Week in Review: February 25, 2013

The Silicon Bayou has been buzzing with tech and entrepreneurial news. Here are the most popular stories published on Silicon Bayou News in the past seven days:


It’s a Good Day to Become an Entrepreneur in New Orleans

The city is in the middle of an entrepreneurial renaissance that will reward the most driven entrepreneurs among us, which will, in turn, positively impact the city in ways that we cannot yet imagine. The more we, as a community, inspire talented people to push themselves, the more all of us will prosper.

Nawlins Cab’s Digital Dispatch System Takes Over City Streets for the Better

Nawlins Cab is the most recent addition to the city streets, opening in early 2013 as the first premium taxi service in New Orleans. The company culture and the emerging technological advancements in place in all the cabs are making bookings easier and keeping drivers safer. Founded by Sheree Kerner, Nawlins Cab has quite the story behind it. Read about one of the oldest taxi families in the city here.

Applications for Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans Class of 2013 Now Open

The Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans have opened applications for the Class of 2013. The initiative was created to engage young leaders in New Orleans in philanthropy. The 2013 Class will participate in a high-engagement, six-month program where they will be able to participate in sessions, get hands-on experience, and join a team with members who have the same mission as you do.

Idea Village Receives $100,000 Blackstone Grant for Fostering Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Along with eight other recipients, the Idea Village was awarded the Blackstone Grant on February 11th from the Blackstone Charitable Foundation. The Foundation targets organizations that focus on fostering entrepreneurship and innovation, which is exactly what the Idea Village does. They were awarded $100,000 as part of the total $1M awarded.

LSU Health Sciences Center Discovers Breakthrough Therapy to Cure Deafness

In 1998, Professor of Genetics Bronya Keats, PhD, made headlines when she found a gene defect that caused Usher Syndrome. At the time, she expected it would take another ten or so years for a therapy to be produced that would fix the deafness. Jennifer Lentz, PhD, Assistant Professor of Otorhinolaryngology & Biocommunications and a scientist who worked in Dr. Keats’ lab years prior, found a breakthrough therapy to treat deafness through a mouse study. The therapy allows the gene to do what it is supposed to do without the malfunction.

Louisiana’s Online Lagniappe Strikes it Rich!

Last week, Louisiana’s Online Lagniappe struck it rich with organizations where a little luck could go a long way, including Coushatta Casino ResortLouisiana Lottery Corporation, and Townsend. The extra shout-out went to someone being awesome with social media: Lance Thomas (@slangmagic on Twitter.) After costing Hornet’s fans their free McDonald’s fries by missing a free throw, he decided to make amends and tweeted an apology of sorts (see below,) promising free fries to those who came out with him the next day.

Google’s ‘Get Your Business Online’ Video Features Sen. Landrieu, Helps Small Business Owners

Google’s ‘Get Your Business Online’ (GYBO) initiative gives small businesses throughout the country the tools to get online, including an easy-to-build website with a customized domain name and business listings on Google. GYBO helped one jewelry business owner, Lauri Wallace, develop an online presence after an event held last August in Lafayette. The event was produced by Senator Mary Landrieu, in partnership with Google, who was recently featured in the GYBO promotion video (see here).

‘Level Up, Lafayette!’ is a Mayors Challenge National Finalist

Lafayette, LA has been named one of the 20 finalists for this year’s Bloomberg Philanthropies Mayors Challenge. “The challenge is all about identifying a need, solving a problem, and sharing local knowledge so that other cities and citizens can benefit from the insight and actions of their peers.” Lafayette could win up to $5M to fund their innovative solution to fixing problems in the city.