Tech Showcase: PAR, Inc., Leader in Psychological Assessment

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:56 AM on January 6, 2014:

PAR, Inc. is an international publisher of psychological assessment materials focused on "Creating Connections, Changing Lives." Since 1978, PAR, Inc. - Psychological Assessment Resources, Inc. - has provided high quality psychological assessment resources, software, and related materials to professionals worldwide in many fields, including education, forensics, psychology, counseling, pharmaceutical product development, and career counseling. PAR's mission includes providing an exceptional experience for employees and to give to the community through donations of time and funds.

PariConnect - the future of psych assessment is here

PAR is known for:

  1. Recognition as one of the 10 Best Companies for Employee Financial Security in the U.S. by the Principal Financial Group. PAR has over 60 employees.
  2. A team of Assessment Consultants available to large institutions and school districts to help tailor assessment programs to meet their specific needs.
  3. Donations of a portion of profits to those in need, and their encouragement of staff to volunteer time and resources to help others as well.
  4. Receiving the Spirit of Philanthropy award in 2009 for "living the spirit of giving" from the Suncoast Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
  5. Receiving the United Way's Spirit Award in multiple years.
  6. Providing products in many languages to serve a global customer base. Some products are now available in European Spanish, Spanish, Chinese, German, Hindi, Russian, Italian, Japanese, Croatian, Romanian, Marathi, Kannada, Telegu, and Tamil.
  7. The online availability of select PAR assessment tools through PARiConnect, a secure, easy-to-use online testing platform. This particularly useful for remote testing of clients and patients.
  8. Self-Directed Search (SDS), an innovative career inventory used by over 30 million people worldwide.
  9. Publishing the Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (NAB), the comprehensive neuropsychological assessment taking fewer than 4 hours to complete. Funding for the 7-year long development of this assessment was provided in part by the grants from the National Institute of Mental Health.
  10. Top assessment products including the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI), the Wide Range Achievement Test 4 (WRAT 4), SDS, NAB, and the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF).

We are very grateful to PAR, Inc. co-founders Bob Smith and Cathy Smith for contributing to the crowdfunding campaign for Cognichoice(R) which provided seed funding for the release of New2Recovery.

For more information, please contact PAR, Inc.

Tech Showcase: 10 Facts about Clever Commute

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 8:45 AM on October 10, 2012:

From Clever Commute:

Clever Commute is a mobile app that provides a suite of services for commuters who use public transportation for the trip in and out of major cities.

Also, Clever Commute...

  1. started as a handshake agreement between a few New Jersey Transit train commuters...and has grown into a nationwide network.
  2. offers users alerts via e-mail, text messaging,Twitter, and a mobile website.
  3. works on a “freemium” model and is currently in beta.
  4. provides B2B services for news, traffic and transit organizations.
  5. filters and curates user-generated content to solve a very relevant problem with a patent pending technology.
  6. ranks messages for commuters so they can sure that both good and bad "posters" get the necessary feedback.
  7. reaches an amazing demographic for advertisers.
  8. works on all technology platforms.
  9. is self-funded and has been bootstrapped to revenue, profits and growth.
  10. has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and on CNN, CBS and NBC news (see this link for a list of press coverage).

Clever Commute is developed by Clever Communicator, LLC, a New Jersey start-up.  It is a thriving and profitable alerting service used by over 20,000 commuters in the country's largest markets. Clever Commute was founded by CEO Joshua Crandall

Fusion Business Accelerator, a Fusion PR CompanyThis edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Fusion Business Accelerator (BA), a Fusion PR company.  Fusion BA provides business development services, executive recruiting and assistance in helping startups identify sources of strategic, tactical and investment capital.

Fusion Public Relations is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Tech Showcase: 10 Facts about Cafrino

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 8:00 AM on September 20, 2012:

From Cafrino:

Cafrino is a New York-based start-up that operates Cafrino.com, a legal poker website for the USA, where players compete for large cash prizes without paying any money to participate. Cafrino is built on Node.js, a highly scalable software system, and hosted through Amazon's cloud compute infrastructure to ensure seamless scalability and failure resilient operations.

Also, Cafrino...

1. has its name from a combination of "casino" and "free."

2. is legal because it is not a gambling website. Even though there are cash prizes, play is 100% free.

3. is endorsed by World Series of Poker Champion Michael Linn.

4. wants to “bring poker back” to the American people to levels of popularity online poker had at its peak in 2006.

5. has daily guaranteed cash tournaments and constant single-table and heads-up tournaments.

6. held a charity poker tournament in midtown NYC in April 2012; the winner was sent to (and won money in) the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas.

7. has created an exciting, patent-pending tournament style called SpreeRoll, where players choose how much money they want to compete for by advancing through a tournament at each level of competition.

8. offers heads-up and single table tournament series with top prizes of $12,834.57 and $14,878.71 respectively and has the eventual goal of giving out single-tournament prize pools of over $1,000,000.

9. had a Launch Tournament Tuesday, September 11, 2012 with hundreds of players that gave out a pize pool of $1,000 cash.

10. is a portfolio company of KAYWEB Angels.

Cafrino.com is a US-only, legal, real-money online-poker destination for the over 15 million players who, since the U.S. government shutdown of illegal poker sites in 2011, have lacked a secure way to play poker online.  Using a unique model of pooling advertising revenue from tournament sponsors, Cafrino is able to have cash prize pools in the thousands of dollars while being 100% free-to-play and never taking money from players in any form.  Cafrino is headed by COO Sean Stavropoulos and CEO Jonathan Aiwazian.

Fusion Business Accelerator, a Fusion PR CompanyThis edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Fusion Business Accelerator (BA), a Fusion PR company.  Fusion BA provides business development services, executive recruiting and assistance in helping startups identify sources of strategic, tactical and investment capital.

Fusion Public Relations is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Tech Showcase: SynaptiCAD: Software Tools for Electronic Circuit Design

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:45 AM on September 19, 2012:

From SynaptiCAD:

SynaptiCAD develops software tools to help electrical engineers design electronic circuits. Being engineers ourselves, we were frustrated by having to almost complete a design before being able to get useful results from the software. We decided that there must be a better approach for interacting with design tools and from this simple idea we created SynaptiCAD.

SynaptiCAD software for electronic circuit design
Click image for larger view.
The concept of "Tools for the thinking mind" permeates all of our tool interfaces. With SynaptiCAD's tools, engineers are able to begin analyzing and simulating design ideas right away without having to complete an entire circuit model or schematic. Our tools automatically handle many of the minor details involved in the design effort, leaving more time to focus on the bigger picture.

Electronic circuits are now designed much like software: electronic hardware is defined using hardware programming languages and simulated on computers before any hardware is actually built. Two hardware programming languages dominate the electronic circuit design field, Verilog and VHDL. Verilog was originally a proprietary language owned by one company. The U.S. government funded the creation of VHDL to promote an open standard for hardware development (especially for military hardware). Subsequently, Verilog was made an open standard so that it would stay competitive. Despite being developed in the U.S., VHDL is more popular in Europe and Verilog is more popular in the U.S.

SynaptiCAD has developed a low-cost Verilog simulator, VeriLogger Extreme.  But low cost is relative - VeriLogger sells for $4000 per user. We have just released our latest product, SimSwapper, that lets engineers swap between Verilog simulators from different EDA vendors.

Among our first products were  timing diagram editors developed to visualize electronic circuit timing.  These products are still best sellers for us today and we've added new features along the way.  In addition, we offer a line of test bench generators for VHDL and Verilog that take timing diagrams drawn with our timing diagram editors and automatically generate VHDL and Verilog code to hardware designs.

SynaptiCAD has a graphical debugger that supports all major Verilog and VHDL simulators called  BugHunter Pro, and offers full service VHDL to Verilog and Verilog to VHDL translation services along with automated V2V translation software.

SynaptiCAD licenses parts of its software to other electronic design automation companies so they don't need to "reinvent the wheel." These software components include graphical waveform viewers, simulation engines, and VHDL/Verilog language parsers. SynaptiCAD provides custom software solutions with a special emphasis on engineering-related applications. As we celebrate our 20th year in business, we look forward to continuing to offer software innovations to the electronic design industry.

. . . . .

SynaptiCAD creates software design tools that help engineers think critically and execute expertly on electronic circuit design. Founded in 1992 by electrical engineers Dan Notestein and Donna Mitchell, SynaptiCAD offers a complete line of design products and custom solutions for engineering-related applications. Read more about SynaptiCAD.

10 Facts About ABS Technology Architects

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 9:05 AM on August 1, 2012:

ABS Technology Architects is a technology solutions provider headquartered in Virginia Beach, Virginia with offices in Richmond, Roanoke and Arlington, Virginia.

ABS also:

  1. ABS Technology Architectsis celebrating its 40th year in business. In 1972, John Dorroh founded American Business Systems, providing electronic calculators, typewriters and word processing solutions.
  2. was bought in 1999 by Dorroh’s sons Walker and Hunter and reincorporated as ABS Technology Architects.
  3. is a Cisco Gold Certified Partner, having also earned Cisco’s Customer Satisfaction Excellence from 2002 to 2012. ABS was the first southern Virginia partner to receive Cisco’s Master Unified Communications specialization and Cisco’s IP Telephony certification and remains the longest continuously certified Cisco voice partner in Virginia.
  4. continues to grow. Since 2003, ABS has grown year over year twenty percent, becoming a 40 million dollar company.
  5. works with the latest technologies. ABS has relationships with multiple partners such as Barracuda Networks, Ingram Micro, Panduit, and more.
  6. has a Project Management team to make sure your project finishes on time and on budget, and a Structured Cabling division to ensure that we can handle every aspect of the solution.
  7. is a leader amongst technology integrators. ABS is recognized by UBM Channel as a part of CRN’s 2012 Solution Provider 500 list, which ranks the top technology integrators in North America.
  8. works hard and plays hard. The foundation was set many years ago when Walker and Hunter started working for their father performing tasks such as painting walls and pulling weeds. No task is too small.
  9. retains its  employees. The young accountant who once paid Walker and Hunter for chores at ABS just celebrated her 30th year with ABS.
  10. Cares about our clients, our people and our communities. ABS  supports local charities and hosting events to bring the current trends in technology to our clients.

Since its inception in 1972, ABS Technology Artichects has developed a reputation for putting the customer first and delivering innovative technology solutions that meet business and organizational needs. As an IT consulting firm, ABS provides network security, wireless networking, IP unified communications, virtualization, structured cabling, IT outsourcing and data center solutions.

Tech Showcase: 10 Facts About Thankster

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:15 AM on June 19, 2012:

From Thankster:

Thankster is a New York-based start-up that operates thankster.com, created to fulfill a very simple mission - to make it easier to write and send thank yous and other (generally handwritten) notes, such as holiday cards. 

Also, Thankster...

  1. is a website that makes it easy to order and send thank you and greeting cards.
  2. lets users personalize notes with authentic-looking handwriting.
  3. turns handwriting into a font for use with Thankster or other applications through sister site HandFont.
  4. lets users input handwriting via paper form or iPhone and iPad apps.
  5. offer subscriptions which makes it easy for consumers and businesses to stay in touch and strengthen relationships with friends, families and customers.
  6. combines etiquette and a personal touch with the latest in tech. For example, users can add QR codes to their cards that link to photos, videos, or other content.
  7. lets users easily add gifts to their cards.
  8. was released in 2010 and is growing rapidly.
  9. was founded by serial entrepreneur Paul Geller, who launched Delivery.com and other successful ventures.
  10. was listed as the #1 killer tool to boost sales in 2012 by Marketing Matters.
  11. Headquartered in New York City, Thankster combines the electronic world with an offline, personal touch. With Thankster, consumers or businesses can quickly create personalized, printed thank-you notes with authentic-looking handwriting.  Users can even use their own handwriting, which is a breakthrough for an online service. Through the website, they can send out thank-you notes, holiday greetings, holiday thank-you notes, and other personalized cards.  

    Fusion Business Accelerator, a Fusion PR CompanyThis edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Fusion Business Accelerator (BA), a Fusion PR company.  Fusion BA provides business development services, executive recruiting and assistance in helping startups identify sources of strategic, tactical and investment capital.

    Fusion Public Relations is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Tech Showcase: 10 Facts About Return on Change

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 9:00 AM on May 25, 2012:

Return on Change (RoC) connects innovative startups and investors who are looking to change tomorrow’s world today. Entrepreneurs with great ideas need capital funding to jumpstart their businesses, and investors are looking to help fund the next big idea. RoC provides the online medium through which startup companies and entrepreneurs will be able to pool capital through crowdfunding.

Return on Change - Everyonne's investedRoC also:

  1. is a new crowdfunding platform that will provide a way for investors to connect with game-changing startups. 
  2. is among the first to take advantage of the JOBS Act, the new law that boosts entrepreneurship, innovation, employment and the economy by making it easier for companies to offer shares to the public, and for people to invest in startups.
  3. focuses on high impact startups (Clean Tech, Bio/Med Tech, Web Tech, Social Ventures).
  4. was founded with simplicity in mind: Startups. Crowdfunding. Simple.
  5. has a founder, CEO Sang Lee, who is both a board and founding member of the National Crowdfunding Association (NLCFA).
  6. has been featured in Beta Beat, Reuters, and Fox Business.
  7. was a sponsor of the TechCrunch NYC Meetup  and NY Tech Day.
  8. Promotes investor literacy through education and information resources.
  9. has  JUST launched a contest for eligible startups with a June 30, 2012 entry deadline.
  10. is one of "everyone" in their tagline:  "Everyone's invested!"

Fusion Business Accelerator, a Fusion PR CompanyThis edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Fusion Business Accelerator (BA), a Fusion PR company.  Fusion BA provides business development services, executive recruiting and assistance in helping startups identify sources of strategic, tactical and investment capital.

Tech Showcase: TORC's Autonomous Vehicle and the Blind Driver Challenge

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:28 AM on March 10, 2011:

We asked TORC Technologies to share with Handshake 2.0's audience more about the story we learned first from Montgomery County, VA Economic Development and TORC's Media Center. David Cutter kindly replied:

In early 2010 Dr. Dennis Hong, Director of Robotics and Mechanisms Lab (RoMeLa) at Virginia Tech, was tasked with upgrading his “phase 1” prototype dune-buggy and nonvisual interfaces for the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) Blind Driver Challenge, and putting blind drivers in a real, road-ready vehicle. Because of the way the nonvisual interfaces (DriveGrip and SpeedStrip) work, the equivalent of an autonomous vehicle was required.
 
To accomplish this in such an aggressive timeframe, and remain focused on improving the novel devices used to communicate with the blind driver, Dr. Hong made the decision to leverage TORC’s off-the-shelf mobile robotics platform – the ByWire XGV. This “modified Ford Escape” was then topped off with TORC’s PowerHub modules which are used to distribute power to all of the added sensors, computers, and the nonvisual devices added to the system. A custom version of TORC’s AutonoNav (autonomous navigation system) was used to process the environment and make driving decisions.
 
In a typical autonomous vehicle, these decisions would be fed back into the vehicle’s control systems to carry out the actual driving behaviors. Here is what makes this project so unique: Instead of driving the blind person around autonomously, the whole point of the Challenge was to let the blind person make active decisions and have full control over driving the vehicle. This is why communicating through the nonvisual interfaces was so critical for the project’s success.
 
This is a perfect example of why using TORC products makes sense – it allows the researchers to proceed full steam ahead on their technological innovations and not “reinvent the wheel” by building custom, one-off robotic systems which can eat up a majority of a project’s time and engineering resources. TORC is extremely proud to have its products and engineering support used in such a visionary project led by the Dr. Hong, NFB and Virginia Tech.

TORC Technologies was featured on the Today Show.

Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes This edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R), is a full service real estate agency specializing in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes.  You're invited to download the Coldwell Banker Townside App, check out the CBT blog, Keepin' It Real Estate, visit Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R) on Facebook, and see more of Coldwell Banker Townside on Handshake 2.0

Coldwell Banker Townside REALTORS is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Tech Showcase: The Cool Factor for a Materials Database

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 8:30 AM on October 13, 2010:

Handshake 2.0 asked Henry Bass, founder of Automation Creations:

What is MatWeb

We see this description from the MatWeb site: "MatWeb's searchable database of material properties includes data sheets of thermoplastic and thermoset polymers such as ABS, nylon, polycarbonate, polyester, polyethylene and polypropylene; metals such as aluminum, cobalt, copper, lead, magnesium, nickel, steel, superalloys, titanium and zinc alloys; ceramics; plus semiconductors, fibers, and other engineering materials."

Glad to hear that data sheets exist.  What are they for?  Why would someone need them?  Who uses them?  Is anyone local a user of MatWeb?
 
"Data sheets for over 79,000 metals, plastics, ceramics, and composites."
 
79,000 is an impressive number in any business realm, especially with a founding in 1997.  What can invite someone in Blacksburg, Virginia, home of Handshake 2.0, to care that MatWeb is here and was created by ACI?  What's its cool factor?

Henry Bass replied:

Funny you should ask! We're actually proud that non-engineers ask us about this, because we can highlight this to our engineering-related advertisers: we've got an exclusive audience of engineers. Non-engineers write us and say they don't get it...so that's one way we can assure that products and services will be seen by the right audience.
 
Our datasheets provide a reference of the material properties for 79,000+ metals, plastics, ceramics and composites.  This means that when an engineer wants to use 6061-T6 Aluminum in his or her next product design, MatWeb.com serves as a handy reference for that metal's density, strength, elasticity and other properties.
 
Furthermore, if the engineer asks the question, "What other materials could I use that have the strength of this, but would be lighter?", he or she can use MatWeb to quantitatively search and find that Nylon 66 with glass fiber reinforcement can provide about the same strength but is 40% lighter.  If the application doesn't require the product to be exposed to high temperatures, this might be a lighter, cheaper alternative.

MatWeb is a searchable database of material properties data sheets

We went live with MatWeb in 1997, boasting properties of almost 500 materials.  Every year, we add to or update about 12,000 data sheets through the diligent efforts of Virginia Tech engineering students and our expert staff.  The result is that MatWeb.com is cited as the reference source for material properties more often than any other reference, printed or online. 
 
Local users of MatWeb would include the audience of just about all engineers at Virginia Tech (electrical, civil, mechanical, chemical, materials science, aerospace, etc), and engineering-related product development companies such as Moog, Federal Mogul, Safety Performance Solutions and TORC.

The cool factor is that over 180,000 engineers worldwide have registered with us because we're the largest free material property database on the web. Right here in li'l ol' Blacksburg.

Thanks,
Henry

***

Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes This edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R), a full service real estate agency specializing in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes.  You're invited to download the Coldwell Banker Townside App, check out the CBT blog, Keepin' It Real Estate, visit Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R) on Facebook, and see more of Coldwell Banker Townside on Handshake 2.0

Automation Creations, Incorporated and Coldwell Banker Townside REALTORS are clients of Handshake Media, Incorporated, parent company of Handshake 2.0.

Fantasy Football - Tech Showcase

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 10:05 AM on August 30, 2010:

National Football League fantasy football players - an estimated 27 million of them - are counting down to September 9, 2010, the start of the NFL season.

Fantasy football is big business.  The Fantasy Sports Trade Association, cited in The Acorn, reports that fantasy sports have a $3 billion to $4 billion annual impact across the sports industry.

To its devoted players, fantasy football is about way more than fun or fancy.

According to Henry Bass, "Selecting a fantasy football team is a math, science and art all to itself."

That's why Bass and his colleagues developed fantasy football league draft software pcDrafter.

Added 8/29/12: PC Drafter 12.0 released in time for 2012 season

From the pcDrafter site:

pcDrafter is software that you install on your PC to take the guesswork out of your fantasy football draft. During a draft, it needs no Internet connection, but before the draft, with optional registration and Internet access, it can automatically download the latest player projections directly to its powerful optimization engine. pcDrafter does a zillion calculations and sees patterns not humanly possible to find in 2 seconds. Your savvy FF mind plus pcDrafter equals an unbeatable draft. pcDrafter features automatic player updates from 4for4.com.

The "zillion calculations" through pcDrafter's algorithm made possible by today's computing power lay the foundation for the software founders' claim:  "pcDrafter software gives you a highly effective platform to both prepare for your draft and to crush your competition during the drafting itself."

Greg Alan Pisch, writes about pcDrafter for 4for4.com, "I've poured over pcDrafter with the GOLD algorithm and am convinced it's the best PC drafting software available on the market today."

Fantasy football draft software pcDrafter

Added 9/27/10: pcDrafter was featured on the WDBJ7 news.

***

Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes This edition of the Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0 is sponsored by Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R), a full service real estate agency specializing in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Roanoke, and Salem, Virginia real estate and homes.  You're invited to check out the CBT blog, Keepin' It Real Estate, visit Coldwell Banker Townside, REALTORS (R) on Facebook, and see more of Coldwell Banker Townside on Handshake 2.0

Automation Creations, Incorporated, developers of pcDrafter, and Coldwell Banker Townside REALTORS are clients of Handshake Media, Incorporated, parent company of Handshake 2.0.