Sunday, July 31, 2011

Enhancing the Business Infrastructure in MA

As we face the economic challenge of our lifetime, we in Massachusetts take solace in the fact that our business ecosystem is one of the most innovative in the world. In fact, CNBC just ranked Massachusetts No. 6 on its 2011 roster of America’s Top States for Business. This is valuable recognition in the near term, but it does not guarantee success in the long term. While celebrating the many assets and successes of our region, we must work to better understand and invest in overcoming structural deficiencies that will otherwise weigh on our ability to succeed in the global economy for generations.

So what does success look like, and what must we do to move forward aggressively? The MassTLC set a challenge of creating 100,000 new tech jobs by 2020. The council articulated its challenge as a number of jobs, but our aspiration is arguably more about the kind of business environment that would result in the rise of new companies and, of course, the associated jobs. The council’s challenge requires the creation of hundreds of small, innovative companies, continued expansion of our mid-market companies, and the emergence of a number of new $1 billion companies over the coming decade. We should not assume that it can be done with our current business infrastructure. We must address the structural impediments and opportunities that are real but not insurmountable.

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This article was written by Steve Krom, the Vice President at AT&T

Thursday, July 28, 2011


FRAMINGHAM, MA - Robotics Trends today announced that the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council (Mass TLC) has partnered with RoboBusiness Leadership Summit, the 7th annual international business development event for the robotics and intelligent systems industries taking place November 2-3, 2011 in Boston, Mass.

This executive-level conference is designed for growth-oriented decision makers, executives, professionals and companies from across the robotics ecosystem who are serious about the commercial development and advancement of robotics. It will facilitate important discussions between both business and technology executives regarding growth strategies, investment opportunities and industry trends in major markets such as Consumer, Industrial, Education and Healthcare.

"We are delighted that the Mass Technology Leadership Council is supporting theRoboBusiness Leadership Summit as a technology parter," states Jim Wagner, General Manager of Events for Robotics Trends. "As a member-driven business association that addresses the critical leadership issues of innovative technology and technology-enabled companies, members of Mass TLC will certainly benefit from the networking and business information available at this executive level conference."

"MassTLC is excited about the return of RoboBusiness to Boston," said Tom Hopcroft, President & CEO of the Mass Technology Leadership Council. "It is a testament to the strength of the Robotics innovation cluster in New England that this program is happening here. We are happy to support Robotics Trends in their efforts to catalyze growth in the local robotics community."

Complete event information and registration are available at More news on this event can be found at

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Governor's Broadband Expansion Launches in Western Massachusetts

Governor Deval Patrick joined public officials and firefighters at the Sandisfield Fire Department to kick-off construction of the MassBroadband 123 fiber-optic network project, one of the nation's largest projects of its kind. The 1,300 mile Internet backbone network will expand broadband access to more than 120 communities in western and north central Massachusetts, attract private investment, drive public and private sector innovation, and be a catalyst for both short and long term economic development in the region.

MassTLC, which recently issued a job growth challenge for the tech sector, has supported the Governor's broadband initiative, since it not only creates immediate tech jobs but paves the way for future growth in the sector, as entrepreneurs in western Massachusetts gain access to high speed connections and can more easily bring their products to market.

Governor Patrick launched the western Massachusetts effort early in his first term and worked with the legislature to create the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) and to provide state capital funding for broadband-related infrastructure projects. These resources, combined with an effective partnership with the Obama Administration and the Massachusetts congressional delegation, helped the MBI secure multiple federal grants worth more than $80 million, including $45.4 million in stimulus funds awarded through the highly-competitive National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP).

The BTOP funds will be used to complete the MassBroadband 123 project which, over the next two years, will put hundreds of people to work building a fiber-optic network to serve 333,500 households and 44,000 businesses in an area with more than one million residents. The MBI, the Commonwealth's Information Technology Division, and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security are providing $26.2 million in matching funds for the project.

To expand high-speed Internet access in the region, the MBI will attach fiber-optic cable to 35,000 existing utility poles in the project's service area. The MBI is a division of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC), a public economic development agency chartered by the Commonwealth to spur innovation across the state.

View Governor Patrick's Broadband accomplishments.

VIDEO: Broadband is heded to the Berkshires - WSHM Channel 3

Friday, July 15, 2011

Hundreds Gather for 2011 Mass Technology Leadership Awards Finalist Announcement

Excitement was in the air last night as the Mass Technology Leadership Council announced finalists for the Council’s annual Awards program at a cocktail reception at Castile Ventures in Waltham. The event was attended by over 200 award nominees and other leaders from across the technology community.

Feverish networking and excitement filled the venue in anticipation for the announcement of the finalists. Thirty-three finalists were announced in individual and company categories. Fifteen finalists were named in the Product/Service of the Year Category and all will be featured on the Council website and have an opportunity to display, demo, and interact with attendees during the reception at the October 6th Awards Gala. The audience will then vote for the winner via their mobile devices during the event.

Finalists in Individual categories:

CEO of the Year - Privately Held
- Paul Brient, PatientKeeper
- Robert LeFort, Ember Corporation
- Mads Lillelund, Bluesocket, Inc.
- Chris Randles, SpaceClaim
- Debbie Theobald, Vecna Technologies

CEO of the Year - Publicly Traded
- Mark Aslett, Mercury Computer
- Andy Ory, Acme Packet
- Rick Reidy, Progress Software
- Alan Trefler, Pegasystems, Inc.

CIO of the Year
- Bob Barrett, A123 Systems
- Rick Broughton, Circor International
- James McCoy, Raytheon
- Bill Oates, City of Boston
- Bill Scudder, Sonus Networks

Emerging Executive of the Year
- Heidi Meisenkothen, Foresight Science & Technology
- Arun Nagarajan, Pyxis Mobile
- Tracy Rosenthal-Newsom, Harmonix Music Systems
- David Samuels, EnerNOC
- Al Tahn, Raytheon

Finalists in Company Categories:

Company of the Year - Privately Held
- Acquia
- CSN Stores
- Endeca
- Karmaloop
- Kiva Systems

Company of the Year - Publicly Traded
- Analog Devices
- Athena Health
- iRobot Corporation
- LogMeIn
- Skyworks

Deal of the Year
- ITA Software
- Netezza
- Phase Forward

Finalists who will demo and be voted upon by the audience at the October 6th Gala include:
Product of the Year

- AisleBuyer
- Apperian
- Currensee
- Digital Lumens
- Gazelle
- Gemvara
- GrabCAD
- iWalk
- KangoGift
- Myomo
- Peer Transfer
- SpaceClaim
- Strohl Medical
- TripAdvisor
- Vecna Technologies

The Council received well over 200 quality submissions during the open nomination process. A committee of Council Trustees and local thought leaders were involved with the selection process that narrowed the slate to those announced last night. The finalists will be further considered over the coming weeks by a committee of Council Trustees, local thought leaders, members of the press, investors and entrepreneurs. The winners announced on Thursday October 6th, at the Awards Gala at the Seaport Hotel in Boston. Details and advance registration available at:

Thank you to our Awards Program Sponsors: Greenberg Traurig, Microsoft, Oracle, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Silicon Valley Bank, CA Technologies, K Square Law and Sprint.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Microsoft's Qi Lu on the Future of the Web and Search

I met up with Microsoft Online Services Division President Dr. Qi Lu at eVoo in Cambridge for an informal dinner with several of the region's tech and investment leaders. Lu, who has had quite a remarkable journey from poverty to his current post, was recruited out of Yahoo by Steve Ballmer himself and charged with revitalizing Microsoft's online efforts in search and advertising (including Bing), Web software, services, and infrastructure. Prior to dinner, I dropped by an xconomy event at Microsoft NERD to hear Lu's presentation on the "Future of Web and Search" where he outlined his vision for where the web was going, how Microsoft is shaping its future, and how search will be completely transformed. This video covers the highlights of his talk and reactions from several of us in attendance.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Verizon 4G LTE Innovation Center Opens in Waltham

Almost a year to the day after I participated in groundbreaking ceremonies, Verizon's 20,000 square foot Innovation Center celebrated its grand opening with a showcase of innovative new solutions that are leveraging the Verizon 4G LTE technology.

The Verizon Innovation Center, located at the heart of the 128 high-tech corridor, was conceived as a place where companies large and small, entrepreneurs and others could come together to create the next generation of products that wirelessly connect people, places and things. It was evident from the showcase of companies already in the Center that Verizon and its partners are ready to roll up their sleeves and help propel the development of solutions that leverage the possibilities of 4G LTE.

"The Verizon Innovation Center is named after the core of who we are and what we stand for as a company: innovation. From the outset of this project, Verizon understood that the potential for innovation is bigger than Verizon alone," said Dan Mead, president and chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless.

The Innovation Center, which is designed to enable and showcase products, services and solutions that take advantage of the power, speed and reach of Verizon's 4G LTE wireless network, also encompasses laboratory space where engineers and developers from across the LTE ecosystem can create and build a new generation of connected products -- the kind of solutions that will help drive the growth of 4G LTE. More than 300 technology experts work at the Innovation Center, which is comprised of two buildings with more than 135,000 square feet of labs and office space in one building and 60,000 square feet with both showcase and office space in the building being opened today.

The ground-breaking for the new building and updates to the labs began in April 2010, and both projects were completed earlier this year. During construction, engineers began work in the Innovation Center Labs, in October 2009, where a replica of Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network was built to allow companies to develop and test products before the commercial network launched in December 2010. The replica 4G LTE network still exists, so developers can work on products and solutions in the lab environment, without impacting the commercial network. To date, more than 30 products have been developed and demonstrated in the new building as well as at industry trade shows, customer meetings and other venues.

Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson are founding participants in the Innovation Center, and Cisco and Samsung Mobile are premier participants. Engineers and other subject matter experts from these companies work side by side with Verizon engineers on projects generated by the Innovation Center labs, and each company has a permanent display highlighting 4G LTE technology and solutions for visitors to experience on the main floor of the building.

The Verizon Innovation Center was designed by the architecture firm Nelson, in collaboration with content provider Downstream. John Moriarty and Associates was the construction manager. The Verizon Innovation Center is expected to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Later this summer, Verizon expects to mark opening day of a sister Innovation Center on the West Coast. The Application Innovation Center, located in downtown San Francisco, will be a place for application developers to hash out ideas, polish applications, and test them on Verizon's 4G LTE network before bringing them to consumers or businesses.

For more information about the Verizon Innovation Center, including a list of participating companies, visit For more information about Verizon Wireless and its 4G LTE network, visit

This blog post was compiled based on remarks during the grand opening event and press release materials provided by Verizon Wireless.