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Xage now supports hierarchical blockchains for complex implementations

Xage is working with utilities, energy companies and manufacturers to secure their massive systems, and today it announced some significant updates to deal with the scale and complexity of these customers’ requirements, including a new hierarchical blockchain. Xage enables customers to set security policy, then enforce that policy on the blockchain. Company CEO Duncan Greatwood […]
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Xage now supports hierarchical blockchains for complex implementations – TechCrunch

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Xage now supports hierarchical blockchains for complex implementations

Xage is working with utilities, energy companies and manufacturers to secure their massive systems, and today it announced some significant updates to deal with the scale and complexity of these customers’ requirements, including a new hierarchical blockchain.

Xage enables customers to set security policy, then enforce that policy on the blockchain. Company CEO Duncan Greatwood says as customers deploy his company’s solutions more widely, it has created a set of problems around scaling that they had to address inside the product, including the use of blockchain.

As you have multiple sites involved in a system, there needed to be a way for these individual entities to operate, whether they are connected to the main system or not. The answer was to provide each site with its own local blockchain, then have a global blockchain that acts as the ultimate enforcer of the rules once the systems reconnected.

“What we’ve done is by creating independent blockchains for each location, you can continue to write even if you are separated or the latency is too high for a global write. But when the reconnect happens with the global system, we replay the writes into the global blockchain,” Greatwood explained.

While classical blockchain doesn’t allow these kinds of separations, Xage felt it was necessary to deal with its particular kind of use case. When there is a separation, a resynchronization happens where the global blockchain checks the local chains for any kinds of changes, and if they are not consistent with the global rules, it will overwrite those entries.

Greatwood says these changes can be malicious if someone managed to take over a node or they could be non-malicious, such as a password change that wasn’t communicated to the global chain until it reconnected. Whatever the reason, the global blockchain has this power to fix the record when it’s required.

Another issue that has come up for Xage customers is the idea that majority rules on a blockchain, but that’s not always a good idea when you have multiple entities working together. As Greatwood explains, if one entity has 600 nodes and the other has 400, the larger entity can always enforce its rules on the smaller one. To fix that, they have created what they are calling a supermajority.

“The supermajority allows us to impose impose rules such as, after you have the majority of 600 nodes, you also have to have the majority of the 400 nodes. Obviously, that will give you an overall majority. But the important point is that the company with 400 nodes is protected now because the write to the ledger account can’t happen unless a majority of the 400 node customers also agrees and participates in the write,” Greatwood explained.

Finally, the company also announced scaling improvements, which reduce computing requirements to run Xage by 10x, according to the company.

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This is the Pixel 4, the handset that literally everyone saw coming. Even by Google’s standards, the handset leaked like crazy. Some was almost certainly by design, as the company looked to hype its new flagship amid slowing smartphone sales. That said, showing up for pre-order on two different sites in the past few days is a lot, even by Pixel Standards.

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From the front, at least, the new device doesnu2019t really stand out. The standard Pixel 4 maintains some pretty sizable bezels on the top and bottom, even as most of the industry has moved toward a notch or hole punch to accommodate the camera.

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The back of the device is another story entirely, of course. After a few generations of pushing back on multiple camera setups, Google is finally embracing them with the 4. The pair of cameras are positioned in a square configuration, similar to the iPhone 11.

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The sensor is up top and the flash is on the bottom, with the wide angle and telephoto sitting next to one another in the middle. There is a 12-megapixel and a 16-megapixel, per earlier leaks. Iu2019ve included a handful of random shots Iu2019ve taken here. They leave a little to be desired u2014 more when we get our hands on the device later for a proper review, but this should give you some idea of what weu2019re working with here.

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Honestly, Iu2019m pretty excited to see whatu2019s on offer with the device here. Googleu2019s always done a good job using AI/ML to augment the single-lens configuration, so the idea of what itu2019s capable of producing in tandem with dual lenses could well make it a contender for one of the best camera phones on the market.

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Imaging has been improved across the board here, including the already solid Night Sight, Portrait Mode and zoom, which uses a hybrid of digital and the physical telephoto lens. I mean, if itu2019s good enough for Annie Leibovitz, right?

n

Recorder is an exciting new prospect for someone who makes a living interviewing people such as myself. I tried it out, but honestly, it leaves a bit to be desired in this super noisy setting. Again, a more official write-up of that later, though I do appreciate that the company is doing the transcribing on-board, versus the cloud.

n

n

That means a faster response and no concern over more sensitive stuff. Once recording, youu2019ll see a gray wave form that turns blue when speech is detected. Tapping u201ctranscriptu201d will show the speech. From there you can share it via social media or save it to Google Drive.

n

CMB 8450

n

Itu2019s fun to see Google embracing gestures here, as a natural followup to its squeezable Active Edge. Admittedly, itu2019s something that plenty of phone makers have tried with limited success. Perhaps the inclusion of the new radar chip will save it from accidental gestures and make it more user-friendly.

n

Screen Shot 2019 10 15 at 12.01.18 PM

n

Or maybe the inclusion of a kind of game where you can wave at Pikachu and other Poku00e9mon will help with adoption. I donu2019t have particularly high hopes on either one, if Iu2019m being honest. Training users on a new form of input is an uphill climb, though the gestures are pretty responsive. At least everyone is already familiar with face unlocks, which is augmented by the aforementioned radar feature, detecting the user as they reach for the phone and beginning the unlock process from there.

n

The handset ships October 24, starting at $799. Look for a much meatier review in the near future.

n

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This is the Pixel 4, the handset that literally everyone saw coming. Even by Google’s standards, the handset leaked like crazy. Some was almost certainly by design, as the company looked to hype its new flagship amid slowing smartphone sales. That said, showing up for pre-order on two different sites in the past few days […]

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My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out ……. visit This link ……. http://www.Wic3.com

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Lime and Spin scooters are now legal in SF”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

Uber, Lime and Spin have officially deployed their electric scooters on the streets of San Francisco as part of the city’s permitting program. Last month, the city announced Uber’s JUMP, Lime, Ford’s Spin and Scoot were granted permits to operate the shared electric scooter services. Scoot, however, has operated in the city since last year.

n

The new program allows Scoot to operate 1,000 scooters, down from the 1,250 it had previously operated, while JUMP, Spin and Lime will be able to deploy 500 each. That cap for new providers will increase to 750 on December 15 and 1,000 on Febeuary 15, 2020, as long as each company continues to meet the terms and conditions of the permit.

n

“The new Powered Scooter Share Permit includes a more stringent complaint tracking process through a shared complaint database,” the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency wrote in a blog post on Friday. “Operators will be required to track all complaints (and the resolution of these complaints) and provide this information to SFMTA on a regular basis. Operators will also be required to take proactive measures to ensure that their customers are aware that sidewalk riding is both unsafe and illegal and implement deterrent measures, including graduated monetary penalties and suspensions for those who engage in unsafe riding behavior.”

n

It’s worth pointing out that Uber will now benefit from both JUMP and Lime ridership. That’s because of the partnership Uber and Lime formed last July. Through the partnership, riders can reserve Lime scooters through the Uber app. In SF, however, this integration is not yet live. This means riders in SF can soon access JUMP scooters, Lime scooters, JUMP e-bikes, cars and transit info through a single app. For those with app fatigue, this is a major advantage for Uber.

n

Bird, which owns Scoot, could have applied for its own permit, but CEO Travis VanderZanden “didn’t want to get greedy with it,” he told me earlier this month at TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco.

n

For both Lime and Spin, it’s been quite the journey to get to this point of city-sanctioned deployment. After deploying their respective scooters without permission last March, they were forced to remove their scooters and then apply for a permit. Lime and Spin were not granted permits and each subsequently appealed the city’s decision. The city denied both of those appeals, but a neutral hearing officer recommended the city allow both Spin and Lime to operate scooters in the future.

n

Fast forward to today, and the city legislators have now proposed the creation of an office of emerging technology. The idea is that before any new tech is tested or piloted, the city would review it with all relevant departments and determine if it results in the overall common good.

n

San Francisco Board of Supervisors President Norman Yee has already secured $250,000 to fund this new office. If his proposal passes, the office could open this January. That would mean any new tech, like automatic repositioning of micromobility vehicles, for example, would go through a more rigorous vetting process.

n

Uber, which is exploring sidewalk detection and autonomous re-parking of scooters and bikes, imagines cities seeing the benefit in that tech. In San Francisco, where it requires vehicles lock to a stationary object, Uber envisions a robotic lock that retracts itself.

n

“I suspect that the reason many cities require locks is for the same reason we think robotic tech is appealing,” Uber Head of New Mobility Robotics Alan Wells told TechCrunch. “If it’s locked to something, it’s far less likely to be in the way. I think the premise of the tech is to provide a far more flexible way to deliver that end-result of vehicles that are not in the way.”

n”,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

Uber, Lime and Spin have officially deployed their electric scooters on the streets of San Francisco as part of the city’s permitting program. Last month, the city announced Uber’s JUMP, Lime, Ford’s Spin and Scoot were granted permits to operate the shared electric scooter services. Scoot, however, has operated in the city since last year. […]

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Megan Rose Dickey is a senior reporter at TechCrunch focused on diversity, inclusion and social justice. She also covers transportation and the on-demand economy.

nn

She previously spent two years at Business Insider covering tech startups focused on the shared economy, IoT and music industry.

nn

She graduated from the University of Southern California in 2011 with a degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism.

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My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out ……. visit This link ……. http://www.Wic3.com

n”},”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/2019/10/15/uber-lime-and-spin-scooters-are-now-legal-in-sf/#comment-676173″,”type”:”comment”,”author_avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”techcrunch”:{“avatar”:”https://ct.yimg.com/cy/1768/39361574426_98028a_64sq.jpg”,”company”:”(no company found)”,”title”:”(no title found)”,”user”:”YBNKDSRQH2AKUU4OEKPON6WX7A”},”_links”:{“self”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/comments/676173″}],”collection”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/comments”}],”up”:[{“embeddable”:true,”post_type”:”post”,”href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts/1896367″}]}}]],”author”:[{“id”:9528656,”name”:”Megan Rose Dickey”,”url”:””,”description”:”Megan Rose Dickey is a senior reporter at TechCrunch focused on diversity, inclusion and social justice. She also covers transportation and the on-demand economy.rnrnShe previously spent two years at Business Insider covering tech startups focused on the shared economy, IoT and music industry.rnrnShe graduated from the University of Southern California in 2011 with a degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism.rnrn- See more at: https://www.crunchbase.com/person/megan-rose-dickey#sthash.ir4VFt2z.dpufrnrnPGP fingerprint for email is:u00a02FA7 6E54 4652 781A B365 BE2E FBD7 9C5F 3DAE 56BD”,”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/author/megan-rose-dickey/”,”slug”:”megan-rose-dickey”,”avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/e64a35398ab7fb3ff0de4f0817dc1c78?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/e64a35398ab7fb3ff0de4f0817dc1c78?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/e64a35398ab7fb3ff0de4f0817dc1c78?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”links”:{“facebook”:”https://www.facebook.com/meganrosedickey”,”twitter”:”https://twitter.com/meganrosedickey”,”linkedin”:”http://www.linkedin.com/in/meganrosedickey”,”crunchbase”:”https://www.crunchbase.com/person/megan-rose-dickey”},”position”:”Senior Reporter”,”cbDescription”:”

Megan Rose Dickey is a senior reporter at TechCrunch focused on diversity, inclusion and social justice. She also covers transportation and the on-demand economy.

nn

She previously spent two years at Business Insider covering tech startups focused on the shared economy, IoT and music industry.

nn

She graduated from the University of Southern California in 2011 with a degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism.

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Electric scooters seen in Los Angeles, California on January 29, 2019. Emergency rooms have recently seen a sharp increase in visits due to electric scooter related injuries. (Photo by Ronen Tivony/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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aims to change the definition of good photography with Pixel 4’s software-defined camera”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

Google’s new Pixel 4 camera offers a ton of new tricks to improve its photographic chops, and to emphasize the point, it had Professor Mark Levoy, who leads camera technology development at Google Research, up onstage to talk about the Pixel 4’s many improvements, including its new telephoto lens, updated Super Res Zoom technology and Live HDR+ preview.

n

Subject, lighting, lens, software

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Levoy started by addressing the oft-cited saying among photographers that what’s most important to a good photo is first subject, then lighting and followed after that by your hardware: i.e. your lens and camera body. He said that he and his team believe that there’s a different equation at play now, which replaces that camera body component with something else: software.

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Screen Shot 2019 10 15 at 10.59.55 AM

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Lens is still important in the equation, he said, and the Pixel 4 represents that with the addition of a telephoto lens to the existing wide-angle hardware lens it offers. Levoy also offered the opinion that a telephoto is more useful generally than a wide angle, clearly a dig at Apple’s addition of an ultra-wide-angle hardware lens to its latest iPhone 11 Pro models.

n

Google Pixel 4 Camera

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In this context, that means Google’s celebrated “computational photography” approach to its Pixel camera tech, which handles a lot of the heavy lifting involved when it takes a photo from a small sensor, which tend to be bad, and turns that into something pretty amazing.

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Levoy said that he calls their approach a “software-defined camera,” which most of the time just means capturing multiple photos, and combining data from each in order to produce a better, single, final picture.

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Screen Shot 2019 10 15 at 11.07.56 AM

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What’s new for Pixel 4

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There are four new features for the Pixel 4 phone powered by computational photography, which include Live HDR with dual-exposure controls, which shows you a real-time image of what the final photo will look like with the HDR treatment applied, instead of just giving you a very different-looking final shot. It also bakes in exposure controls that allow you to adjust the highlights and shadows in the image on the fly, which is useful if you want bolder highlights or silhouettes from shadows, for instance.

n

Also new is “learning-based white balance,” which addresses the tricky issue of getting your white balance correct. Levoy said that Google has been using this approach in white-balancing night-sight photos since the introduction of that feature with Pixel 3, but now it’s bringing it to all photo modes. The result is cooler colors, and particularly in tricky lighting situations when whites tend to be incorrectly exposed as orange or yellow.

n

The new wide-range portrait mode makes use of info from both the dual-pixel imaging sensors that Pixel 4 uses, as well as the new second lens to derive more depth data and provide an expanded, more accurate portrait mode to separate the subject from the background. It now works on large objects and portraits where the person in focus is standing farther back, and it provides better bokeh shape (the shape of the defocused elements in the background) and better definition of strands of hair and fur, which has always been tricky for software background blur.

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Lastly, Night Sight mode gets overall improvements, as well as a new astral photography mode specifically for capturing the night sky and star fields. The astral mode provides great-looking night sky images with exposure times that run multiple minutes, but all with automatic settings and computational algorithms that sort out issues like stars moving during that time.

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Still more to come

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Google wanted to emphasize the point that this is a camera that can overcome a lot of the problems faced typically by small sensors, and it brought out heavyweight photography legend Annie Lebowitz to do just that. She showed some of the photos she’s been capturing both with Pixel 3 and Pixel 4, and they did indeed look great, although the view from the feed doesn’t say quite as much as would print versions of the final photos.

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Levoy also said that they plan to improve the camera over time via software updates, so this is just the start for Pixel 4. Based on what we saw onstage, it definitely looks like a step-up from the already excellent Pixel 3, but we’ll need more time hands-on to see what it does compared to Apple’s much-improved iPhone 11 camera.

n

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Google’s new Pixel 4 camera offers a ton of new tricks to improve its photographic chops, and to emphasize the point, it had Professor Mark Levoy, who leads camera technology development at Google Research, up onstage to talk about the Pixel 4’s many improvements, including its new telephoto lens, updated Super Res Zoom technology and […]

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I’m using it now and it’s awesome! I’ve signed up for my account and have been bringing in fat paychecks. For real, my first week I made $302 and the second week I doubled it and then it kinda snowballed to $120 a day! juet folllow the course.. they will help you out… visit This Site ———->>> http://www.Wic3.com

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Darrell Etherington is a Writer at TechCrunch, focused on science, space and health tech startups. Darrell used to work for Apple and Shopify in their respective PR departments, but he does not currently hold any stock in either company.

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everything Google just announced at the Made By Google 2019 event”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

 

n

Google held its annual “Made By Google” hardware event this morning in New York City, where they launched all sorts of new gear back to back to back.

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Didn’t have time to watch the whole stream, but still want to know the bullet points of what’s new? We’ve got you covered.

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Stadia launch

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Stadia, Google’s cloud video game streaming service, will launch on November 19th.

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Pixel Buds

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Google Pixel buds

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Google went back to the drawing board with its answer to the AirPods. Shipping sometime in “Spring 2020,” the new Pixel Buds will cost $179. Google says the battery should last about five hours per charge, with the familiar floss-style charging case packing an additional 24 hours’ worth of charge. On-board microphones will adapt the sound based on your environment, and help to cancel out background noise like wind.

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Pixelbook Go

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Google Pixelbook Go

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It’s been a while since Google shipped a higher-end Chrome OS laptop u2014 but with Pixelbook Go, they’re taking another swing at it. It’s got a 13.3″ display, up to 16GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage, with the company promising around 12 hours of battery life. It’ll weigh roughly two pounds, with a base model that’ll cost $649.

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New Nest Aware

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Nest Aware (which lets you add cloud recording to your Nest cameras) used to cost a few bucks per device. Now it’s a flat fee, regardless of how many cameras you’ve got — $6 per month gets you 30 days of “event” history (read: just the bits of video where things are actually happening), while $12 per month gets you 60 days of event history or 10 days of 24/7 video history.

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Nest Aware also now lets you put your Nest Minis/Nest Hubs into a security-centric listening mode, with the smart speakers listening for things like smoke alarms and dogs barking and sending you notifications accordingly.

n

They’ll switch to the new pricing structure in “early 2020.”

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Nest Wifi

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EG7TM0pXYAIlB

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As rumored over the past few weeks, Google is mashing up the concepts of its Google Wifi mesh router with its Google Home speakers, voltroning them into Nest Wifi u2014 a router/smart speaker hybrid. They’ll ship starting on November 4th; a two-pack will cost $269, with a three-pack going for $349.

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New Nest Mini

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Google Nest Mini

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The Google Home Mini is now the “Nest Mini,” and a bit has changed beyond the name. It’s now wall-mountable without any adapters, with a speaker that Google says offers up double the bass. It has a new machine learning chip on board for faster responses, and more microphones to work better in louder environments. It’ll ship on October 22nd for $49.

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Pixelu00a04

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Google Pixel 4

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After an endless series of leaks, the next generation of Pixel u2014 Google’s flagship Android phone u2014 is officially official. The Pixel 4 will come in at 5.7″ with a 2,800mAh battery, while the Pixel 4 XL comes in at 6.3″ with a 3,700mAh battery. They’re both running on the Snapdragon 855 chipset with 6GB of RAM. They’ve both got “Project Soli” radar chips inside, allowing you to do things like switch songs, snooze alarms or silence calls by waving your hand over the phone without actually touching it.

n

The main focus here for Google is the cameras, with the company leaning hard into the idea of using machine-learning and AI-centric software to improve photos u2014 things like live HDR preview with dual exposure controls, AI-driven “learning” white balance and an improved Night Sight mode that can handle taking photos of star-lit nights. Both phones have two cameras on the back (12.2 megapixel f/1.7 main camera and a 16-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto lens) and one on the front (8 megapixels). You can read all about the new software-focused camera goods here.

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It’ll ship starting October 24th, starting at $799.

n

n”,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

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Greg Kumparak is an editor at TechCrunch.

nn

Greg started at TechCrunch in May of 2008. He led TechCrunch’s sister site MobileCrunch as editor until AOL acquired the company in 2010, at which point the editors of TechCrunch’s four main sites (TechCrunch, CrunchGear, MobileCrunch, TechCrunch UK) merged the sites under one domain.

nn

Best known for his gadget coverage, Kumparak has broken hundreds of stories within the space u2014 unearthing details on everything from abandoned Samsung smartphone prototypes to new Apple devices. He’s also one of the Internet’s most prolific “live bloggers”, having reported from the scene at dozens of international events for live audiences in the hundreds of thousands.

nn

He was one of the earliest writers to highlight and report on a number of companies that have since become “unicorns” (reaching a valuation of $1B or more), including Zenefits and Twilio.

nn

Kumparak is a frequent guest on TechCrunch’s Gadget, Apple, and Android podcasts, and often appears on stage as an interviewer or judge at TechCrunch’s meetups and Disrupt conferences.

nn

In 2012, Greg was featured on the BBC, Wired, Mashable, Engadget and many other outlets for a side project he called the “tARdis”, or the Augmented Reality TARDIS. By combining augmented reality with a handmade physical model, Greg was able to replicate the otherwise physically impossible “bigger on the inside” visual effect that commonly appears on television’s Doctor Who series.

“,”cbAvatar”:”https://crunchbase-production-res.cloudinary.com/image/upload/v1397184689/d45c9b9b954bcc0a697dae821253a36b.png”,”twitter”:”grg”,”_links”:{“self”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users/5188242″}],”collection”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users”}]}}],”replies”:[[{“id”:676175,”parent”:0,”author”:0,”author_name”:”Melissa Fox”,”author_url”:””,”date”:”2019-10-15T13:59:19″,”content”:{“rendered”:”

I’m using it now and it’s awesome! I’ve signed up for my account and have been bringing in fat paychecks. For real, my first week I made $302 and the second week I doubled it and then it kinda snowballed to $120 a day! juet folllow the course.. they will help you out… visit This Site ———->>> http://www.Wic3.com

n”},”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/2019/10/15/heres-everything-google-just-announced-at-the-made-by-google-2019-event/#comment-676175″,”type”:”comment”,”author_avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/de28105fd9325be0cc255f0b56694c9c?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”techcrunch”:{“avatar”:”https://ct.yimg.com/cy/1768/39361574426_98028a_64sq.jpg”,”company”:”(no company found)”,”title”:”(no title found)”,”user”:”YBNKDSRQH2AKUU4OEKPON6WX7A”},”_links”:{“self”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/comments/676175″}],”collection”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/comments”}],”up”:[{“embeddable”:true,”post_type”:”post”,”href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts/1897381″}]}}]],”author”:[{“id”:5188242,”name”:”Greg Kumparak”,”url”:””,”description”:””,”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/author/greg-kumparak/”,”slug”:”greg-kumparak”,”avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/9b107c9f9a43a21d8c93fcdefcc97dcd?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/9b107c9f9a43a21d8c93fcdefcc97dcd?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/9b107c9f9a43a21d8c93fcdefcc97dcd?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”links”:{“homepage”:”http://www.kumparak.com”,”twitter”:”https://twitter.com/grg”,”crunchbase”:”https://www.crunchbase.com/person/greg-kumparak”},”position”:”Editor”,”cbDescription”:”

Greg Kumparak is an editor at TechCrunch.

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Greg started at TechCrunch in May of 2008. He led TechCrunch’s sister site MobileCrunch as editor until AOL acquired the company in 2010, at which point the editors of TechCrunch’s four main sites (TechCrunch, CrunchGear, MobileCrunch, TechCrunch UK) merged the sites under one domain.

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Best known for his gadget coverage, Kumparak has broken hundreds of stories within the space u2014 unearthing details on everything from abandoned Samsung smartphone prototypes to new Apple devices. He’s also one of the Internet’s most prolific “live bloggers”, having reported from the scene at dozens of international events for live audiences in the hundreds of thousands.

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He was one of the earliest writers to highlight and report on a number of companies that have since become “unicorns” (reaching a valuation of $1B or more), including Zenefits and Twilio.

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Kumparak is a frequent guest on TechCrunch’s Gadget, Apple, and Android podcasts, and often appears on stage as an interviewer or judge at TechCrunch’s meetups and Disrupt conferences.

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In 2012, Greg was featured on the BBC, Wired, Mashable, Engadget and many other outlets for a side project he called the “tARdis”, or the Augmented Reality TARDIS. By combining augmented reality with a handmade physical model, Greg was able to replicate the otherwise physically impossible “bigger on the inside” visual effect that commonly appears on television’s Doctor Who series.

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launches Nest Wifi mesh router and extender with built-in Google Assistant”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

Today at its Google hardware event, Google introduced new mesh routers called Nest Wifi. This is a successor to the Google Wifi product it introduced a couple of years ago, but with a number of improvements. The new Nest Wifi consists of two types of devices: one is a router that plugs into your modem, and one “point” amplifies the signal and extends the network; it’s more powerful so you only need these two things.

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It’s available to pre-order, and will ship on November 4. It comes in a two-pack or three-pack variant, for $249 or $349 respectively, and will be available in eight countries at launch.

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Google says that Nest Wifi offers 2x better speed than Google Wifi, with up to 25% better coverage. That’s from the two-piece system, which Google says is probably enough to cover the same space as the three-puck Google Wifi original system.

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The hardware is designed to be placed out in the open — Google paid attention to design here to make sure it looks good enough to keep it where it’ll work best to provide a signal. And the “point” has a built-in speaker and microphone array, with onboard Google Assistant support, making it double as a smart speaker — which really does add to the overall value in terms of what you’re getting for the money.

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Like Google Wifi, it offers simple setup, parental and guest controls, as well as “seamless setup” for smart home devices from within the Google Home app.

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Screen Shot 2019 10 15 at 10.36.01 AM
nInterestingly, Google said that Google Wifi has been the top-selling mesh Wifi system in both the U.S. and Canada since its launch, so it’s clearly seeing a lot of success in this category. The company was also quick to point out that it has provided 15 updates to the original hardware since its launch, adding new features and improving performance, so expect a similar slew of post-purchase updates for Nest Wifi, too.

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n”,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

Today at its Google hardware event, Google introduced new mesh routers called Nest Wifi. This is a successor to the Google Wifi product it introduced a couple of years ago, but with a number of improvements. The new Nest Wifi consists of two types of devices: one is a router that plugs into your modem, […]

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Darrell Etherington is a Writer at TechCrunch, focused on science, space and health tech startups. Darrell used to work for Apple and Shopify in their respective PR departments, but he does not currently hold any stock in either company.

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I just started 6 weeks ago and I’ve gotten 2 check for a total of $2,200…this is the best decision I made in a long time! “Thank you for giving me this extraordinary opportunity to make extra money from home. This extra cash has changed my life in so many ways, thank you!…. visit This link ……. http://www.Wic3.com

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Darrell Etherington is a Writer at TechCrunch, focused on science, space and health tech startups. Darrell used to work for Apple and Shopify in their respective PR departments, but he does not currently hold any stock in either company.

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unreliable research bury your healthcare startup?”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

For healthtech founders and funders, scientific claims and conclusions are more than policy u2014 business models depend upon the lucid appraisal of clinical problems, evaluating inadequacies in current standards of care, a clear understanding of disease pathways, and designing superior interventions.u00a0

n

At each step along this value chain, founders stand on the shoulders of the scientists that preceded them to obtain reliable evidence. When they promote their own innovations, credibility is a critical prerequisite. But where does credibility come from?

n

A 2012 study selecting 50 common cookbook ingredients found that 80% had publications linking their consumption to cancer risk; according to some reports, tomatoes, lemons, and celery all cause cancer. The to-and-fro of nutrition science is emblematic of a larger dynamic related to fickle research findings across disciplines. Because investigators seeking to build upon seminal studies struggle to reproduce the original findings, researchers have deemed the problem a reproducibility crisis.u00a0

n

Simulations have found that up to 85% of published findings could not be replicated. In turn, tens of billions of dollars are wasted and countless patient lives are adversely impacted annually due to unreliable research.u00a0

n

Historically, academic research and healthcare VC have had considerable overlap, but in recent years, this co-dependence has increased as researchers are looking more and more for financial support. Government research fundingu00a0has seen a steady decline, with private sources now supporting almost 60% of the spend. Biomedical VC has been portrayed as a critical source of risk capital for early-stage research and a key engine for its translation at later stages.

“,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

For healthtech founders and funders, scientific claims and conclusions are more than policy u2014 business models depend upon the lucid appraisal of clinical problems, evaluating inadequacies in current standards of care, a clear understanding of disease pathways, and designing superior interventions.u00a0 At each step along this value chain, founders stand on the shoulders of the […]

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tips for founders trying to raise their first round of venture capital”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

If you’re an avid TechCrunch reader, someone who loves to absorb endless startup profiles and pore through fundraising stories, you might think raising venture capital is easy. In reality, itu2019s very, very difficult and not the best source of capital for most businesses.

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For startups hoping to scale far and wide as fast as possible, VC may be the right fit. To shed light on the process of raising equity capital from venture capital firms and provide some exclusive tips and tricks for Extra Crunch subscribers, we sat down with three experts on the subject. Below are the top pieces of advice from Charles Hudson, founder and managing partner of Precursor Ventures, Redpoint Ventures general partner Annie Kadavy, and DocSend founder Russ Heddleston. The following has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

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1. First, make sure your company is fit to raise venture capital.

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Charles Hudson: I think venture capital, it’s really a specialty type of capital. It’s really for companies that have the aspiration to grow really quickly, to build really large businesses u2026 If you’re not a company that needs to grow quickly, venture capital might not be the right source of capital for you. There has to be a really big prize at the end of the journey.

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2. Raise capital early if youu2019re stressing about small costs or fretting competition

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Russ Heddleston: If you’re thinking about whether or not to raise, there are a couple of reasons that I will often advise people to raise early. One is if they’re really stressing about buying a whiteboard for their office, or like some something of relatively small cost. If you think it could be a big company, and you’re stressing about small things, raise money and buy the whiteboard, hire the additional person and get back to what you should be doing, which is running your business and growing it quickly.

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The other thing is if you ask the question, ‘is there a competitor I don’t know about?’ If you heard tomorrow, that competitor just raised $2 million, or $5 million or $10 million, how nervous would that make you? For some businesses, you’re like, I don’t really care, itu2019s a services industry, it’s not a winner take all market. And other times, you’re like, oh, I’d be really nervous. So if either those apply, that’s a good reason to make a compelling case to someone like Charles.

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t

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nttt The number one thing you can do to get a VCu2019s attention is make [your pitch] really simple. tttttttPrecursor Ventures' Charles Hudsonnttttt

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3. Itu2019s OK to take a salary

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Annie Kadavy: Iu2019d be hard-pressed to think of an example where a founder is not paying themselves, the question, though, is how much? You’re paying yourself enough so that the basic costs of life and running your business are not giving you anxiety, because as an early stage investor one of our primary roles is to try and keep the baseline stress as low as it can be, because it’s really hard to go build a company.

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If a founder is coming in at the Series A and they say I’m going to go pay myself $300,000, we might be like, well, that doesn’t really feel right, shouldn’t you want to put some of that money into the company? The ranges I’ve seen are anything from $60,000 up to probably $120,000 at the Series A, or maybe $150,000. Then, as the company grows and as the balance sheet grows and it’s de-risked, your salary as an executive at the company will scale with that.

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“,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

Charles Hudson, Annie Kadavy and Russ Heddleston offer pro tips.

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Kate Clark is a reporter at TechCrunch covering startups and venture capital. She’s interested in diversity & inclusion, consumer technology, mobility and more.

nn

She previously covered the venture capital ecosystem for PitchBook News.

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A Seattle native, she is a graduate of the University of Washington, where she studied journalism and international studies.

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Reach Kate via e-mail at kate.clark@techcrunch.com or on Twitter @KateClarkTweets.

“,”cbAvatar”:”https://crunchbase-production-res.cloudinary.com/image/upload/prbqsd3b940garp9fcyu”,”twitter”:”kateclarktweets”,”_links”:{“self”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users/133574213″}],”collection”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users”}]}}],”author”:[{“id”:133574213,”name”:”Kate Clark”,”url”:””,”description”:””,”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/author/kate-clark/”,”slug”:”kate-clark”,”avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/b3c493a500cfa371f64f24efe2712a63?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/b3c493a500cfa371f64f24efe2712a63?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/b3c493a500cfa371f64f24efe2712a63?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”links”:{“twitter”:”https://twitter.com/kateclarktweets”,”linkedin”:”https://www.linkedin.com/in/katelynmayclark/”,”crunchbase”:”https://www.crunchbase.com/person/kate-clark”},”position”:”Writer”,”cbDescription”:”

Kate Clark is a reporter at TechCrunch covering startups and venture capital. She’s interested in diversity & inclusion, consumer technology, mobility and more.

nn

She previously covered the venture capital ecosystem for PitchBook News.

nn

A Seattle native, she is a graduate of the University of Washington, where she studied journalism and international studies.

nn

Reach Kate via e-mail at kate.clark@techcrunch.com or on Twitter @KateClarkTweets.

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SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – OCTOBER 03: (L-R) TechCrunch Reporter Kate Clark, DocSend Co-founder & CEO Russ Heddleston, Precursor Ventures Founder & Managing Partner Charles Hudson, and Redpoint Managing Director Annie Kadavy speak onstage during TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco 2019 at Moscone Convention Center on October 03, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Kimberly White/Getty Images for TechCrunch)

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guide to the pre-IPO secondary market”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

The increase in activity in the pre-IPO secondary market means that founders, early employees, and investors are receiving liquidity much sooner in a companyu2019s lifecycle than ever before. For most startups and privately-held companies, liquidity is often an issue for stockholders, as no market exists for selling shares and/or transfer restrictions can prevent their sale. Secondary stock transactions, however, are a way to work around this problem.

n

Here’s a quick look at how they work and what to keep in mind, especially if you’re going through the process for the first time. (If you’re not familiar, secondaries are transactions in which an existing stockholder sells their stock for cash to third parties or back to the company itself before the company undergoes an exit; traditionally, an exit refers to an M&A or an IPO.)

n

Offering secondary transactions to founders is a tool VCs have been using to win deals. For example, if a VC promises that the founders will receive $1,000,000 in cash through a secondary sale from a $15,000,000 venture financing round, the founders will likely prefer that VCu2019s term sheet to a term sheet from a VC that does not offer that deal.

n

Why would a founder consider a secondary sale of their equity?

n

“,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

The increase in activity in the pre-IPO secondary market means that founders, early employees, and investors are receiving liquidity much sooner in a companyu2019s lifecycle than ever before…

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This is amazing! Thanks for sharing, Ryan!

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Image via @Atrium

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Lockheed Martin Ventures manages its early-stage $200M fund”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

In niche markets like aerospace, where the traditional VC model might not yield an abundance of available funding, corporate venture funds can offer entrepreneurs an interesting alternative.

n

Unlike traditional VCs, firms like Lockheed Martin Ventures are in constant contact with internal business units about challenges they need solved, or improvements they’re seeking that cannot be sourced internally or through existing vendors.u00a0

n

Lockheed Martin Ventures Executive Director and General Manager J. Christopher Moran explains that while in the past that has traditionally meant the companyu2019s in-house VC sought out later-stage investments in companies with more u201cmatureu201d technology, the fund recently shifted its focus to early-stage companies.

n

u201c[Lockheedu2019s venture arm] was actually established in 2007, as a fund called the u2018Emerging Technologies Funds,u201d Moran said in an interview. u201cAnd it was a vehicle for the business areas to look for and find small startups […] They were using it to look for sort of leading edge, but more mature technology. We started realizing that what we wanted to do was focus more on commercial tech, with a dual-use capability for aerospace, then that made us think that we should probably be looking at much earlier stage companies.u201d

n

Aerospace has always spun out dual-use technologies like GPS and satellite imaging, but today’s startups are solving larger problems; autonomous technologies like machine learning, computer vision, neural networks and artificial intelligence have tremendous potential for application in Lockheedu2019s aerospace and defense businesses u2014 but most of the startups working on these challenges are geared towards automakers and mobility, since they offer a clearer and more immediate path to revenue.

n

Moran accordingly shifted the focus of the fund, aiming its investments at much earlier stage companies, and looking instead for leading edge or u201cvisionaryu201d startups. Once identified, they look to establish partnerships with areas of Lockheedu2019s business to help inform the startups’ work at an earlier stage in the process.

n

Lockheed Martin Ventures now has $200 million committed, and Moran says it has returned around $80 million on its first $100 million invested already in its first decade of operation. Itu2019s an u2018evergreenu2019 fund by design, meaning that returns generated by the fund go back into funding more startups through the venture wing exclusively.

n

“,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

In niche markets like aerospace, where the traditional VC model might not yield an abundance of available funding, corporate venture funds can offer entrepreneurs an interesting alternative. Unlike traditional VCs, firms like Lockheed Martin Ventures are in constant contact with internal business units about challenges they need solved, or improvements they’re seeking that cannot be […]

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venture capital firms need culture experts”},”content”:{“rendered”:”

When Susan Fowler’s 2017 blog post shined a light on Uber’s raucous culture, outlining rampant harassment and sexism, a debate erupted. What role do the deep-pocketed investors behind the company, those who allowed it to scale to monstrous proportions, have in developing and nurturing its culture? Entrepreneurs and venture capitalists themselves wondered aloud, how involved should a venture fund be in early-stage recruiting processes and ensuring a safe environment for employees? If a culture is bad, unsafe, damaging, is it the VC’s fault?

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Late-stage venture funds, for the most part, miss the opportunity to deeply impact their portfolio companies’ cultures. When they invest, typically large sums of capital in companies with hundreds of employees and multiple offices, the company’s culture is formed and, as Uber and others have proven, rebuilding culture a decade in is no easy challenge. Early-stage funds, however, the people that write the very first check in startups, have a front-row seat to decisions crucial to defining how a company operates and treats its employees in the long term. These people, if they care to, have the power to help determine key hires and establish company values, norms and behaviors from the get-go.

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This week, San Francisco-based early-stage fund True Ventures hired its first-ever vice president of culture, a move that suggests VCs are taking concrete steps toward further involving themselves in the company-building process from a D&I and hiring perspective. Madeline Kolbe Saltzman joins the firm, which raised $635 million across two new funds last year, from Handshake, where she was the VP of people and talent.

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“There’s a responsibility to guide the company and the founder to being the best they can be, and that involves paying attention to who you’re hiring and how people are being treated,” Saltzman tells TechCrunch. “If we can come in and establish inclusive norms, my hope is that our companies will scale inclusively as well.”

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Most venture capitalists are in regular communication with active investments. Early-stage investors, particularly, are very involved with building businesses, facilitating hires and scaling. But as they seek to decrease cash-burn or find product-market fit, VCs are not often very concerned with issues of diversity and inclusion, something that’s became increasingly important as companies are finally being held accountable for the diversity of their workforces.

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“,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

True Ventures VP of culture Madeline Kolbe Saltzman on how to “scale inclusively.”

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Kate Clark is a reporter at TechCrunch covering startups and venture capital. She’s interested in diversity & inclusion, consumer technology, mobility and more.

nn

She previously covered the venture capital ecosystem for PitchBook News.

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A Seattle native, she is a graduate of the University of Washington, where she studied journalism and international studies.

nn

Reach Kate via e-mail at kate.clark@techcrunch.com or on Twitter @KateClarkTweets.

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Kate Clark is a reporter at TechCrunch covering startups and venture capital. She’s interested in diversity & inclusion, consumer technology, mobility and more.

nn

She previously covered the venture capital ecosystem for PitchBook News.

nn

A Seattle native, she is a graduate of the University of Washington, where she studied journalism and international studies.

nn

Reach Kate via e-mail at kate.clark@techcrunch.com or on Twitter @KateClarkTweets.

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Xage is working with utilities, energy companies and manufacturers to secure their massive systems, and today it announced some significant updates to deal with the scale and complexity of these customers’ requirements, including a new hierarchical blockchain.

n

Xage enables customers to set security policy, then enforce that policy on the blockchain. Company CEO Duncan Greatwood says as customers deploy his company’s solutions more widely, it has created a set of problems around scaling that they had to address inside the product, including the use of blockchain.

n

As you have multiple sites involved in a system, there needed to be a way for these individual entities to operate, whether they are connected to the main system or not. The answer was to provide each site with its own local blockchain, then have a global blockchain that acts as the ultimate enforcer of the rules once the systems reconnected.

n

“What we’ve done is by creating independent blockchains for each location, you can continue to write even if you are separated or the latency is too high for a global write. But when the reconnect happens with the global system, we replay the writes into the global blockchain,” Greatwood explained.

n

While classical blockchain doesn’t allow these kinds of separations, Xage felt it was necessary to deal with its particular kind of use case. When there is a separation, a resynchronization happens where the global blockchain checks the local chains for any kinds of changes, and if they are not consistent with the global rules, it will overwrite those entries.

n

Greatwood says these changes can be malicious if someone managed to take over a node or they could be non-malicious, such as a password change that wasn’t communicated to the global chain until it reconnected. Whatever the reason, the global blockchain has this power to fix the record when it’s required.

n

Another issue that has come up for Xage customers is the idea that majority rules on a blockchain, but that’s not always a good idea when you have multiple entities working together. As Greatwood explains, if one entity has 600 nodes and the other has 400, the larger entity can always enforce its rules on the smaller one. To fix that, they have created what they are calling a supermajority.

n

“The supermajority allows us to impose impose rules such as, after you have the majority of 600 nodes, you also have to have the majority of the 400 nodes. Obviously, that will give you an overall majority. But the important point is that the company with 400 nodes is protected now because the write to the ledger account can’t happen unless a majority of the 400 node customers also agrees and participates in the write,” Greatwood explained.

n

Finally, the company also announced scaling improvements, which reduce computing requirements to run Xage by 10x, according to the company.

n

n”,”protected”:false},”excerpt”:{“rendered”:”

Xage is working with utilities, energy companies and manufacturers to secure their massive systems, and today it announced some significant updates to deal with the scale and complexity of these customers’ requirements, including a new hierarchical blockchain. Xage enables customers to set security policy, then enforce that policy on the blockchain. Company CEO Duncan Greatwood […]

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Ron Miller has been writing about the enterprise at TechCrunch since 2014.

nn

Previously, he was a long-time Contributing Editor at EContent Magazine. Past regular gigs included CITEworld, DaniWeb, TechTarget, Internet Evolution and FierceContentManagement.

nn

Disclosures:

nn

Ron is currently corporate blogger for Intronis where he writes once weekly on IT issues. He has contributed to various corporate blogs in the past including Ness, Novell and the IBM Mid-market Blogger Program.

“,”cbAvatar”:”https://crunchbase-production-res.cloudinary.com/image/upload/diuuw7dfbczpdwmcpldm”,”twitter”:”ron_miller”}],”author”:[{“id”:521068,”name”:”Ron Miller”,”url”:””,”description”:””,”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/author/ron-miller/”,”slug”:”ron-miller”,”avatar_urls”:{“24″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/0b82cfe9f0e15c08c5816481c9f383d9?s=24&d=identicon&r=g”,”48″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/0b82cfe9f0e15c08c5816481c9f383d9?s=48&d=identicon&r=g”,”96″:”https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/0b82cfe9f0e15c08c5816481c9f383d9?s=96&d=identicon&r=g”},”links”:{“homepage”:”https://techcrunch.com/author/ron-miller/”,”twitter”:”https://twitter.com/ron_miller”,”linkedin”:”http://www.linkedin.com/in/ronsmiller”,”crunchbase”:”https://www.crunchbase.com/person/ron-miller”},”position”:”Enterprise Reporter”,”cbDescription”:”

Ron Miller has been writing about the enterprise at TechCrunch since 2014.

nn

Previously, he was a long-time Contributing Editor at EContent Magazine. Past regular gigs included CITEworld, DaniWeb, TechTarget, Internet Evolution and FierceContentManagement.

nn

Disclosures:

nn

Ron is currently corporate blogger for Intronis where he writes once weekly on IT issues. He has contributed to various corporate blogs in the past including Ness, Novell and the IBM Mid-market Blogger Program.

“,”cbAvatar”:”https://crunchbase-production-res.cloudinary.com/image/upload/diuuw7dfbczpdwmcpldm”,”twitter”:”ron_miller”,”_links”:{“self”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users/521068″}],”collection”:[{“href”:”https://techcrunch.com/wp-json/tc/v1/users”}]}}],”wp:featuredmedia”:[{“id”:1895018,”date”:”2019-10-10T07:11:19″,”slug”:”computer-nodes-1″,”type”:”attachment”,”link”:”https://techcrunch.com/2019/10/10/xage-now-supports-hierarchical-blockchains-for-complex-implementations/computer-nodes-1/”,”title”:{“rendered”:”Computer nodes 1″},”author”:521068,”license”:{“source_key”:”getty images”,”person”:”Jonathan Kitchen”},”authors”:[521068],”caption”:{“rendered”:”

A section of computing nodes on a circuit board shows computing power adn intelligence

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