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Business Techonomy Events

Detroit CIO Beth Niblock Interviews Jack Dorsey, Founder of Twitter and Square

At our Sept. 16 Techonomy Detroit conference, Beth Niblock, Detroit's first CIO, interviewed Jack Dorsey of Twitter and Square about how tech tools can help small merchants thrive in communities like Detroit.   More

Business Techonomy Events

Jack Dorsey Believes in Profit: For Merchants, Cities, and Square

Appearing on the Techonomy Detroit stage for the third year, Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey shared with Detroit CIO Beth Niblock his vision for how technology, and in particular the evolution of Square, is helping the commerce ecosystem and could help cities like Detroit. Dorsey and Niblock’s conversation followed a talk by author Andrew Keen in which the techno-polemicist cautioned the audience that tech companies operate strictly in the interest of their own profits, not to help society. Dorsey acknowledged Square’s profit motive, but pointed out that Square’s revenues depend on the success of its customers, so the company is highly invested in helping merchants succeed.   More

Business

Dorsey’s First Square Scribbles

In February 2009 Jack Dorsey had recently departed from Twitter, which he co-founded. When his longtime friend Jim McKelvey, a glass blower from St. Louis, lost out on the sale of a $2,000 piece because he was unable to accept credit cards, together they realized that their powerful smartphone devices should be able to process credit cards. So Jack sat down in his apartment with engineer Tristan O’Tierney and drew a series of rough sketches to show how a smartphone credit card app might work. Over that year, he continued elaborating his vision with more drawings.   More

Business

Dorsey Tells Entrepreneurs: Meet Customers Where They Are

An ice cream maker, a newspaper publisher, food trucks, pop-up shops, and numerous farmers’ market vendors are among the thousands of small businesses in Detroit using mobile apps invented by Jack Dorsey—namely Twitter and Square—to win customers, manage sales, and save time. In fact, Square has already helped to power $174 million in transactions for 5,500 Detroit businesses, the company claims. And at Techonomy Detroit this week Dorsey said entrepreneurs can expect more developments targeted to their businesses from him in the future.   More

Startup Culture

Putting Young Tech Minds and Friendly Faces on Debt Collection

After Detroit’s bankruptcy filing, there might not be a more apropos startup in Michigan than HealPay, an Ann Arbor company that offers a suite of cloud-based apps that enable online payment processing for various sectors. As HealPay co-founder Erick Bzovi says, debt collection “is a dirty world and the technology sucks.” The solutions he and cofounder Lance Carlson have developed streamline collections and provide electronic options that they say improve chances of collecting receivables.   More

Cities

Techonomy and Jack Dorsey Return to Detroit

Techonomy Media proudly announces it is bringing its one-day public conference, Techonomy Detroit, back for a second straight year. A diverse group of business, tech, government, and policy leaders will join in a spirited discussion of how technology is changing everything for the United States and its cities. National and local leaders will converge at Wayne State University on September 17, 2013 for a series of conversations and workshops to focus on the challenges and opportunities posed by headlong tech-driven change.   More

Business

Mining Big Data for Programming Talent

Finding and recruiting top programmers remains a huge challenge for fast-growth companies like Square, Google, Facebook, and Amazon. Will Big Data come to their rescue? They’re willing to give it a try. These companies—along with other big names like Twitter and Walmart—are all customers of Gild, a startup that leverages information technology to find hidden talent. Gild was developed to tap self-motivated achievers—a cohort rife with what co-founder Dr. Vivienne Ming calls "wasted talent"—who are largely unknown compared to the smaller pool of much-wooed Ivy League graduates.   More

Business

Square Launches Gift Card Service

Just in time for the holiday season, Square has launched a new service that lets anyone receive gift cards that can be used at one of the more than 200,000 businesses in Square’s mobile payments system.   More

Learning

$97,500 for an Online Degree? 2U Is Worth It, Say Students

Still think college degrees earned online are universally cheaper and less esteemed in the job market than traditional ones? In the case of graduate degrees offered by universities collaborating with a company called 2U, you’d be dead wrong.   More

Jobs Manufacturing Startup Culture

Turning Makers Into Middle Class Manufacturers

When you walk through TechShop just outside of Detroit, you see all sorts of contraptions and manufacturing projects—from bipedal robot legs hanging off a wooden stand to super-stretch cargo bikes that can carry big loads. Wind your way past the laser cutters, 3D printers, CNC machines—past the wood shop and the metal-bending station—and you will find a hallway hung with a half-dozen blackboards from floor to ceiling.   More

Business Partner Insights

Mobile Payments At A Crossroads: What’s Taking So Long?

The reason you may soon leave your wallet behind is because your smartphone will take its place and become the repository for credit cards, coupons, loyalty cards—and cash. However, before that can happen, a mobile payment standard has to be agreed upon by a range of interests, and then adopted.   More

Startup Culture

Young Detroit Entrepreneurs Need Mentorship, Says Jack Dorsey

Jack Dorsey, the founder of Twitter and Square, talked to MLive.com about the future of Detroit after speaking at last week’s Techonomy Detroit conference. Dorsey said that Detroit has reached a turning point, and mentorship is essential for the city’s burgeoning tech scene. While Detroit doesn’t have the experience level of Silicon Valley, local leaders like Dan Gilbert should spend time with young entrepreneurs because it “passes along the torch in ways nothing else can,” Dorsey said. “I think this conference is a start.… Actually seeing someone in the flesh, seeing them on stage and seeing them talk about what they did well, what they did poorly, and what they’re trying to do better at.” Although Detroit has seen an increase in homegrown tech startups, if the city is to truly overcome its formidable economic and structural challenges it needs strong entrepreneurial leadership. Perhaps it will come from someone like Dorsey—who doesn't hide his aspiration to one day transition from tech entrepreneur to mayor of New York City.   More

Business Cities

Why Techonomy Detroit?

People keep asking, "Why are you doing a Techonomy conference in Detroit?" We're known for our invite-only annual retreat in the desert near Tucson. So why, you may wonder, is our first one-day event in a gritty, depressed, financially-troubled city that seems well past its glory?   More

Business Techonomy Events

Jack Dorsey on Working for Two Companies Full-Time

In this video from the "21st Century Individuals vs. 20th Century Organizations" session at Techonomy 2011 in Tucson, Ariz., Techonomy's David Kirkpatrick asks Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter and co-founder and CEO of Square, how he juggles two full-time jobs. What it all comes down to, says Dorsey, is a lot of discipline and structure, not to mention a 16-hour workday.   More

Techonomy Events

Jack Dorsey Explains Square’s Pay-by-Voice Technology

In this video from the "21st Century Individuals vs. 20th Century Organizations" session at Techonomy 2011 in Tuscon, Ariz., Techonomy's David Kirkpatrick talks to Twitter co-founder and Square CEO Jack Dorsey about what we can expect from Square in the next five years. The mobile app, which allows anyone to accept credit card payments to their phones or devices, has the potential to revolutionize the way businesses interact with customers. The pay-by-voice system that Dorsey refers to in the video, now known as Pay With Square, is already being used at 75,000 shops around the country.   More

Business Techonomy Events

Jack Dorsey on How Square and Twitter are Similar

In this video from the "21st Century Individuals vs. 20th Century Organizations" session at Techonomy 2011 in Tucson, Ariz., Techonomy founder David Kirkpatrick asks Jack Dorsey about the similarities, and differences, between his two companies, Twitter and Square. Both are utilities, says Dorsey, and both are defined by the user.   More