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Thanks to my partners! February 8, 2012

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OurParents went from zero to helping over 5.5MM families a year in two years, all to the great work of my partners Chris and Amit – Many thanks!

A happy sale of a great asset – now we are off to the races with our first customers of SaferAging!

Being grateful for all those who do the hard work on our behalf January 6, 2011

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Had a wonderful opportunity to talk to soldier rotating home from Afghanistan. Made me so grateful for the men and women who are doing God’s work in trying to make the world a better place, even when that means placing themselves at huge risk on a daily basis.

Also reminded me of the huge sacrifices families make to give their moms and dads the support to take on these missions and miss having them be a daily part of their lives.

Enjoy, and be thankful.

8 month old gets a cochlear implant! May 28, 2010

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What a great thing to view at the end of a busy week! Seeing the look of wonder on his face says it all!

OurParents Launches First Easy-To-Understand Scoring System For Comparing In-Home Senior Care Providers April 21, 2010

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OurParents Launches First Easy-To-Understand Scoring System For Comparing In-Home Senior Care Providers

Company takes complex information from Medicare and creates a five star rating system for families using the free service at www.ourparents.com to use to help compare in-home senior care options.

Reston, VA (PRWEB) April 21, 2010 — In-home senior care, in many situations, can prove to be a great answer for families with an aging loved one. The challenge is finding the right provider among the many options in a given area. OurParents’ new scoring system for in-home senior care providers helps solve that problem, dramatically improving the decision making process for families.

Medicare has done a great job in tracking quality information about in-home caregivers in the Medicare network. The data, however, is quite detailed, and difficult for a consumer to use to compare providers.
For that reason, today, OurParents is launching a five star rating system for in-home care providers, modeled after the five star rating system Medicare does for nursing homes.

Using Medicare’s detailed data, OurParents scores each provider, given them a rating from one to five stars. Those ratings can be used at www.ourparents.com/home_care , to help consumers search for in-home care in a given area.

“The Medicare nursing home rating system, while imperfect, has proven really useful to consumers using our senior care search engine,” said John McKinley, founder and CEO of OurParents.com. “We saw an opportunity to expand use the same approach to in-home care provider comparisons. When you combine this rating with our user reviews, pricing information, and the other information we supply, it can help a family narrow down the options that make the most sense for a given senior.”

In less than a year, OurParents.com has already become the second largest senior care matching service in the United States, helping thousands of families each day find senior care solutions that meet their unique needs. With a database of over 100,000 care providers, OurParents provides a free service to families looking for care options for their aging loved one.

“We don’t charge the families or the care providers for our service. That means that OurParents.com will never have the problem of conflict of interest when it comes to making this critical life decision,” said McKinley. “At OurParents, our founding principle is that we are and always will be on the side of the consumer.”

For more information, visit www.ourparents.com.

Contact:
Amit Shafrir
(301) 346 5540
amit(at)ourparents(dot)com

# # #

Another step forward to try to make the senior care decision-making process better. 10+ months into our journey, and we are already helping over 1.4MM families each year. Really happy with our progress, but there is so much more to do.

 

How mobile is transforming accessibility for the vision-impaired! LookTel Video – Real Time Object, OCR, Landmark, & Tag Recognition March 23, 2010

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This is a must-see video – one of the most overlooked topics today is how the convergence of smartphones, higher-end cameras and always-on mobile IP connectivity is opening up the world to the vision-impaired. LookTel’s offering is the perfect intersection, done with such a straightforward, intuitive interface.

Absolutely mind-blowing stuff for a 1.0 product. A job well done by the whole team!

Great news from our team at Tapmetrics! “MILLENNIAL MEDIA ACQUIRES TAPMETRICS” February 23, 2010

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Adds Deep Cross-Platform Mobile Analytics Capabilities to Existing Developer Program


SAN FRANCISCO, CA, and BALTIMORE, MD, February 23, 2010%u2014Millennial Media, the largest independent mobile advertising network, announced today that it will acquire TapMetrics, a San Francisco-based mobile analytics firm, focused on application usage and behavior.

TapMetrics software suite provides detailed analytics to enable developers to better manage their application sales and revenue in a sleek, intuitive dashboard.  By adding TapMetrics, Millennial Media will offer developers more capabilities across mobile platforms:

  • Real-Time, Highly Detailed Analytics
  • User Interaction Information
  • Feature and Version Adoption
  • Device Types
  • Crash Reporting
  • Buzz Tracker & Reviews
  • Competitive Ratings System

%u201CThe market has recognized Millennial Media as the leader in mobile advertising.  As a result of their deep commitment to advertisers, they deliver the best business partnership and monetization for mobile companies %u2013 particularly developers,%u201D said Chris Brown, Co-Founder and CEO, TapMetrics. %u201CWhat is exciting to us is that Millennial Media now has the only scalable solution for developers that doesn%u2019t contain an operating system bias, making Millennial Media the natural partner for us.%u201D

%u201CWhen we raised our growth round of financing in November, we stated that we would make investments to accelerate our growth,%u201D said Michael Avon, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Millennial Media. %u201CWe are acquiring TapMetrics, because the company shares our approach to serve the needs of developers, regardless of mobile platform.  In addition, TapMetrics%u2019 data and analytics capabilities complement our company%u2019s own focus and development plans.  We continue to actively evaluate other potential acquisitions to further expand our business.%u201D

Millennial Media operates the leading mobile advertising platform worldwide.  Since adding $16M to its strong cash position in November, Millennial Media has expanded its offerings to key customer segments, to include OEM and platform partnerships that seek to access its strong base of developers and publishers.  Additionally, Millennial Media%u2019s employee base has grown by more than 20%, as it continues to expand operations in the U.S. and Europe.

On February 16, 2010, the company released other key 2009 year over year mobile advertising growth figures, including:

  • Brand business grew 756%; Performance business grew 171%
  • Average deal size increased 353%
  • Non-U.S. impressions increased 175% year over year
  • 357% increase in Apple OS impressions
  • 90% increase in RIM OS impressions
  • 81% reach of the Mobile Web users

For more information on growth statistics, please visit www.millennialmedia.com/research and download the full 2009 Year in Review.

Millennial Media is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland; and has offices in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Atlanta, and London. TapMetrics will continue to be based out of its San Francisco headquarters.  Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

About Millennial Media, Inc.

Millennial Media is the proven leader in mobile advertising. With the largest mobile media audience in the U.S., Millennial Media uniquely offers brand advertisers the only set of specific, scalable audiences. Our ability to reach, target and engage consumers is unparalleled. As an innovative technology leader, our mobile decisioning, ad serving, and mediation platforms are powering some of the largest companies in the media business today.  The company is committed to growing the mobile advertising marketplace by becoming the preferred partner to all advertisers seeking to reach mobile consumers, all publishers seeking to maximize ad revenue, and all mobile operators seeking to further monetize their networks. For more information, please visit http://www.millennialmedia.com or follow us on Twitter @millennialmedia.

About TapMetrics

TapMetrics, Inc., an early innovator in mobile application analytics, is the creator of the TapMetrics%u2122 software suite, designed specifically for the mobile developer to easily track analytics, reviews, revenue, and more in one simplified dashboard.  With locations in San Francisco and Washington D.C., TapMetrics, Inc. focuses on creating tools for application architects to better understand their users, continually improve their applications, and help their businesses grow. TapMetrics is funded by LaunchBox Digital.

Download PDF

Media and Analyst Inquiries:
Erin (Mack) McKelvey
SVP of Marketing
443 878 5673 (m)
mack@millennialmedia.com

Congrats to the TapMetrics team on your acquisition! Think you have found a great new home with the talented gang at Millennial Media, and expect more wonderful things from our brother-powered mobile innovators!

Oh yeah, I do want this bad boy: The iPhone, iPod Touch controlled AR.Drone quadricopter January 28, 2010

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I saw this at CES, and now it looks like we are only a few weeks from general availability. The use of the accelerometer and video feeds with the iPhone is pure genius! It is a great solution for a three dimensional flying experience.

Now THIS is real innovation!

Man catches “Jersey Shore” fame disease: ACORN ‘gotcha’ man arrested in attempt to tamper with Mary Landrieu’s office phones January 27, 2010

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ACORN ‘gotcha’ man arrested in attempt to tamper with Mary Landrieu’s office phones

By David Hammer, The Times-Picayune

January 26, 2010, 6:23PM

okeefe-landrieu.JPGPatrick Semansky / The Associated PressJames O’Keefe, left, and Stan Dai walk out of the St. Bernard Parish jail in Chalmette on Tuesday. O’Keefe, a conservative activist who last year posed as a pimp to target the community-organizing group ACORN, is one of four people arrested by the FBI and accused of trying to interfere with phones at Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office in New Orleans.

Alleging a plot to tamper with phones in Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office in the Hale Boggs Federal Building in downtown New Orleans, the FBI arrested four people Monday, including James O’Keefe, 25, a conservative filmmaker whose undercover videos at ACORN field offices severely damaged the advocacy group’s credibility.

Also arrested were Joseph Basel, Stan Dai and Robert Flanagan, all 24. Flanagan is the son of William Flanagan, who is the acting U.S. attorney for the Western District of Louisiana. All four men were charged with entering federal property under false pretenses with the intent of committing a felony.

basel-landrieu.JPGThe Associated PressJoseph Basel, 24, is one of four men arrested at Sen. Mary Landrieu’s offices in New Orleans.

An official close to the investigation said one of the four was arrested with a listening device in a car blocks from the senator’s offices. He spoke on condition of anonymity because that information was not included in official arresting documents.

According to the FBI affidavit, Flanagan and Basel entered the federal building at 500 Poydras Street on Monday about 11 a.m., dressed as telephone company employees, wearing jeans, fluorescent green vests, tool belts and hard hats. When they arrived at Landrieu’s 10th-floor office, O’Keefe was already in the office and had told a staffer he was waiting for someone to arrive.

When Flanagan and Basel entered the office, they told the staffer they were there to fix phone problems. At that time, the staffer, referred to only as Witness 1 in the affidavit, observed O’Keefe positioning his cell phone in his hand to videotape the operation. O’Keefe later admitted to agents that he recorded the event.

After being asked, the staffer gave Basel access to the main phone at the reception desk. The staffer told investigators that Basel manipulated the handset. He also tried to call the main office phone using his cell phone, and said the main line wasn’t working. Flanagan did the same.

They then told the staffer they needed to perform repair work on the main phone system and asked where the telephone closet was located. The staffer showed the men to the main General Services Administration office on the 10th floor, and Flanagan and Basel went in. There, a GSA employee asked for the men’s credentials. They said they left them in their vehicle.

The U.S. Marshal’s Service apprehended all four men shortly thereafter.

Landrieu said: “This is a very unusual situation and somewhat unsettling for me and my staff. The individuals responsible have been charged with entering federal property under false pretenses for the purposes of committing a felony. I am as interested as everyone else about their motives and purpose, which I hope will become clear as the investigation moves forward.”

Landrieu’s Republican counterpart, Sen. David Vitter, called for a racketeering investigation against New Orleans-founded ACORN last year in the wake of O’Keefe’s videos.

“I’ve seen the news reports and it’s obvious this is a very serious matter. We’re blessed with an extremely competent U.S. attorney’s office in New Orleans, and I know they’ll handle this as aggressively as they have other serious cases,” Vitter said in a statement.

ACORN spokesman Kevin Whelan said the arrest calls O’Keefe’s credibility into question, and used the opportunity to point out that he “edited (ACORN videos) to make things look as bad as possible.” He said, for instance, that O’Keefe actually wore a normal dress shirt when he was in the ACORN offices, but spliced in shots of him dressed as a pimp in the final videos.

But he also acknowledged that O’Keefe’s undercover ACORN footage showed truly improper conduct by ACORN staff.

“ACORN’s leadership and grassroots leaders have taken a whole series of steps, including commissioning an independent report that shows actually there wasn’t illegal conduct by any of the ACORN employees involved, although we fired people involved for improper conduct,” Whelan said.

O’Keefe on Thursday gave a speech to the Pelican Institute for Public Policy, a libertarian group in New Orleans.

20Acornside01YouTubeFilmmaker James O’Keefe dressed as a pimp before entering ACORN offices last year. O’Keefe was arrested Monday after allegedly attempting to tamper with U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office phones in New Orleans.

Last fall, O’Keefe was hailed as a conservative hero for dressing as a pimp and taping ACORN employees offering advice on how he and a partner could get away with running an international underage prostitution scheme.

The New Orleans event was promoted with this glowing statement about O’Keefe by the Pelican Institute: “James has been a pioneer in the use of new media to drive these kinds of important stories. He will discuss the role of new media and show examples of effective investigative reporting.” 

The four men appeared in federal magistrate court Tuesday afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Louis Moore wearing red inmate jumpsuits from St. Bernard Parish Prison. Moore is allowing the men to be released on $10,000 bond each.

The men have to go to pretrial services, a federal agency, tomorrow morning. Moore allowed three of the men to stay together Tuesday night, but ordered them to not talk about the case.

Eddie Castaing is the lawyer representing O’Keefe, Basel and Dai, all of whom are from out of town. He said Tuesday that he was not prepared to comment on the case and would know more Wednesday. He also said he gave one of his clients $60 to take a taxicab from St. Bernard Parish Prison back to wherever they are staying.

According to the Phillips Foundation’s Web site, Dai was the editor-in-chief of the GW Patriot, an alternative conservative student newspaper, when he attended The George Washington University in 2006. According to information Dai posted in September 2007 on the university’s online alumni directory, he lived in Naperville, Ill., helped run a “Defense Deparment regional defense counterterrorism/irregular warfare program” and then became assistant director of the Intelligence Community Center of Academic Excellence at Trinity Washington University, which prepares undergraduates for careers in intelligence.

On Tuesday at 4:40 p.m., O’Keefe, Dai and Basel were released from the jail and were waiting for a cab. Asked to comment, O’Keefe said only, “Veritas,” which is Latin for “truth.” O’Keefe’s biography on the blog site www.BigGovernment.com says he works at VeritasVisuals.com, although that site does not appear to be functioning.

O’Keefe spent most of the time in the men’s room off the jail’s lobby, then hustled to the cab when it arrived. As he ran into the back seat, he called out, “The truth shall set me free.” 

Robert Flanagan’s attorney, J. Garrison Jordan, said he believes his client works for the Pelican Institute. Asked the motivation for the alleged wiretap plot, he said: “I think it was poor judgment. I don’t think there was any intent or motive to commit a crime.”

Staff writer Laura Maggi contributed to this report.

This is when people get addicted to fame and do really stupid things. His first effort was, at some level, humorous. This is just flat out stupidity and a crime, and he deserves to serve some time on this. Anyone who tries to come to his defense is really going out on a limb – there is ZERO reason to justify his attempted wiretapping effort.

Props to the whole Koofers team: College Test-sharing Site Koofers Scores $1.55 Million | Digital Media Wire January 26, 2010

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Reston, Va. - Koofers, the developer of an online community where college students share old exams, quizzes and class notes for use as study aids, has raised $1.55 million in new funding, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The company, said that it still plans to raise another $500,000 in the round.

Though names of the new investors were not overtly disclosed, Anthony Lee, a general partner from Altos Ventures, and John Backus, a principal at New Atlantic Ventures, are listed among the company’s directors.

Koofers secured its first $500,000 in institutional funding in late 2008, after receiving seed funding from LaunchBox Digital.

 

Related Links:
http://snipurl.com/u6u8m (SEC filing)  

http://www.koofers.com

Congrats to the Koofers crew on continuing to help bring transparency into the whole college course/instructor selection process!

Airnergy Wi-Fi Powered Charger January 15, 2010

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Finally, a good reason to live with all that RF flowing around my office – wifi-powered charging!

A seriously neat product! Now, Apple needs to integrate it into the next iPhone, to allow me a full day’s use!

A new EU-focus incubator is launching, called The Difference Engine – wishing them all the best from the whole LaunchBox Digital team! January 6, 2010

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We believe that the early stage of any business is the most formative and can define how a team will evolve.  We also recognise that at such an early stage “money is not enough” – the right sort of intensive support is invaluable and the provision of the right mentoring is priceless.

That is why we set up The Difference Engine; an acceleration programme for early stage digital businesses.

Equally, we believe that access to acceleration programmes should not be limited and should be common place. Therefore, in a bid to help meet the unprecedented demand for such programmes, we have created a programme open to anyone from anywhere

This programme is supported by DigitalCity Business, Sunderland Software City and the Entrepreneurs’ Forum.  Through their combined expertise and experience we hope to make your dream a reality.  We think the North East of England is a great place to build a business and we would like you to join us here.

It is nice to see that the startup climate in the EU is getting a boost with a new incubator program that has just been launched, based in the UK, called TheDifferenceEngine. Maybe a little of Charles Babbage’s mojo will rub off on them!

“I think we must expect great things from you, Mr Potter…. After all, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named did great things — terrible, yes, but great.”

A must read for understanding the dangerous spiral that’s occurring between the Treasury and the Fed December 24, 2009

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For those interested in the true state of affairs of the US economy, this is a must read. Three big points are made here:

The fiscal year increase in US debt for 2009 clocked in at a sporty $1.885 Trillion dollars

The lack of transparency by the Fed continues unchecked

The vicious cycle of Treasury issuing debt that is subsequently bought by the Fed is actually occurring at a much higher volume that reported, due to more intentionally vague classification of purchaser data.

The effort to force more transparency for the Fed is something we all need to get behind in 2010. Practices like this are an effective means of destroying the value of US savings.

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