Seattle 2035 Reading List: Stories to Get You Ready for Friday

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try to attract more under-represented minorities to apply for job openings. (Whoever works at Glowforge is going to be very busy. The Seattle company just broke crowdfunding records by taking $27.9 million in pre-orders for what’s billed as a consumer-friendly laser cutter. The 30-day campaign that ended on Saturday blew away the company’s own expectations and bested the $20.3 million Pebble smartwatch campaign on Kickstarter earlier this year. Full disclosure: I ordered one on the first day they were available.)

At Seattle 2035, Dziko, co-founder and executive director of the Technology Access Foundation, and Glowforge co-founder and CEO Dan Shapiro join Ada Developers Academy executive director Cynthia Tee for a discussion titled, “Developing All of Washington’s Talent: What’s Working?” Journalist Ruchika Tulshyan, author of The Diversity Advantage: Fixing Gender Inequality In The Workplace, will moderate.

—What’s going to drive mass adoption of augmented and virtual reality technology in gaming and other spheres? One forthcoming experiment will put VR technology in the hands of a very large group of people. As detailed in Wired last week, The New York Times will distribute upwards of 1.3 million Google Cardboard VR viewers (which turn a smartphone into a VR device) with its Sunday paper and through other channels the weekend of Nov. 7. In conjunction, The Times Magazine is releasing a VR documentary, “The Displaced,” following young war refugees.

Our panel of VR entrepreneurs building local companies with very different plans for VR, including how to enable it, will give us perspective on this new development, and the many that will follow as the VR field blossoms in the coming months with several anticipated hardware releases. They will be fresh from this Wednesday’s SEA-VR conference—tickets available until 5 p.m. Monday—ready to explain why the Seattle-area is poised to play a big role in this industry.

—Healthcare IT is already a booming business in Washington, and there are signs that this new and somewhat sprawling industry at the intersection of medicine and software has even more room to grow. The Cambia Grove and Washington Department of Commerce released an economic impact survey Monday that focuses on “Innovation in Health Care” as a business sector. Health IT is one of several categories identified in the broad healthcare innovation subsector. Others include healthcare delivery, research medical manufacturing, and drug development.

The survey counts some 772 companies engaged in healthcare innovation in Washington, employing about 22,500 people, and generating an outsized share of the broader health care sector’s economic output. One of these companies is Arivale, a startup spun out of the Institute for Systems Biology, to provide “scientific wellness” services. Leroy Hood, ISB President and Arivale co-founder, and Clayton Lewis, Arivale co-founder and CEO, will talk at Seattle 2035 about the company and the new industry it represents with Andrew Scharenberg, Principal Investigator at Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

1Energy Systems, which makes software to control and integrate energy storage and other resources to the electrical grid, was just named to the Global Cleantech Cluster Association‘s top 30 later-stage companies. It’s one of five Washington-based companies to make the list. The others are Demand Energy, Impact Bioenergy, OutBack Power Technologies, and SuperCritical Technologies.

At Seattle 2035, 1Energy founder and CEO Dave Kaplan will talk about the future of the electricity grid, the role storage and distributed generation (think rooftop solar) can play, and how Washington is emerging as a center of innovation in energy storage technology.

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