Posts tagged Fortune
"Could algorithms help create a better venture capitalist?"
Ask anyone in venture capital about their business model and they will probably tell you it’s all about the “hits.” In the VC world, a hit is a startup that makes it big, returning many multiples of a venture fund’s initial investment. Hits are great for everyone—investors, entrepreneurs, job seekers—but the problem is they don’t happen very often. William Hambrecht, a legendary venture capitalist who made early investments in Apple, Genentech, and Google, says the odds of a big hit are about one in 10. “A few others will work out, and you’re going to lose in a lot,” he says.
"Improve urban infrastructure? There's an app for that"
Every weekday morning at approximately 6:30, Willem Heydendael, a 35-year-old medical consultant, hops on his bike and rides 15 miles along the Schuylkill River from his home in the Passyunk Square neighborhood of South Philadelphia to his office in Conshohocken, a suburb northwest of the city. Before he takes a pedal stroke, he performs an important ritual: he launches the Strava application on his iPhone and starts recording his ride. When he gets to work, he uploads the commute to Strava’s website, where he can see his route overlaid on a Google map, along with his average speed, distance, elevation gain, and a host of other metrics. “I like it because the rides add up and it’s nice to see the mileage I’ve done,” he says.
"Measuring Energy"

"Measuring Energy"
Fortune | February 2014

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In 2010 the Massachusetts Department of Transportation launched GreenDOT, an ambitious initiative to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of the state’s transportation system 40% by 2020. When he heard the news, Tim Lasker, the sustainability specialist for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), had one thought: How are we going to manage this? The first step was to review how much energy the MBTA was using for each task — but given that it was using different sources of energy (fuel oil, natural gas, electricity), how was Lasker to compare the efficiency of one to another?