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Tag: MIT

Cisco Acquires Meraki For $1.2B

Cisco is acquiring privately held Meraki.  Meraki will form Cisco’s new Cloud Networking Group. Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay approximately $1.2 billion in cash and retention-based incentives to acquire the entire business and operations of Meraki. The acquisition is expected to close in the second quarter of Cisco’s fiscal year 2013, subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory review. Headquartered in San Francisco, Calif., with offices in New York, London and Mexico, Meraki offers midmarket customers  on-premise networking solutions that can be centrally managed from the cloud. Meraki solutions support BYOD, guest networking, application control, WAN optimization, application firewall and other advanced networking services. Meraki was founded by members of MIT’s Laboratory for Computer Science. Investors in the company include Google Ventures, DAG Ventures...

Affectiva Raises $12M Series C Financing

MIT Media Lab spun-off startup Affectiva has secured $12 million in Series C financing, backed by Hong Kong businessman Li Ka-shing’s Horizons Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers Digital Growth Fund, with participation from existing investors. As a part of the financing, Frank Meehan at Horizons Ventures will join Affectiva’s board of directors and Mary Meeker, a partner at KPCB, will join as an Affectiva board observer. Affectiva was founded in 2009 by professor Rosalind W. Picard, and research scientist Rana el Kaliouby. The company builds technology that help detect emotional states, including Affdex, an automated facial coding platform, and Q Sensor, a wearable biometric sensor. Affectiva will use the new funds to accelerate Affdex development of emotional insights for all forms of online video...

UC Berkeley Joins MIT-Harvard EdX Initiative

EdX, the online learning initiative founded by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and launched in May, now has the University of California, Berkeley, joining  its platform. UC Berkeley will collaborate with edX to expand the group of participating “X Universities” – universities offering their courses on the edX platform. Through edX, the “X Universities” aim to provide interactive education wherever there is access to the Internet and will enhance teaching and learning through research about how students learn. EdX plans to add other “X Universities” from around the world to the edX platform in the coming months. UC Berkeley will offer two courses on edX this Fall, and the university will also serve as the inaugural chair of the to-be-formed “X University” Consortium. MIT launched its MITx online learning...

Echo Nest Closes $17.3M Financing Round

The Echo Nest, a music intelligence platform, has closed a $17.3 million financing round led by Norwest Venture Partners. Prior investors Matrix Partners, Commonwealth Capital Ventures, Fringe Partners, Jim Pallotta and board member Michael Brown also participated in this round. Jeff Crowe from Norwest will be joining the company's board of directors. This latest round of funding will help The Echo Nest further strengthen its market-leading position with a focus on international sales and marketing. The financing will also support continued development of 'Fanalytics,' data-driven solutions to better understand music fans. The Echo Nest powers smarter music applications for media companies and independent developers, with a customer base that reaches over 150 million music fans every month. Over 340 applications have been built on The Echo Nest platform,...

Researchers Design Algorithm To Let Cars Share Internet Connection

Two Wi-Fi-equipped cars sitting at a stoplight could exchange information free of charge, but if they wanted to send that information to the Internet, they’d probably have to use a paid service such as the cell network or a satellite system. At the ACM SIGACT-SIGOPS Symposium on Principles of Distributed Computing, taking place this month in Portugal, researchers from MIT, Georgetown University and the National University of Singapore (NUS) will present a new algorithm that would allow Wi-Fi-connected cars to share their Internet connections. “In this setting, we’re assuming that Wi-Fi is cheap, but 3G is expensive,” says Alejandro Cornejo, a graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and lead author on the paper. The general approach behind the algorithm is to...

Harvard’s Experiment Fund Gets New Members

Accel Partners, Breyer Capital, and Polaris Venture Partners join New Enterprise Associates (NEA) as partners of The Experiment Fund (www.Xfund.com), a seed-stage venture capital fund anchored at Harvard and designed to cultivate innovation and bold experimentation in the Boston area. Several new advisers are also joining the fund, including former Harvard Law School professor and former Director of the Berkman Center John Palfrey, Facebook co-founder Andrew McCollum, entrepreneur and MIT researcher Hugo Liu, and an ex-officio post created for the President of Harvard Student Agencies. Founded in 1967, HSA is the largest student-run corporation in the world, operating 11 product and service business units, retail space in Harvard Square, and the Harvard College Innovation Challenge. The Experiment Fund is active in the Harvard community and in the...

MIT Receives $1 Million To Support EdX Partnership

MIT has received a $1 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to support edX, MIT's new partnership in online education with Harvard University. Through edX,  the two institutions are collaborating to build a global community of online learners. It is anticipated that near-term course offerings from a range of MIT and Harvard schools will be included on the edX platform. The new Gates Foundation grant will support efforts to develop and offer a new, free prototype computer science online course through edX, and to partner with a postsecondary institution that targets low-income young adults to experiment with use of the course in a “flipped classroom” where lectures take place outside the classroom and homework is done in class. MIT and Harvard have committed to a...

MIT To Host Intel’s Big Data ISTC

MIT has won a national search to become the newest Intel Science and Technology Center (ISTC) for Big Data, which will be hosted by MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL). Justin Rattner (Chief technology officer, Intel): We are witnessing unprecedented growth in unstructured digital data and this will only accelerate further through the rapid increase of mobile Internet devices such as phones, cars and signs, and the projected development of the ‘Internet of Things,’ which will be constantly sensing the world around us. For this massive amount of what is called ‘Big Data’ to be useful, it has to be analyzed to be made understandable. Our goal is to innovate and guide this work across multiple fields, from medical to media, to extract meaning from large...

MIT Sloan CIO Symposium Winners

The 9th Annual MIT Sloan CIO Symposium announced two winners of the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium 2012 Award for Innovation Leadership. Catherine Bruno, VP and CIO of non-profit Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems and Chris Perretta, EVP and CIO of State Street Corporation were winners of the awards. The MIT Sloan CIO Symposium Award for Innovation Leadership honors Chief Information Officers (CIOs) who lead their organizations to pursue the innovative use of Information Technology (IT) and business processes to deliver business value. Professor Glen L. Urban, Dean Emeritus, MIT Sloan, presented the award and finalists included Susan Cooklin, CIO of Network Rail in the UK, and Bill Oates, CIO for the City of Boston.

MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition Winners Announced

CloudTop, a startup that enables developers of Web applications to integrate users’ online content, was awarded the Robert P. Goldberg $100,000 prize after beating out seven other finalist teams during the MIT $100K Entrepreneurship Competition finale held on the MIT campus. This year’s teams of finalists in the business plan contest – whose offerings included, among others, the cryopreserving of fish eggs and new patent-pending wireless throughput-increasing technology – emerged from a pool of 215 teams. By handling authentication and application programming interface integration, Cloudtop’s offering, Filepicker.io, allows developers to integrate Dropbox, Gmail, and other services into their application with only one line of code. Filepicker.io’s vision is to become the underlying infrastructure layer for Web applications that allow users to view, manage, and work on files...

Researchers Develop Robots To Record Neurons In Living Brain

Researchers at MIT and Georgia Tech have developed a way to automate the process of finding and recording information from neurons in the living brain. The researchers have shown that a robotic arm guided by a cell-detecting computer algorithm can identify and record from neurons in the living mouse brain with better accuracy and speed than a human experimenter. The new automated process eliminates the need for months of training and provides long-sought information about living cells’ activities, according to a statement released by MIT, and written by Anne Trafton of the MIT News Office. Using this technique, scientists could classify the thousands of different types of cells in the brain, map how they connect to each other, and figure out how diseased cells differ from...

MIT Tech Review Identifies Top 10 Emerging Technologies

The editors of MIT’s Technology Review have announced their annual list of the 10 emerging technologies. These innovations promise fundamental shifts in areas including energy, health care, computing, and communications. The ultimare criterion is straightforward says the Technology Review -  is the technology likely to change the world? Egg stem cells. Jonathan Tilly and Boston-based OvaScience have discovered a technique that could increase older women’s chances of having babies by tapping the rejuvenating potential of stem cells in their own ovaries. Ultra-efficient solar. Semprius, a startup based in Durham, North Carolina, has invented solar cells that could produce power more cheaply than fossil fuels by using tiny amounts of an efficient but expensive material called gallium arsenide. Light-field photography. In the biggest innovation in consumer cameras since the advent of digital photography, Lytro, of Mountain...

Locu Raises $4M Series A Round

Locu, a data-focused startup launched from Sir Tim Berners-Lee’s lab at MIT has raised a $4 Million Series A round of venture capital led by General Catalyst Partners, with participation from Chris Sacca’s Lowercase Capital, Lightbank and SV Angel. Locu’s existing angel investors, including Naval Ravikant and Babak Nivi of AngelPool, Quotidian Ventures, and Matt Ocko of Data Collective, also participated in the round. Larry Bohn, partner at General Catalyst, will be joining Locu’s board. Locu’s mission is to structure the world’s information, says the company. Locu is particularly focused on large, distributed, and complex data sets that previously could only be tackled with costly and hard-to-scale manual labor. Locu’s patent-pending approach features an elastic hierarchy of crowd workers and advanced machine learning, developed by a 10-person engineering...

MIT Establishes Center For Art, Science & Technology

MIT has received $1.5 million from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support a new Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST). A joint initiative of the Office of the Provost and the Schools of Architecture and Planning (SA+P) and School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (SHASS), the proposal was co- sponsored by Philip S. Khoury, associate provost and Ford International Professor of History; Adèle Naudé Santos, Dean of the School of Architecture and Planning; and Deborah K. Fitzgerald, Kenan Sahin Dean of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. Evan Ziporyn, Kenan Sahin Distinguished Professor of Music, will serve as CAST’s inaugural director. The grant will provide awards to faculty, researchers and curators seeking to develop cross-disciplinary courses, new research or exhibitions that span the arts, science and technology....

NSF Grants $10M For Printed Robots Project

A project to reinvent how robots are designed and produced is being funded by a $10-million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF). A team of researchers from MIT, Harvard, and the University of Pennsylvania aims to develop a desktop technology that would make it possible for the average person to design, customize, and print a specialized robot in a matter of hours. The 5-year project, called “An Expedition in Computing for Compiling Printable Programmable Machines,” is funded as part of the NSF’s “Expeditions in Computing” program. “This research envisions a whole new way of thinking about the design and manufacturing of robots, and could have a profound impact on society,” said Daniela Rus, leader of the project and a principal investigator at the MIT Computer Science...