Technology

VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Businesses should tap Indiana's 'invisible work force'Restricted Content

August 28, 2006
Greg Johnson
Based on an analysis of biographical accounts, both Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison appear to have been challenged by dyslexia, a reading and comprehension developmental disorder that can be severe. Few today would question the astonishing contributions these individuals made to humanity. Despite the severity of the challenges that some of these children face, many adapt and conquer, entering the Indianapolis community as successful working adults. There are many stories of achievement about children exceeding expectations, from a teenager with...
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IEDC shelves proposal to copy Ohio initiative: Program matches promising startups with capitalRestricted Content

August 28, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
An Ohio program launched in 2003 to urge development of extremely earlystage companies has already spurred investments worth $239 million in 68 Buckeye startups. Venture capitalists would like to duplicate the program here. But their proposal has been languishing at the Indiana Economic Development Corp. for a month. "We have the application. We haven't done anything with it," said IEDC Director of Small Business and Entrepreneurship Bruce Kidd. "This is a classic steeple chase. You've got lots of hurdles to...
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Woman sets sights on freedom: Disability isn't keeping shop owner from goalRestricted Content

August 28, 2006
Candace Beaty
Two doors opened for Pam Evans on Aug. 5-one to her own clothing store and the other to her independence. The Cherry Shop represents both to Evans, who lost most of her sight over the course of a weekend in 1998 to a genetic eye disease called angioid streaks. Left with only her peripheral vision, she also lost her career in real estate and corporate sales. After a period of depression, Evans decided she wouldn't lose it all. "I felt...
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Putting a spin on 911: Law-enforcement agencies embrace reverse systemRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Scott Olson
Langsenkamp, CEO of Sigma Micro Corp. in Indianapolis, began conducting research on the patented Reverse 911 Interactive Community Notification System in 1990. The technology, however, didn't hit the market en masse until a decade later. Today, roughly 350 law enforcement agencies in the United States and Canada, including those in Carmel and Beech Grove, use it to blast warnings to residents. "It was the first system that ever allowed people to dial phone numbers and deliver messages based on the...
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NOTIONS: Mailbox of plenty could yield empty pocketsRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Bruce Hetrick
Bruce Hetrick is on vacation this week. In his absence, this column, which appeared on Aug.19, 2002, is being reprinted. Dear Reader: In our nation's capital, at the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and North Capitol Street, the Smithsonian Institution has converted a former post office into the National Postal Museum. Carved into the white granite wall is an inscription called "The Letter." Written by former Harvard University President Charles W. Eliot and edited by former U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, it...
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Long-distance diagnoses are company's specialty: NearMed to provide radiology services to hospitalsRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Tom Murphy
An Indianapolis health care startup plans to begin diagnosing patients this fall without actually seeing any of them face to face. NearMed will venture into the fastgrowing market for "teleradiology" by offering a network of doctors around the clock and radiology subspecialists who work days and evenings to read X-rays and other images transmitted over a secure computer network. The Intech Park-based company will call on radiologists in Indiana, Texas and Idaho. In addition, it will provide clients with picture...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Programmers make lousy site designersRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Tim Altom
Many, perhaps most, Web sites are hard to use. That applies to commercial sites, personal sites, almost any kind of site. In the early days of the Web, nobody was surprised at this, because the Web was a dancing bear. The wonder wasn't that it danced gracefully, but that it danced at all. Today, visitors are much more discerning. In fact, there is a cottage industry in lambasting poorly designed sites. One of my favorite places to go on the...
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Duty in Iraq inspires reservist's invention: Mtek founder hoping face mask will save livesRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Scott Olson
Impressed with the design, which military personnel admitted was years ahead of what's now in use, the Army's Soldier Systems Center purchased 10 of the prototypes Aug. 1 for testing. Mahan, 23, of Martinsville, ultimately hopes to create manufacturing jobs in Indiana by mass-producing the face masks for the military and law-enforcement agencies. With the help of his father, cousin and close friend, he's formed Mtek Weapon Systems to start the process. "It's definitely a radical departure from anything that's...
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Professor reinvents classroom: Improving interaction reason behind DyKnowRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Scott Olson
Dave Berque knew his first college teaching assignment couldn't get any worse when a fire in the overhead lights barely got a reaction from his students. "I was in a room with more than 100 people and only seven noticed it," said the chairman of DePauw University's Computer Science Department. "They were spending all of their energy copying notes and couldn't think about what was going on." The experience as a graduate student in the mid-1980s at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Leap of faith? IPO planned for new firm with no assetsRestricted Content

August 21, 2006
Greg Andrews
Entrepreneur J. Smoke Wallin, bestknown as CEO of software maker eSkye Solutions, hopes to raise $60 million in an initial public offering for a new Indianapolis company that doesn't yet own anything. Sound bizarre? Perhaps. But Wallin's Taliera Corp. is just the latest in a long line of so-called "blank check" companies that raise money with the intention of going out and purchasing an operating business. In this case, Wallin has his sights on the alcoholic-beverage industry, though the company...
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Once-shuttered startup NoInk trades hands once more: Global Health Exchange buys software firmRestricted Content

August 14, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Call it a cautionary tale for entrepreneurs with a happy ending. After enduring a failed sale to a venture-capital-backed California firm, managers of NoInk LLC in January bought back the assets of their shuttered company and resurrected it. Now, just seven months later, they've sold NoInk again-this time to an acquirer who offers a better fit. "So many small companies are desperate for money, but don't [just] take money at any cost," said NoInk President David Kerr. "Be aware of...
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Six sites named 'Shovel Ready': State program designed to speed permit process for fast-track developersRestricted Content

August 14, 2006
Scott Olson
State officials have added another arrow to their quiver of economic-development incentives meant to attract companies to Indiana. A new pilot program, known as Shovel Ready, certifies land that can be rapidly developed. The aim is to make the properties more attractive to companies by cutting the time it takes to navigate the permitting process. "The ability to expedite a company's development will make us more competitive than perhaps we have been in the past," said Chris Pfaff, director of...
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Pools of Fun: Diving in the deep end Homebuilder's 'experiment' still paying off 25 years laterRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Julie Young
In 1981, few central Indiana residents considered an inground pool a backyard necessity, but Plainfield custom homebuilder Larry Good added one to a spec home anyway-and jumped into the deep end of a new enterprise. "After it was installed, the home sold immediately," said Bruce Holmes, CEO of the company Good launched. Pools of Fun started with one location and four employees. Today, it has five locations, a range of products and 90 full-time employees who share ownership of the...
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Create-a-job program serving disabled threatened: Federal funding cuts could mean early end for options available through customized employment initiativeRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Andrea Muirragui
Bryan Ballard and Cody Feldman never dreamed they'd end up here, soaking up the sun along Indianapolis' downtown canal, peddling frozen treats from their very own ice cream cart. They certainly never planned to become business partners when they met as adolescents playing Special Olympics basketball. But it happened anyway, thanks to a federally funded program intended to help significantly disabled individuals find work that fits their interests and skills. What makes the so-called customizedemployment effort unusual is its emphasis...
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EYE ON THE PIE: Your eye-dentity is the key to our futureRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Morton Marcus
By my calculations, the U.S. population will reach 300 million on or about Oct. 15. There is no need to specify the hour and minute. The population clock at the U.S. Bureau of the Census indicates that we are adding to our numbers at a rate of nearly one person each 10 seconds. Even though our population growth rate has been declining, the absolute growth numbers, and their implications, remain staggering. For example, if we average two persons per housing...
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Bonds' shaky support threatens Crane biz park: Region attempts to build on base's stay of executionRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
During his first months in office, Gov. Mitch Daniels' top priority was engineering a stay of execution for the Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center, 90 miles southwest of Indianapolis. Losing its 5,200 employees and contractors would have been a devastating blow to the region. Daniels' lobbying effort in Washington, D.C., was so successful that the Association of Defense Communities last month recognized him as "2006 Public Official of the Year." But troubles with local financing for a new business park...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Beware the dangers of PowerPoint attachmentsRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Tim Altom
In a bizarre twist on the term "Power-Point poisoning," some black-hat programmer with way too much time on his hands has created a PowerPoint presentation that, when opened as an attachment to an e-mail, plants a piece of spyware on your system that sends home to the mothership every keystroke and mouse click. Businessfolk in the Midwest need not panic, however, because the offending PowerPoint is easy to spot: it's in Chinese. In the business, this sort of infection is...
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WellPoint putting members' medical records online: Access to electronic medical information could reduce health care errrors and avoid unneccesary proceduresRestricted Content

August 7, 2006
Scott Olson
A benefits package WellPoint Inc. unveiled in July includes an ambitious effort that enables its 34 million members to access their medical records online. WellPoint's initiative to make the records available electronically is but one example of a national movement, backed by President Bush, to make all medical records available online within the next 10 years. Advocates say online systems can reduce medical errors and avoid unnecessary procedures by making patients' medical needs and histories available to doctors instantaneously. Indianapolis-based...
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Venture Center's Beck plans seed capital fund: Former Rose-Hulman Ventures prez returns to townRestricted Content

July 31, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Over the last three years at the helm of Indiana Venture Center Inc., one thing became all too clear to Steve Beck: Not much money is available locally for early-stage companies. So he's going to raise some himself. Last week, Beck, 59, announced he's stepping down as Indiana Venture Center president to become co-managing director of IVC Equity Partners, a new local seed capital fund. His IVC Equity cofounder is Scott Prince, 38, a Columbus native and Indiana University graduate...
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Ethanol backer harvesting investors: Cardinal, others see biofuel potential, while skeptics see risk 982 1372 1071 1392IBJ's Life Sciences & Biotech Magazine looks at the future of biofuel production in Indiana. SECTIONBRestricted Content

July 31, 2006
Chris O\'malley
IBJ's Life Sciences & Biotech Magazine looks at the future of biofuel production in Indiana. SECTIONBDuring one day this month, Randolph County farmer Troy Prescott drove hundreds of miles to visit three western Ohio towns-gladhanding potential backers gathered at a VFW hall, an armory and a restaurant. And just a few days ago, in Fishers, he spelled out his vision to more than 50 people, some wearing suspenders and down-on-the-farm twangs. Prescott isn't running for Congress, but his 25-city road...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Is becoming a podcaster dream marketing?Restricted Content

July 24, 2006
Tim Altom
Imagine that your customers are so eager to hear from you that you don't even need to send them newsletters or e-mails, that they check each day, or even several times a day, to see if you have anything to tell them. What a dream marketing campaign, eh? There are catches, of course. Lots of them. But in the right circumstances, this come-and-get-it approach can work. It's known as "podcasting," a name that's a linguistic weld job so common in...
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Hitching its wagon to central Indiana: Wells Fargo quietly lassoes big share of local loansRestricted Content

July 24, 2006
Matthew Kish
How big is the portfolio? Very big. How does it stack up to its rivals? Nobody knows for sure. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. requires banks to report the deposits they hold at branches, but it doesn't require banks to spell out how much commercial business they're generating geographically. "It's one of the biggest frustrations of the bank information that we [compile]," said Karen Dorway, president of Bauer Financial Inc., a Coral Gables, Fla.-based bank rating service that tracks market...
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Conseco takes fresh look at product development: New strategy emphasizes shared resources, efficiencyRestricted Content

July 17, 2006
Tom Murphy
Conseco Inc. rolled out a fresh blueprint for product development earlier this year, and it was high time the insurer did so, say analysts who follow the company. The Carmel-based holding company is combining the resources of its subsidiaries and developing a corporate-wide system to pump out products more efficiently for its two main operating segments, Conseco Insurance Group and Chicago-based Bankers Life. It hopes to see results soon. Conseco Insurance Group launched only four new products in 2004 and...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Will telecom reform bring cell service to remote areas?Restricted Content

July 17, 2006
Patrick Barkey
Those of us who spend a lot of time in airports get an effective education in the economics of competition by observing-and paying-the fares charged by airlines. It's really quite simple. Fly a route served by several airlines, especially if one of them is a low-cost, no-frills carrier such as Southwest, and fares will be reasonably low. But if you are unlucky enough to fly to or from a smaller city, or even a large one where a single carrier...
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Dow AgroSciences seeks better vaccine: Plant-based preventive measure loaded with potentialRestricted Content

July 17, 2006
Tom Murphy
Imagine a vaccine that kills salmonella bacteria in chickens long before they reach the food-processing center, possibly reducing the chance of a food-borne illness landing on your dinner plate. That's one of the possibilities researchers are thinking about on the northwest side of Indianapolis, where Dow AgroSciences has become a pioneer in the new frontier of plant-based vaccines. Earlier this year, the subsidiary of Dow Chemical Co. received the world's first regulatory approval for a plant-made vaccine from the U.S....
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