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Imitation or flattery?
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Wichita State receives $2.3M software package for its Koch Global Trading Center
A Dallas-based company has donated a $2.3 million software package that Wichita State University will use in its new Koch Global Trading Center. WSU says students will use the software to better understand the complexities of commodities trading and to track movement from production to consumption. Allegro Development, an enterprise that helps companies trade and track commodities, is the latest to help WSU in its effort to create a way for students to learn about financial and commodities trading. Koch…
ABI expansion includes commitment to WSU's Innovation Campus
The announcement late Tuesday that the ABI Group of Companies is expanding its manufacturing operations to the Newton City/County Airport wasn’t the company's only expansion news of the day. It was also announced that ABI will become part of the Innovation Campus at Wichita State University. ABI, which is building a 20,000-square-foot manufacturing plant and hangar in Newton, will use the facility to produce a next-generation aerospace coating associated with chemical milling. In addition, the…
ICT Unconference creating connections, sparking ideas in Wichita on Tuesday
More than 200 business executives, new and aspiring entrepreneurs, civic leaders and others are gathered at the Wichita Marriott on Tuesday for an event that’s not quite a conference — and one that organizers say could spark new businesses, jobs and community groups in Wichita. As Herb Sih, co-founder of Kansas City’s Think Big Partners, said, it’s “the good part of any conference.” ICT Unconference has all the chance collisions and conversations without the rigid panel discussions that…
Director of WSU’s new networking center sees Wichita as a tech destination
Companies will be drawn to Wichita, says Ken Russell, as Wichita State University continues to build its focus on innovation and technology transfer. Russell will play a role in WSU’s transformation. He’s the incoming director of  the university’s planned new networking, data storage and software research center. The center is an evolution of WSU’s existing Advanced Networking Research Institute, which has worked with private companies including Cisco Systems, NetApp, Palo Alto Networks,…
Startup Weekend returns to Wichita next month
Startup Weekend, the build-a-business-in-54-hours event, is returning to Wichita May 30 through June 1. This is the third time Wichita has hosted a Startup Weekend. At the two events held last year, developers, designers, business experts and others gathered to create business concepts ranging from a service that delivers the groceries needed for new recipes to a platform that helps drivers arrange to have their oil changed while they’re at work. While most of the businesses hatched at past Startup…
K-TAG/Pike Pass interoperability part of larger push toward electronic tolling
By the end of the year, drivers who have the Kansas Turnpike Authority’s K-TAG will be able to use it on the Oklahoma Turnpike toll road system and vice versa. But Kansas Secretary of Transportation Mike King says the state’s plans extend beyond interoperability with a single state. King says the Kansas/Oklahoma agreement is part of a nationwide push by turnpike systems toward an interoperable electronic tolling system. For now, the move extends several benefits K-TAG users have in Kansas to…
Wichita native’s Cinema & Spice web show up for a Webby
It can be hard for someone aspiring to a film career to find a steady stream of fulfilling projects to work on, says Julianna Strickland, who grew up in Wichita and now lives in Los Angeles. So she and a few friends decided to create their own. It was just a fun side project at first — there was no money — but now, Cinema & Spice is syndicated by Yahoo and  up for a Webby Award against the likes of shows by chef Mario Batali and the magazine GQ.  Cinema & Spice is a cooking show inspired…
Wichita State hires director for new networking, data storage and software center
Wichita State University has hired a director from Cisco Systems to lead the university’s effort to establish a new networking, data storage and software research center. Ken Russell, director of intellectual capital and an organizational strategist at Cisco Systems, will begin work in May as the executive director of the center. According to a news release from WSU, Russell will be responsible for transforming the university’s current Advanced Networking Research Institute into a hub that…
Fewer Kansans started businesses in 2013
Entrepreneurial activity in Kansas has been slowing down over the past two years, according to a new report from the Kauffman Foundation that analyzes Census data. The foundation’s Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity was at 0.18 for Kansas in 2013, which means that in each month of 2013, an average of 0.18 percent of Kansans started a new business. In other words, for every 100,000 people in the state, 180 were starting a new business each month. Kansas has a population of about 2.9 million,…
Report: Networking, revenue keys in raising startup funding on the Silicon Prairie
How do tech startups in the Great Plains states raise capital? Even as the startup culture in Wichita and other nearby cities grows more robust, it hasn’t always been easy to answer that question. National reports on venture capital and angel investors often gloss over the Plains states, and even reports with a regional breakdown tend to focus more on areas where investments are the biggest — usually, not in Kansas. It’s refreshing to see, then, a  first attempt by the blog Silicon Prairie…

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