One More Post about the Puget Sound and Cars

April 8, 2011

So I was on the treadmill at the gym this morning at 6 am (who’s the man!) watching SportsCenter, and on comes a commercial for Callaway golf clubs. I mean, it’s the Masters this weekend in Augusta, so no surprise, right? Except, the Callaway commercial opens with a picture of a Lamborghini and starts talking about their major strategic partnership between the sports car and the driver (ha! double entendre! but I’m referring to the golf club.) What, you may ask, is the connection?

Composite materials, of course. And where is Lamborghini developing their composites? The University of Washington. In fact, it’s mentioned in this Seattle Times article: “…the lab is a sort of hub for Lamborghini to work with the school, Boeing and other partners, including golf-club manufacturer Callaway and Intel.”

And so I’ll say it one more time. Our region has a secret automotive industry cluster that no one talks about!

Read the rest of this entry »

Weekly B-MOW: Seattle Chamber Intercity Study Mission

March 26, 2011

Every year, the Seattle Chamber does an “intercity study mission,” bringing regional business, government and community leaders to a peer city for a three day exploration of similarities, differences and, most importantly, the best practices that we can take back and copy in our own region. This past week, a group of us traveled for this year’s trip to San Jose for an Intercity Study Mission to Silicon Valley.

The reason to do a study mission to Silicon Valley is obvious: as much as we fancy ourselves as a leading region for innovation, we pale in comparison to the sheer breadth and depth and magnitude of what has come out of that region – HP, Google, Adobe, Apple, Yahoo…the list goes on and on. So, what are those things that we can take from them?

Here are my top three takeaways:

Read the rest of this entry »

Bing – Not just your favorite type of cherry

July 2, 2009

Is anyone using Bing? I am still a giant fan of Google in general, but have been annoyed with my search results as of late, so I’m going to give Bing a try. So far it was super handy (and better than farecast or kayak) in looking at hotel room pricing in Hawaii. The search engine actually confirms whether or not you are getting  a deal based on past hotel room rates. What’s not to love there?

I’m curious as to whether or not other people are using it and what they’ve found it useful for, send your comments in!

Out performing the market – partial explanation

September 19, 2008

It’s been said that The PUget Sound region is doing better than the rest of the country when it comes to the economy.  Who knows if the news of this week changes that, but for now I say I believe it.

One reason is likely our global ties.  Consider the following rough estimate:

Boeing employment in our region: approx 75,000 people

Microsoft employment in our region: approx 40,000 people

Aerospace multiplier (how many jobs does an aerospace job support?): 3.2

Read the rest of this entry »

Interacting with Interactive media

August 21, 2008

Two things ended up on my computer screen this morning re: our growing interactive media industry. The first was an article in today’s Seattle Times about Photosynth, a new program from Microsoft that lets you combine multiple photos into a single 360 degree, 3-D rendering called a ‘synth’. According to the Times article, Photosynth is:

software that arranges photo sets in their real-world, 3-D context and allows people to navigate smoothly around the canals of Venice, for example, or zoom in to read the serial numbers on the space shuttle’s heat shields.

Micorosft says you can create a synth with as few as 10 photos or up to 300. It takes about 5 minutes to create one using a moderately powerful computer; big synths take a few hours. To show how far the technology has come: the Times reports that two years ago, creating a big synth would’ve taken a cluster of computers a day and a half.

This is an excellent illustration of our region’s abilities when it comes to Interactive Media, a subset of the IT industry. It’s been said that the interactive media industry, of which video games are a large part, is bigger Read the rest of this entry »