Items tagged with 'business'
At the corner of 4th and Fulton in downtown Troy, in what was formerly an OTB space on the ground floor of a parking garage, is now a workshop with metal and wood working machinery, racks of tools and parts, 3-D scanners and printers, and biotech equipment.
But organizers see it as part of something even bigger.
Thoroughly updated at 1 pm
Vic Christopher -- who owns The Confectionery with his wife, Heather LaVine -- says they plan to turn a small building in the back of the 207 Broadway property into a private party space, along with another bathroom and a garden. It would also provide a second entrance for the "landlocked" Confectionery building. The goal is to have the expansion finished by mid summer.
Christopher says they've been turning down large groups because the just didn't have the space for them. The expansion will allow them to host groups of 20-50 people without compromising the cozy feel of the current space.
The Confectionery expansion is part of a larger plan for 207 Broadway.
Over at the video game industry site Polygon there's a long backstory on Vicarious Visions, the game studio in Menands that's now part of the giant Activision. The story has a bunch of interesting bits, including this one about a precarious point in the company's development:
At RPI's incubator, the [Guha and Karthik Bala] met with then-CEO of MapInfo, Mike Marvin. The executive was a star in the region, having led a company that made millions of dollars in revenue -- a number that seemed impossibly large to the brothers at the time.
Marvin liked the Balas and saw potential in a video game business. He agreed to work with them on one condition: they keep the business near Albany.
A video game developer in Albany? Albany lacked both a talent pool and a customer base, and it wasn't an area anyone would associate with video games. But at that point, what other option did they have? Besides, the city had grown on them.
They agreed to Marvin's deal.
There's also a bit about Tony Hawk colliding with complex math.
That's Shat as in William Shatner, and oetry as in poetry. Of course.
From the app's blurbage:
Shatoetry is an iPhone app that lets you arrange words - into statements, comments, messages, sentences, phrases, haiku, poetry, or even just random words... with this amazing payoff: whatever you arrange, you'll be able to hear William Shatner perform it for you.
And, of course, because it's William Shatner, there is the opportunity... for dramatic... pauses:
Though the dramatic pause has been a part of human communication for eternity, who else has mastered it like the man himself?
For more dramatic delivery to your Shatism, Shatoetry lets you add pauses between words with Space Bubbles.
Drop a Space Bubble into the Compose Field by simply giving the "Space" button a tap.
Drag it to wherever you want the pause to be... unheard ;)
1st Playable CEO Tobi Saulnier tells the Biz Review the app is part of her company experimenting with the iPhone app market. (1st Playable has done a lot of work developing games for platforms like the Nintendo DS.)
Oh, and his take on the app: it's "as different and as unique as a sunrise." [LAT]
The app is $2.99.
By the way: 1st Playable's office in Troy is gorgeous -- definitely worth a gawk if you ever have the chance.
Earlier on AOA: Kick Buttowski, launched from Troy
A lot can happen in a year.
That's something we were reminded of recently when we paid another visit to The Radix Center.
You might remember that the urban sustainability center won the AOA/Sunmark Startup contest in 2011. They used the $1,500 prize toward building an aquaculture system, in which they raise fish, watercress, and water lettuce.
Scott Kellogg and Stacy Pettigrew created the The Radix Center as an educational tool, to show people how to create a more sustainable urban environment by doing things like collecting rainwater, composting, reclaiming soil, and even operating their own greenhouses or aquacultures.
Last year we saw how things were just starting out in their 40 foot greenhouse in Albany's South End. This past Friday we stopped by again and -- well -- we'll let the pictures tell the story.
At first glance, the old diner car still looks like the Miss Albany -- well, a scrubbed and polished version of the Miss Albany. The booths are the same - the classic diner floors, counters and tile. But the walls are the first give-away that you're not in the Miss Albany anymore.
The famous signs warning patrons about unruly children have been replaced by classic old photos. They're from the families of Matt Baumgartner and his business partners, Jimmy and Demetra Vann. Sciortino's is named for Baumgartner's mother's family -- specifically for his grandparents, Frank and Rachel Sciortino, whose pictures occupy a prominent space behind the front counter.
The latest in Baumgartner's string of Capital Region business ventures -- and his continuing effort to bring life into to Albany's warehouse district -- opens on Wednesday.
Here's a look inside...
On a [recent] trip to Newport I learned that one of the most popular touring and charter boats in Newport, RI is the 80-foot schooner, Adirondack II [above], built by Scarano Boat Building of Albany.
Over the last 35 years Scarano has built dozens of classic sailing and power vessels right on the Hudson on the southern tip of the port of Albany. They are perhaps most famous for the three mast 178 foot Friendship of Salem that was built for the National Park Service.
They seem to be pretty well respected in the field and their boats can be found all over the country, including New York, Newport, Boston, Key West, Orcas Island, and the Chesapeake Bay.
My girlfriend and I had the pleasure of going out the Adirondack II. The captain, as expected, gave a little bit of history on the boat, and while doing so was quoted as saying "The boat was made in Albany, NY of all places!"
It's Friday afternoon...
Let's hear it for giant checks and hummus!
Yesterday the winner of this year's AOA/Sunmark Startup Grant -- 3 Chicks and a P, a small business in Rotterdam that makes hummus, bean dips, and tapenades -- got its prize money from the people at Sunmark.
The giant check came with $1,500 actual dollars (
in a smaller check via direct deposit) that 3 Chicks owner Jennifer Ritner-Paniccia and her husband Matthew say they'll use for nutritional labeling for some of their newer flavors. They're hoping the labeling will help get their products onto supermarket shelves. 3 Chicks currently sells at local farmers' markets and co-ops.
Everyone celebrated the giant check with broccoli and hummus.
We'll be checking back with 3 Chicks and a P in a few months to see how they're doing.
Yesterday Jerry Jennings and a group of downtown Albany business people stood in Albany City Hall to reassure everyone that the Pearl Street area is on the edge of a major change that will turn the city's downtown into a 24/7 community.
You probably know the reason for this affirmation session: the comment from Ralph Spillenger -- the owner of the Bayou Cafe and the soon-to-be-closed Jillian's -- that his business had failed, in part, because people are afraid to go downtown because of crime.
So, who's right? This situation is complicated because so much of it depends on perception.
But there are ways to make it clearer.
HAF Executive Director, Susan Holland says they've been pitched everything from a Christian recording company to a goth club -- but, for various reasons, the ideas didn't work out.
Then, not long ago, she heard from a company called Ravens Head Brewing. Its pitch: to turn the old Gothic church into the flagship location for its brewery, and a restaurant/events venue.
The Dark Sky weather app -- from Troy-based developers Adam Grossman and Jack Turner (Jackadam) -- is now available in the iTunes Store. The app aims to provide people with very specific weather forecasts for the near future based on location.
The question Dark Sky tries to answer is not "Will it rain tomorrow?" but rather "Will it be raining here during the next hour?" It can help determine if there's enough time for a quick bike ride before a thunderstorm, or how long you have might have wait before you can walk from your office to your car without an umbrella. It can also just satisfy the curiosity of bored meteorology nerds.
Speaking of meteorology nerds, we've been playing around with the app for the last day or so, and it's been kind of fun -- if not always accurate. The radar pictures are super clear and easy to read. And it shows whether the precipitation expected will be heavy, medium or mild. The no-precipitation predictions have been pretty good, and it did signal accurately a few times that rain was approaching. It failed to predict one light sprinkling of rain. (To be fair, we were in a moving car -- and Adam Grossman says that kind of light precipitation can be difficult to detect. And in general, this kind of stuff is harder than it looks.)
If the weather isn't interesting where you are, you can watch storms anywhere in the country.
Dark Sky is available for newer versions of the iPhone (4 and 4s), iPod Touch, and iPad. It's $3.99.
We're looking forward to playing with it more.
It's quiet inside the Fuller Road t-shirt factory, but the place is busy. Machines
are carouseling black, long-sleeved sweatshirts as workers oversee the printing and folding and stacking. Thirteen thousand shirts were printed and shipped before the first week of March had ended.
MerchNow makes shirts that bands sell to support themselves on tour. Owners Kate and Steve Reddy employ 95 people, offering a lunch program supplied from local farms and health insurance completely paid for by the company. Their mission is to create a business that sustains people and not just the bottom line.
Yes, punk rock and yoga.
All Good Bakers is ensconced in its new DelSo home and ready to open its doors.
Nick and Britin Foster and their team will start serving up breads, soups, salads, sandwiches and other goodies starting this Wednesday morning at 8 am.
Here's a peek inside the new place...
Inside a sprawling, former cannonball factory in Hudson, 17 deeply creative souls mill about quietly creating magic.
Their daily mission? To make Etsy safe for humanity. Well, that and hula-hooping.
Working at Etsy Hudson may be as close to internet superherodom as mere mortals can come.
It also might just be the best job on the planet.
Almost every guy thinks about it at one time or another, says Matthew Jager. The "manly dream" of owning a bar. And that's how it all started out.
Matthew, who teaches at The College of Saint Rose's business school, and his buddy John Curtin, a leadership trainer and former English teacher, were hanging out at the Albany Pump Station, having a couple of drinks, when one of them said, "Hey, you know what we should do? We should open a bar!" And the other one said, "Yeah!"
Eighteen months and $300,000 later, they do not own a bar.
Instead, they own a distillery -- The Albany Distilling Company -- in a building right next door to the Albany Pump Station. A few months from now they're hoping to put their white whiskey on the shelves of bars and restaurants around the region.
Have they ever made whiskey before? No. But this little hitch doesn't seem to worry them.
When is the last time you bought a book at a bookstore?
Not a virtual bookstore -- an actual, brick and mortar, physical space where you browse and read and walk around and maybe even talk with clerks or other readers bookstore? A place like Market Block, or The Book House --- or heck, even Barnes & Noble.
With Borders shutting down, the ubiquity of Amazon and the rise of the e-reader, we've been curious about -- OK, baffled by-- how independent bookstores manage to keep going.
Susan Novotny, owner of The Book House in Stuyvesant Plaza and Market Block Books in Troy gets asked about this all the time.
And some of her answers kind of surprised us.