Bye bye recession. The nightmare is over. Maybe. The Wall Street Journal (along with everybody else) is reporting that GDP grew by 3.5 percent in the third quarter, "likely marking an end to the worst recession since World War II." That's great news, but it was driven partly by large amounts of government spending, especially the Cash for Clunkers program. That's all over now. "Since the federal stimulus reached its maximum effect in the third quarter and the unemployment rate remains high, there's uncertainty over the sustainability of the recovery," The Journal reports. Business Insider says that we may be looking at a jobless recovery, which is better than no recovery, but still pretty bad.
The billionaires next door. Silicon Valley is hardly unaccustomed to concentrated wealth. But according to Valleywag, in one Palo Alto neighborhood not too far from Stanford, YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim lives next door (literally) to Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg, who for months has also been occupying a property a short walk away that serves as his social network's new headquarters. It's a modest, laid-back locale for Karim, whose estimated wealth is $64 million and Zuckerberg, who's worth $2 billion on paper. So why did a College Terrace tipster rat out the rich kids? In the midst of its fast growth, Facebook failed to provide sufficient parking and employees are taking up all the spots.
Finding grants for your small business. Information on where you can find, and how you can apply for, grants is publicly available and free. If your small business meets all of the necessary qualifications, you may just be able to receiving federal funding, writes CNN Money. Federal grant funding programs, such as the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, award more than $2 billion each year to qualified small businesses. While technology-based companies have historically won the majority of these grants, it's possible - if not a bit tougher - to receive funding as a non-tech business. Find out if your business qualifies for any special small business certifications, and investigate local government websites for an economic development agency you can get in touch with. Or, you can try Grants.gov to find and apply for federal grants.
The perfect Halloween costume for tech geeks. Courtesy of the Baltimore Sun's tech blog, check out this video of perhaps the coolest, if not the nerdiest, Halloween costumes this season. The video shows two guys decked out as life-size iPhones. Not cardboard and tin-foil iPhones, mind you. Actual working iPhones. The two devised life-sized, wearable monitors that displayed the functions of their standard iPhones right on their chests. Pretty amazing. The costumes may not land them dates on Halloween night, but it has surely won them the admiration of tech geeks everywhere.
Securing your company's data. It's a little shocking that, in 2009, any company would secure its data with a single, not-so-secret, password: "password." But considering that The Wall Street Journal found one for its piece on data protection, we're figuring there are a few more of you out there. So may we recommend that you read The Journal's article and then check out some more password protection tools right here.
Borrowing the app from Apple. For now, the growing app industry is all about smart phones. But Ford is opening a development kit for in-car apps, according to our siblings over at Fast Company. The developers envision drivers using the apps to plan trips, find points of interest, and access other data on-the-go. "The way we're developing the toolkit, you could sit in the comfort of your home and plan a roadtrip," says Prasad Venkatesh, who leads Vehicle Design & Infotainment at Ford. "At the click of a button, the cloud would make all that available to you in the car, and it would broadcast it to your social networking groups."
JASON DEL REY was a senior reporter covering technology, branding, and company culture for Inc. magazine. Before joining Inc., his work appeared in Newsday, The (Newark) Star-Ledger, and the Staten Island Advance, and on ESPN.com. He lives in New Jersey. @DelRey