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Nov 9, 2015

Science’s ‘Breakthrough’ winners earn over $21 million in prizes

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov 8 (Reuters) – Academia just turned a
little more glitzy for a select group of scientists.

Russian billionaire Yuri Milner handed out $21 million
Sunday in seven Breakthrough Prizes, the award for scientific
accomplishment he created three years ago alongside technology
giants including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, 23andme
founder Anne Wojcicki and Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The
prizes are worth $3 million, around three times the sum a Nobel
Prize winner receives. (ID:nL1N1312ZM)

Nov 2, 2015

Woman drops sex assault case against U.S. venture capitalist

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – A woman who accused prominent U.S. venture capitalist Joseph Lonsdale of sexual assault in a civil lawsuit has dropped all of her legal claims against him, according to a court filing on Monday.

Lonsdale, who had denied plaintiff Elise Clougherty’s allegations, also dropped counterclaims against her, including defamation, and each side will bear their own costs and expenses connected to the lawsuit, according to a joint filing.

Oct 9, 2015

Computer science now top major for women at Stanford University

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct 9 (Reuters) – Computer science has for
the first time become the most popular major for female students
at Stanford University, a hopeful sign for those trying to build
up the thin ranks of women in the technology field.

Based on preliminary declarations by upper-class students,
about 214 women are majoring in computer science, accounting for
about 30 percent of majors in that department, the
California-based university told Reuters on Friday.

Sep 25, 2015

Payments startup Square plans ‘imminent’ IPO filing -source

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept 25 (Reuters) – Payments startup Square
Inc plans to file for an “imminent” initial public offering,
according to a source familiar with the situation, potentially
putting it an a position to be a public company by the
end-of-year holiday season.

Square, a company that has pioneered the use of instant
payments over smartphones, is one of the most richly valued
companies in Silicon Valley, worth an estimated $6 billion,
according to media reports, based on its most recent round of
funding.

Sep 23, 2015

In Silicon Valley, some Indian Americans shun Clinton after election row

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Hillary Clinton, who has long cultivated the Indian-American community for both funds and votes, is tapping into the excitement around the Silicon Valley visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi this weekend. Next Monday she is holding a presidential campaign fundraiser expected to attract many prominent Californians with ties to India.

But some Indian-American Democrats from the region have told Reuters they won’t be attending the event, in part because they are upset about the way a candidate was treated in a 2014 race for a Silicon Valley congressional seat. Their frustration extends to other Democratic candidates and causes besides Clinton, who wasn’t involved in the race, but ignoring her campaign is a high-profile way to vent.

Sep 15, 2015
via Tales from the Trail

In Republican debate, Trump faces Tribble master

Photo

The most-awaited showdown at Wednesday’s Republican debate could be between Donald Trump and the constitutional law professor who has challenged the reality TV star turned front-runner’s knowledge of world affairs, moderator Hugh Hewitt.

Hewitt, a former Nixon aide, shot into the presidential campaign spotlight earlier this month, when he put Trump on the spot, asking him to identify the leaders of Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, the Nusra Front and Islamic State as part of his syndicated radio show.

Sep 11, 2015

Analysis: High-profile busts signal caution in start-up investing

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – At the end of July, Homejoy, a start-up company that used the Web to offer house cleaning, hung up its mops, leaving customers in the lurch and Google Ventures and other top-tier private equity backers out the more than $35 million they had sunk into the company.

    Now, with public markets on a see-saw and venture capitalists thinking the turmoil may hit private markets, many investors are wondering if more Homejoys lie ahead. That is leading them to look extra hard at companies that hold similar characteristics to Homejoy: on-demand, logistics-heavy businesses that cater to consumers rather than businesses.

Sep 11, 2015

High-profile busts signal caution in start-up investing

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – At the end of July, Homejoy, a start-up company that used the Web to offer house cleaning, hung up its mops, leaving customers in the lurch and Google Ventures and other top-tier private equity backers out the more than $35 million they had sunk into the company.

Now, with public markets on a see-saw and venture capitalists thinking the turmoil may hit private markets, many investors are wondering if more Homejoys lie ahead. That is leading them to look extra hard at companies that hold similar characteristics to Homejoy: on-demand, logistics-heavy businesses that cater to consumers rather than businesses.

Sep 10, 2015

Ellen Pao won’t appeal verdict in gender discrimination trial

By Sarah McBride

(Reuters) – Ellen Pao, the former venture capitalist who lost a high-profile discrimination case against her former employer earlier this year, said on Thursday that she would not pursue an appeal of the court’s decision.

Her lawsuit against one of the best-known U.S. venture firms, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, helped spark a wide and ongoing discussion about gender and the U.S. technology industry.

Sep 9, 2015
via Tales from the Trail

In San Francisco, Ben Carson turns coy on his technorati ties

Photo

Presidential hopeful Ben Carson dropped an unexpected name Tuesday when asked about his Silicon Valley supporters: rival White House hopeful Carly Fiorina.

“I’ve known a lot of people in technology,” the retired neurosurgeon told reporters after speaking to members of the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco. “Carly Fiorina was a good friend of mine for many, many  years, and she still is.”