Seagull poop and other highlights from Avatar Kinect

The launch of Microsoft’s Avatar Kinect yesterday has provided a new form of creative expression to Xbox 360 users — letting them put their Xbox Live avatars in virtual settings and interact with other users (and their avatars) by talking and gesturing in front of the Kinect sensor. So how are they using it so… Read More


Comcast inks deal with NW companies to stream video to the iPad and iPhone

With Hulu reportedly for sale and Netflix taking heat over its price hike, Comcast is making a bigger push to deliver online video content to mobile devices. The cable giant today announced that it plans to begin using video processing technology from Portland-based Elemental Technologies and video management technology from Seattle-based thePlatform — a Comcast subsidiary… Read More


Microsoft drops out of the Hulu bidding, opening door for Amazon?

Microsoft has reportedly dropped out of the bidding for Hulu, the popular online video service owned by Fox, Disney, NBC and others, according to Bloomberg News. Earlier this month, when the reports first surfaced, GeekWire’s Todd Bishop said he’d be surprised if Microsoft went after Hulu since historically it has pursued technology-oriented companies over pure content… Read More

The ISB's Sissy Walsh Bouchard

Tech Moves: ISB attracts an all-star fundraiser; Blue Nile taps a Starbucks vet; and more

We’ve been tracking a number of key departures, appointments and new hires in the Pacific Northwest tech industry in recent days. Here are a few notable tech moves: Sissy Walsh Bouchard, a former fundraiser at the University of Washington, has been named vice president of development at the Institute for Systems Biology. In that role, the graduate… Read More


Poll: Time to dump Netflix?

Netflix caused an uproar among its users today with a change in its subscription plans that boils down to a not-insignificant price hike for customers who want unlimited online streaming and unlimited DVDs by mail. Netflix will charge separately for DVDs and streaming. For example, someone currently paying $10 a month for streaming and one DVD… Read More


Bellevue high school grads raise $25 million for online slideshow maker Animoto

Animoto may be based in New York. But the startup, which is announcing $25 million in venture capital today, certainly has roots in the Pacific Northwest. The company’s four co-founders, Brad Jefferson, Jason Hsiao, Stevie Clifton and Tom Clifton, graduated from Bellevue High School in the 1990s. And its early investors include Madrona Venture Group and… Read More


Microsoft’s Windows 8 demo video is a low-budget hit

Microsoft’s video this week unveiling the new Windows 8 interface was remarkable not just for the content but for the production values. Which is to say, there really weren’t many. Jensen Harris, director of program management for the Windows User Experience team, might as well have been some kid on YouTube as he stood in… Read More


A YouTube star in the making?

Ethan Newberry wants to be a YouTube star. And the Seattleite is moving closer to that goal having been selected to participate in NextUp, a new program in which YouTube is trying to assist 45 rising media stars “who’ve demonstrated passion, talent and huge potential in video making across a range of genres.” The program… Read More


Meet Marcy: An original Web comedy from Lockerz

Lockerz just scored $30 million in venture capital financing from the likes of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and former Microsoft CFO Greg Maffei. And how is the Seattle social networking upstart — geared toward teens and twenty somethings– using some of that cash? Well, meet Marcy. That’s the title character of a new original comedy… Read More


Confirmed: Qik will become part of Microsoft, too

Hey, for $8.5 billion, you’d expect a little extra as part of a deal, and it turns out that Microsoft’s Skype acquisition will include a bonus in the form of Qik, the streaming mobile video company acquired by Skype for $121 million this year. Microsoft today confirmed that Qik will come along with the Skype… Read More

ThePlatform has a new home

ThePlatform sets sail for new digs in downtown Seattle

ThePlatform, an online video company owned by Comcast, is moving from its longtime digs in the old Airborne Express building on Western Avenue to a larger office space in downtown Seattle. The company — which is relocating to 1000 Second Avenue — plans to complete the move in May. “We just outgrew the space,” said… Read More


Report: Is Comcast looking to sell thePlatform?

[See update below] The Platform, an online video management company which has been owned by Comcast for the past five years, may be on the auction block again. That’s the word from Business of Video’s Dan Rayburn, who reports that Comcast has been shopping the company around for the past few months. The most interested… Read More


Nuclear fallout? Skip the tin foil, grab a cookie sheet

Seattle startup guru Mike Koss of was watching news coverage of the crisis in Japan when he noticed people holding large sheets of cardboard over their heads, covered in tin foil, presumably hoping to protect themselves from radioactive fallout. Which raised an interesting question in his mind: Would that work? As he explains in… Read More

Seattle All Stairs photo

Cool Web Site of the Week: Seattle All Stairs

Some people spend their time knitting, reading books or playing sports. Susan Ott Ralph and David Ralph like staircases. Public staircases, that is. The couple have spent the better part of a year compiling a comprehensive online list of Seattle’s public staircases at Seattle All Stairs, everything from big climbs in Queen Anne to small… Read More


Advice to entrepreneurs: ‘Never stop selling your company’

Representatives from nearly all of the major Seattle angel investment groups recently gathered to discuss their craft at a meeting of the MIT Enterprise Forum Northwest. There were some words of wisdom shared with the entrepreneurs in the crowd, and I was especially struck by angel investor Byron McCann’s advice. “The entrepreneur has to keep… Read More