2009

The findings in the report fit well into a key thing being discussed in the open innovation community right now; the real effects of open innovation are due to behind-the-scenes activity rather than flashy portals and idea-generation campaigns.
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PluggedInWe vividly remember the day, May 26, 2007, when we (RouteGuru) launched our key product, landmark-based driving directions. All major digital media blogs in India went abuzz with the appreciation for the innovation as well as speculations about scaling it.

Last week, Google introduced landmark-based driving directions, a global first for Google Maps. The news about this launch found a place in Google’s worldwide blog as well. And once again, all major digital media blogs, this time globally, are abuzz with the news.
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Business WorldA new E23 million expansion of the AIB Seed Capital Fund designed to help Ireland's entrepreneurs has been launched by the Government.

The E23m expansion will bring the total fund size to E53 million and will target investments in start up and early stage businesses with a particular focus on technology, financial services, clean and green sectors, and also businesses in the medical devices sectors. AIB and Enterprise Ireland are joint partners in the new E23m fund expansion, contributing E15m and E8m respectively.

The Fund is managed on behalf of AIB and Enterprise Ireland by Dublin Business Innovation Centre (DBIC) and Enterprise Equity which collectively have over 40 years experience in helping small businesses to develop and providing equity capital. It is administered from NovaUCD located on campus within University College Dublin.
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This Christmas season we find many families struggling financially and the burden to make things "merry and bright" is palpable in all parts of our nation. Buying gifts this year is a low priority for many who are faced with the current economic challenges. Yes, these are lean financial times, but I believe there is no better time to encourage a child to become entrepreneurial than during the holidays.

As the creator of a company dedicated to supporting entrepreneurism for kids, I'm a proponent of promoting an early education in true capitalism. This rough economic time can be a teaching moment and the lessons learned in the process can be some of the most valuable, intangible gifts we can provide to our children that will benefit them throughout life. With American families spending 52% less on Christmas gifts due to financial issues, this season is a prime opportunity for our kids to step up and earn some money for themselves—becoming less dependent on the home budget and gratified in contributing to the family in ways they never knew they could.
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NYTSome years, the holidays seem to bustle right past, and you’re hurled into the new year — flung onward by the gravity of time — before you know it. There are also years, and this is one, when darkness seems to pile up in drifts as the nights grow longer and the day goes down into its burrow earlier and earlier.

Even at its highest, the sun reclines low along the horizon — resting on its elbow, so to speak — and you can feel the coming of dusk as soon as the day slips past noon. This season, Christmas is the pivot of time, when the sun comes to its solstice and we come, too, to a place where our hearts can rest.
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Greed and FearThere are many problems a small business owner or entrepreneur faces while at the start up phase of a business. Most of the time it is revolves around not having enough resources to meet the needs of the growing company or just to stay above water. Apart from getting funds through bank loans, your personal savings and venture or angel capital, there is an often overlooked resource that could be a windfall for the business if it becomes successful. This source of money and publicity is business contests. They are usually organized by bigger companies, universities or whoever, where small businesses and entrepreneurs are encouraged to submit a business plan to be considered in the contest to win cash of free service.

If you are like most people you will not even bother about it, maybe saying that you have never won anything before so there is no need in trying or write it off as one of those get rich quick scams. However, most of them are authentic, but it would be good idea to do a quick search online to learn more about the contest or the company offering it. There are a few strategies you can use to give your business a fighting chance in the competition and they include:-

• Read The Instructions
• Mail It In
• Be Well Prepared
• The Harder You Work The Luckier You Get
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