Business

Anything from starting a business to working in a corporate environment.

Futurist Ray Kurzweil Joins Google

Episode 936

Futurist and mega geek Ray Kurzweil is being hired as Director of Engineering at Google. He's a proponent of the Singularity theory, where computers will reach the point of being indistinguishable from humans.

Futurist Ray Kurzweil joins Google, will focus on machine learning and language processing (The Verge)…
http://www.theverge.com/2012/12/14/3768332/futurist-ray-kurzweil-joins-google-will-focus-on-machine-learning-and

digital signage

Kenneth from Los Angeles, CA

Episode 859

Kenneth has a tour company and he wants to create a visitors’ center that’s digital to attract more clientele. Leo says that restaurants are using HDTVs attached to a computer via PC interface that has software running that autoruns. Powerpoint would even do it. In fact, you can even crosslink Powerpoint to a Spreadsheet to automatically pull in the updated information. A Mac would probably have a more elegant look via Keynote and a MacMini would work great.

eLance

Dennis from Glendale, CA

Episode 860

Dennis needs a high end project manager that can understand databases. And it has to be custom. Leo suggests going to eLance.com to find a professional programmer. There’s over 1 million programmers on eLance and it’s a great place to find one.

eCommerce membership

Peter from Buffalo, NY

Episode 860

Peter has an eCommerce site for amateur astronomers. He’s been using SquareSpace to rebuild the site, but there’s no paid membership module to charge his members a monthly fee. Leo says SquareSpace has an audience feature. Peter wants an auto billing feature, rather than a manual option. They do have Paypal integration. There’s also Adobe Catalyst, but Leo thinks it’ll put Peter in the same manual issue. Amazon payments is another option.

Manufacturing an idea

Anthony from Orange County, CA

Episode 862

Chris has a patent and wants to know how to go about getting his gadget manufactured. Leo says that’s a challenge because it’s probably not cost effective to make it here in the US. China is probably the best idea. Check out ChinaSources.com. But that’s probably the least of your worries since it’s probably going to cost you $100,000 just to get to prototype and your first run of product.

Should I get the extended warranty on the 2013 car I buy because of it being more computerized?

Victoria from Santa Ana, CA

Episode 913

Leo thinks this extended warranty is just an upsell. He doesn't generally recommend extended warranties on personal electronics. It's basically insurance, and it is a profit center for the company selling it. Ultimately, the decision is up to her on whether or not she thinks she'd benefit from this.