|MATR Newsletter - Tue Dec 9, 2008|
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"It's all about the beaver!" - Karen Saint Entrepreneurs: Fur-lined dreams propel Red Lodge seamstress - The Montana Beaver Co. http://matr.net/articl ... .html
"The Montana Board of Research and Commercialization Technology is accepting proposals for funding. Proposals are due March 2, 2009." http://www.matr.net/ar ... .html
Three Cups of Tea - The Central Asia Institute
2009 Montana Legislature
- Making cents for children: Penny charity brings math, education, peace lessons full circle - The Central Asia Institute and Lewis and Clark Elementary School in Missoula, Montana
The Lewis and Clark Elementary School students of Kathy Dungan and Jane McAllister are learning math by learning about peace. And they are learning about peace by learning about education.
Come Home Montana
- Montana Governor's Budget: The Good and the Bad
A few weeks ago, Governor Schweitzer released his budget for the next biennium. Overall, I think the budget will be a good starting point. Here are a few of my thoughts on the budget:
- Montana School funding called bleak
“The money’s not rolling in like it was last session” before recession, said Steve Johnson, assistant superintendent for business. “It’s a bleak situation.”
- State energy leaders gather in Lewistown, Montana to discuss strategy for the next Legislature
“If there was a single theme of this meeting,” said Chalmers, “it is that we must guard against the tyranny of the minority.” The “tyranny of the minority” statement was introduced at the meeting by Mike Chapman, Lewistown. Chapman was referring to those who use the legal system to thwart energy developments such as the proposed Highwood coal-fired plant near Great Falls.
Come Home North Dakota
- Montana Career Opportunity - Sales and Customer Service Representative - Project WET
The mission of Project WET is to reach children, parents, educators, and communities of the world with water education. We invite you to join us in educating children about the most precious resource on the planet – water.
- Montana Career Opportunity - Website Designer/Developer - Montana Promotion Division/Travel Montana
Website Designer/Developer #05203 to work on travel websites, Montana Promotion Division/Travel Montana, Helena, Salary $37,027 - $46,284.
- Montana Career Opportunity - Bureau Chief - Montana Census and Economic Information Center
Bureau Chief #05163 Census and Economic Information Center, Department of Commerce, Helena, Salary $49,944 - $68,000.
- Montana Career Opportunity - Product Marketing Manager, RightNow Technologies, Inc.
Duties include formulation of product positioning, communication & messaging strategies; analysis of existing and potential market growth opportunities; development of communications for sales training, prospect & customer events, user conferences & industry forums; management of projects to maximize effectiveness of marketing teams.
Come Home Wyoming
- A Placid North Dakota Asks, What Recession?
While dozens of states, including neighboring ones, have desperately begun raising fees, firing workers, shuttering tourist attractions and even abolishing holiday displays to overcome gaping deficits, lawmakers this week in Bismarck, the capital, were contemplating what to do with a $1.2 billion budget surplus.
- Need a job? 'Ya oughta go ta North Dakota'
As the rest of the nation sinks into a 12th grim month of recession, North Dakota, at least up until now, has been quietly reveling in a picture so different that it might well be on another planet.
Developing Tech Jobs in Rural Communities
- Wyoming officials seek ways to make city more attractive to 20-somethings
"We can't keep doing the same thing and expect something different. There's no such thing as keeping the status quo."
Developing a more Entrepreneurial Montana
- Telecommuting Programs Make Organizations Lean, Mean, And Green
The most energy-efficient office is the one that's never built. Now, advances in remote access technologies may finally make telecommuters just as secure and productive as those working at HQ.
- Rocky Mountain College Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE) students help youngsters learn about business
In classrooms across Billings, students from Rocky Mountain College are teaching their younger peers about the importance of saving and investing, undoubtedly a foreign concept to many students who rely on their parents for money.
- Companies not cultivating future leaders
"Leadership development is absolutely not keeping up with the demand."
Montana Economic Development
- Montana Property values up average of 55 percent
Gov. Brian Schweitzer has committed that property taxes won’t rise, on a statewide average, because of reappraisal, Bucks said. However, there are usually winners and losers who wind up below or above these averages.
- Entrepreneurs: Fur-lined dreams propel Red Lodge seamstress - The Montana Beaver Co. - "It's All About the Beaver"
I am an artist who uses beaver fur to create exceptional products that delight the senses.
- Sweet smell of success - The Montana Business Assistance Connection in Helena, Montana
Several small business owners shared their inspirational success stories at this week’s annual meeting of Montana Business Assistance Connection, the local economic development organization.
- Goomzee Releases Real Estate Mobile Marketing White Paper
Real estate professionals recognize the need for technology tools that connect them with today’s mobile buyer. But determining the right solution is not as easy as it may seem.
- Blackfoot Telecommunications Group Launches Customer Advisory Council in Missoula
The CAC will provide guidance to Blackfoot's development and marketing teams by sharing their buying and usage experiences, as well as their talents as successful business owners and managers.
- Winston Rod lays off workers. Twin Bridges, Montana rod maker cuts production staff
"The uncertainty is so great that people just aren't going into fly shops."
Regional Economic Development
- Jumping on the brand wagon - Helena - “The West’s Learning Center”
Helena’s hotel owners are backing a plan to tax themselves a dollar per room per night, with the money going toward marketing the city.
- Plans delayed for biodiesel crop camelina in Montana
Ron Zellar with the Montana Department of Agriculture said his agency and the Schweitzer administration remains confident the state can support one or possibly two processing plants for camelina.
- GE 'still on plan' for January facility opening in Billings
Stephen White, a spokesman for the GE Capital Finance division that's now doing business in Billings, said the corporation's latest financial restructuring proposal announced this week hasn't affected Montana.
- Western Montana's Regional Innovation Grant
“By the term of the grant…strategic planning activities will result in a completed regional implementation plan, supported by secured resources and short and long term talent development strategies.
- The 2009 DRAFT Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund (BSTF) Program Guidelines for next year are available for review and comment
Local governments may apply for assistance in the form of grants and loans for economic development projects that create net new qualifying jobs for Montana residents.
- The Montana Department of Labor and Industry Awards $75,000 in Grants.
"The timber industry has been hit hard during these difficult economic conditions and now it's more important than ever to leave no stone unturned when exploring additional opportunities to help diversify the economy in Western Montana. These grants are a great first step in that direction", says Labor Commissioner Keith Kelly.
- Workforce Strategy Center (WSC) funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
WSC has learned over the past decade -- in its work with community colleges, the business community and workforce and economic development agencies in over 20 states -- how to align employer demands with education and training policies and practices both effectively and cost-efficiently.
- Gov. Schweitzer invites you to Harvesting Clean Energy
Each year, the Harvesting Clean Energy Conference is held in a different state around the region --Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana – giving each state a chance to showcase successes in rural clean energy. This year, I'm proud to say, the 9th annual conference is coming back to Big Sky Country.
Developing Funding Opportunities in Montana
- How Interviewers Identify The Best Candidates
The preponderance of the evidence favors interview questions that ask about what interviewees actually did (“when” questions) and not what they would do (“if” questions). Although situational questions are not without merit, they might be more appropriately used as a test than in an interview.
Funding and Building your Business
- Thomas Weisel Partners Group LLC looks beyond high tech to capture 'money on the move'
Energy and mining are relatively new sectors for Weisel. What is your outlook for deal activity in this sector, and how does that compare with high tech?
Incubators and R&D
- Start Now: 6 Reasons Why This Economy Is Good For Startups
Here are six reasons why you should start your new company right now.
- How 'visionary' raised - and lost - a fortune - John P. Rogers and "Pay By Touch"
To some, the spectacular rise and equally spectacular collapse of Pay By Touch is a cautionary tale about the vagaries of venture capital, the importance of background checks - and, perhaps, the risks of taking your broker's tip at face value.
- HP Goes All In With An IT Transformation
Even with the economy in a fierce downturn, HP CIO Randy Mott preaches a high-risk, capital-intensive approach to transforming IT operations. But will other CIOs follow his lead?
- Insider Tips on How to Engage Venture Capitalists
Although many early stage CEOs seek VC funding, only a select few actually get it.
- Online Advertising 101 - For Web Site Startups
I think I have a fairly sound and business-oriented way to describe the online ad space
- Advice for startups seeking venture capital
"Almost by definition the entrepreneurs who have the moxie to walk through your door in tough times tend to have better ideas," says Mike Goguen, a VC with Sequoia Capital in Menlo Park, Calif.
Montana Education Excellence
- The Montana Board of Research and Commercialization Technology is accepting proposals for funding. Proposals are due March 2, 2009.
Eligible applicants are Montana-based research and commercialization centers. Research and commercialization centers are statutorily defined as the campuses of the University of Montana or Montana State University, tribal colleges, colleges of technology, community colleges, agricultural research centers, or private laboratories or research centers.
- University of Montana Researcher Lila Fishman Reveals Chromosomes at War
"We tend to think about natural selection among individuals shaping traits to fit the environment but natural selection can also occur at the gene or chromosome level." Lila Fishman
- Making connections for Indian education
“Not a lot of Native Americans are going into the hard sciences,” said Diane Friend, a University of Montana astronomy professor and part of BSSP. “That shouldn't be the case. In K-8 classrooms, we should be exciting everybody.”
- Montana State University's Shane Colvin (with three majors - biochemistry, music and cell biology) receives prestigious 'Irish Rhodes' scholarship
Colvin said that "it was humbling and exciting" to be among this year's Mitchell recipients, who include a National Book Award Nominee and an Emmy winner. "To have something that combined all of my musical and medical interests is a dream come true," Colvin said.
- New turbine at Stanford School in Montana designed to educate and save energy. Wind for Schools
The goal of the WfS is to install 15 small energy systems at rural schools in both Montana and Idaho between 2008 and 2010. Stanford’s system is one of four already in place; others have been installed in Cascade, Fairfield, and Livingston.
- Montana State University Billings and the University of Montana move MBA offices to College of Business
Today, officials from MSU Billings and UM will announce a memorandum of understanding that will locate UM's MBA offices in McDonald Hall, home of the MSU Billings College of Business.
- New Program Supports University of Montana Scholarships During Economic Slowdown
"Our students work hard to achieve excellence and meet their goals," UM President George Dennison said. "We have an obligation to make sure that today's economic slowdown doesn't slow down our students."
- OVP says it's committed to Oregon
Venture firms outside Oregon have shown fresh interest in the state lately. Seattle-based Madrona Venture Group and Voyager Capital each stationed new representatives in Portland this year.
- Laramie, Wyoming Based Firehole Technologies to Conduct Composites Analysis on XCOR’s new launch vehicle, the Lynx
This craft, first unveiled in March, 2008, will be built of composites. It will provide affordable access to space for researchers as well as individuals seeking to view Earth from the edge of space.
- Gates Grants Aim to Help Low-Income Students Finish College
$70 million in grants to double the number of low-income students who earn a college degree or vocational credential by age 26.
Connectivity & Communications
- Free on Friday - Whether it’s to save energy or lure young workers, states and localities are testing the four-day work week.
"The world's my oyster on Fridays."
- Does Public Information in Montana Need Better Enforcement?
Has the time come to remove the onus for enforcing public information and open meeting laws from the citizen or media complainant and put the burden on government?
- Handful of Government CIOs Aid Economic Development
Some experts believe there is a leadership vacuum just waiting to be filled by confident and ambitious public-sector CIOs.
- Economic Development: CIO Links Businesses and Universities
Sometimes public-sector CIOs can play a role in breaking down geographic barriers to economic development.
- Internet Group Wants Broadband In Every Pot
A coalition of more than 120 public-interest organizations plans to host a series of town hall meetings to discuss the future of the Internet and public access to broadband.
- New video networking from Cisco
By Cisco's estimate, video will account for 90 percent of Internet traffic in the next few years.
- Report: USA ignoring climate change threat - Yale University "The Climate Crisis and the Adaptation Myth"
"Despite a half century of climate change that has already significantly affected temperature and precipitation patterns and has already had widespread ecological and hydrological impacts, and despite a near certainty that the United States will experience at least as much climate change in the coming decades just as a result of current atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, little adaptation has occurred," reports Robert Repetto, the report author and, until recently, a Yale professor of economics.
- Efficiency Is Our Best Untapped Energy Source
The most important way to speed it up would be to reward utilities for cutting our bills, not selling us more energy. That reform is adopted in a handful of states but pending in about another two dozen. And there’s a lot of barrier-busting needed at all levels of government as well as firms and households.
- Carbon offsetting for the Internet
If you publish any kind of website, including a blog, you can go here and download free software that will track your page views, then calculate a dollar value for the amount of rainforest-killing, iceberg-melting CO2 your website generates each month.
- Montana Biomass meeting draws strong interest
“I’m sensing an incredible amount of enthusiasm for this.”
Cool Stuff That's Coming
- The Extended Life of Monty Python
The home page has a blog format with news about the surviving Pythons; elsewhere there are chat boards and e-mail forums. Membership is free.
- The 10 Silliest Videos We Wasted Time Watching This Year
This is a time-waster extraordinaire, flooded with clips that have little or no redeeming value... And yet we watch.
- Seismic Siren Shakes Up Distracted Drivers
"It feels like a tremor inside the vehicle,"
The Creative and Cultural Economy
- We Care: The Child Development Center helps children with developmental issues
The Child Development Center http://www.childdevcenter.org/ is a private, nonprofit agency providing services throughout the seven counties of western Montana to families with children who are either at risk for a developmental delay or have a diagnosed developmental disability.
- All about the art - World-renowned sculptor, Laury Dizengremel falls in love with Montana
This is the sculptor Laury Dizengremel: Turning the malleable earth into a portrait of her dream.
- Destructive Koobface virus turns up on Facebook
"A few other viruses have tried to use Facebook in similar ways to propagate themselves," Facebook spokesman Barry Schnitt said in an e-mail. He said a "very small percentage of users" had been affected by these viruses.
- Big spam operation takes a hit
Have you noticed less spam and phishing e-mails over the last few weeks from banks saying your “account has been compromised” or pitches from online pharmacies selling all kinds of pills?
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