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Descartes Labs raises $5M to make agricultural predictions with deep learning

Descartes Labs, a startup with image recognition technology that can help companies answer questions related to agriculture, is announcing today a $5 million round of funding. The startup can work with satellite images to predict what will happen next. To do that, Descartes Labs depends on a type of artificial intelligence called deep learning. The […]

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air pollutionair qualityAtmotubeBusinessEducationenvironmenthealth wearablesIgor MikhenkoindiegogoMobileNotAnotherOneVera Kzyr

Atmotube tells you if the air you’re breathing is toxic

Like you, I assume that the environment I am sitting in right now is pretty safe. I mean, I don’t see anything dangerous, feel uncomfortable, or smell anything that I should be worried about. Yet I may be filling my lungs with harmful elements that my cognitive sensory abilities are incapable of noticing. To detect […]

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How Facebook’s FbStart program helped MomentCam pass 300M downloads

In 2014, Facebook launched an initiative aimed at giving assistance to local developers to help them produce applications that would have a beneficial impact on their community and region. Since that time, the company has provided $250 million in benefits. But what makes FbStart so effective? To answer that question, look to one of its […]

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Lyft says it’s on track to hit $1 billion in annual revenue

SAN FRANCISCO (By Heather Somerville, Reuters) – Ride-hailing app Lyft, Uber Technologies Inc’s [UBER.UL] biggest competition in the United States, expects to reach $1 billion in annualized revenue by this time next year, the company’s co-founder told Reuters. Hitting a $1 billion run rate over the next year would suggest privately owned Lyft has grown […]

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BusinessBusiness and finance

Marriott’s deal to buy Starwood makes it the world's biggest hotelier

THE $12.2 billion deal in which Marriott, an American hotelier, will buy a rival, Starwood, follows months of rumours about the bid target, whose brands include Westin and Sheraton. In April Starwood’s slow growth, at a time when other chains are doing well, prompted it to start exploring “strategic and financial alternatives”. Marriott’s acquisition, announced on November 16th, will make it the world’s biggest hotelier: it will manage more than one million rooms, about 50% more than its closest rival, Hilton.

The deal comes at a heady time for hotels. Eight years ago Blackstone, a private-equity firm, bought Hilton for $26 billion. The company’s value plunged during the recession, but the hotel industry’s recovery has since made the deal one of private equity’s most profitable on record. In America revenue per available room (RevPAR, revenue divided by rooms available in a given period), has risen for the past five years, according to STR, a data firm. PwC, a consultant, expects occupancy rates this year to reach their highest level since 1981. The question is not whether a slowdown will occur—it will—but for how long hotel…Continue reading

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Mixpanel launches Predict to show what users will do next in mobile apps

Mobile analytics software startup Mixpanel is announcing today the launch of a new component called Predict, which will give companies the ability to make guesses about what users will do within mobile apps. Rather than put Mixpanel into the predictive analytics industry, where companies IBM and SAS do business, Predict will allow the startup to […]

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analysisBig DataBusinessCloudCommercecustomer serviceEnterpriseEntrepreneurEPlive chatLiveChatMarketingmarketing technologymartechReportSmall BizSocialstudysupportweb chat

Web hosting firms win customers’ hearts with live chat, but automotive is failing

EXCLUSIVE: Web chat service LiveChat has launched its annual Customer Service Efficiency Report, and the findings show a big change in some industries’ grasp of web-based customer service. While the company has an obvious interest in the research, the data can’t be ignored. It monitored 8,400 companies across 22 industries, taking in data from 118 countries. In […]

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