5 Startups Changing the Way We Eat Through the Seasons - featuring Instacart (YC S12) and GrubMarket (YC W15)
"AnalyticsMD, which is launching out of Y Combinator‘s latest batch, is a startup tackling a difficult but very worthwhile problem: how to boost the operational efficiency of hospitals and improve patient care by helping staff make better choices about how resources are allocated. Its founders liken their product to an “air traffic controller for the hospital and healthcare system”.
Their real-time analytics platform predicts changes in demand so that resources such as extra staff and beds can be brought in before they are needed to prevent scenarios such as emergency room waiting times spiraling outside target limits or the quality of patient care suffering. The HIPAA compliant SaaS software has been rolled out to several paying customers in the U.S. healthcare sector so far, including a major San Francisco Bay Area hospital system."
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Give Spoil a description of a friend, acquaintance, or relative’s interests and personality, and they’ll send them a gift picked out by a dedicated shopper who knows a specific category of products very well.
As a gift-giver, you don’t know what your recipient will get until they do. All you know is which gift tier you paid for on the site, with prices currently ranging from $35 for the entry-level package to $500 for the “Black” tier...Spoil co-founder Cristian Asenjo compares using the service to getting someone a gift card. You know how much you’re putting on the card, and you know roughly where they’d like to spend that much money, but you’re not picking out the exact gift they’ll receive."
"Credit card startup Final, which is focused on combating fraud online and off while giving consumers more control over their spending, has raised $1 million in seed funding from investors including Ludlow Ventures, T5 Capital Partners, Y Combinator and other fintech angels, in advance of the launch of its 2015 pilot program.
The company tells us it already has 37,000 consumers signed up on the waitlist to try the new card when it becomes available.
Final was founded a year ago by a team whose background includes experience in I.T., mobile payments, and various startups, including Boulder-based Simple Energy."
"If you love farmers market produce but hate going to the farmers market, then GrubMarket is a thing you should check out. Its marketplace connects consumers with locally sourced and organic food from nearby farms and producers in a number of cities around the country.
GrubMarket hopes to take advantage of a couple of larger trends that are happening among consumers. First, a growing number of consumers have become more conscious of where their food comes from, and are trying to support local producers. The second big trend is consumer laziness, and a general desire to have all things delivered to them.
To capitalize on those trends, GrubMarket offers up a marketplace through which consumers can buy food from local farms and producers. Once they’ve chosen from various different options, GrubMarket does the work of picking up those products from local producers and delivering them to consumers."
"We're excited to announce that the CDC's Advanced Molecular Detection initiative has named One Codex as the winner of its $200K "No-Petri-Dish" Challenge! We are thrilled to be recognized by a world-leading public health agency and excited to begin offering solutions for next-generation public health and epidemiology.
The "No-Petri-Dish" Diagnostic Test Challenge asked participants to develop a fast "straight-to-strain" method for identifying a type of E. coli known as STEC (a common cause of severe foodborne outbreaks). Current tests available to public health officials fall into two major categories: "culture-based" tests, which require growing a bacterial culture and can take days or weeks to complete; and faster, but significantly less informative tests for specific pathogens or toxins (e.g., PCR-based tests).
Our approach uses next-generation sequencing (NGS) data to offer fast, high-resolution diagnostic results. We developed a unique solution that is effective even for metagenomic samples with extremely low concentrations of E. coli or other pathogens (<= 1X coverage). This ultimately promises to help public health officials identify, track, and monitor outbreaks in near real-time."
YC W15's Chariot is opening its third route today in San Francisco. The "Cole Valley Cruiser" will offer trips from the Cole Valley and Haight-Ashbury neighborhoods to Downtown SF and SoMa.
"If you live in San Francisco, you’re probably well aware of how bad the public transportation system is here.* While the growth of on-demand transportation services like Uber and Lyft has eased some of the pain of traveling around the city, those options aren’t exactly cost-effective for the average commuter just trying to get to and from work.
A private shuttle startup called Chariot is hoping to improve transportation options for San Francisco residents, and it’s doing so by letting them tell it where they need service.
Chariot launched a beta version earlier this year to run a series of private shuttle routes between neighborhoods that are poorly served by current public transportation options in the city. The company hopes to provide a service that will be faster and more convenient than public bus lines, at a price to consumers that is competitive with those options. It does this by running 15-passenger vans on regular routes users can sign up for through its website or a mobile app."
“Imagine a world where you never lose your luggage,” says CEO of BlueSmart, Diego Saez-Gil. He motions to a compact carry-on suitcase sitting beside us and tells me he can track this piece of luggage anywhere.
Saez-Gil’s Y Combinator-backed startup makes these hardshell suitcases. It can locate, lock and weigh your belongings from an app on your smartphone.
It operates on a detachable, Bluetooth-enabled motherboard with a built-in GPS. Weight sensors embedded within the handle let you know if your suitcase meets International travel guidelines. There’s even a built-in 37 Watts lithium-ion battery and a USB plug so you can power your smartphone up to 6 times while on the go."
Pre-order a BlueSmart here
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At least, that line of thinking is what got co-founders Catherine Spence and Oliver Staehelin talking while they were at Stanford Business School. With backgrounds in product management and recruiting, respectively, they each had thoughts on how the process of recruiting could be approached from a different angle.
They started meeting weekly, and had already signed up First Republic Bank as a customer before they finished their minimum viable product in December 2013. With feedback from the bank and other early testers, the team (which by then included Google/Microsoft alum Xian Ke) launched Pomello in its current form last September."
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"If you’ve collected a large amount of data that you want to analyze, the go-to method for years has been to follow a programming paradigm called MapReduce, typically using Apache’s Hadoop framework. It’s a tried and true process, but it isn’t simple: Hadoop, which is mostly written in Java, has a reputation for being difficult.
Companies that want to get serious about data analysis often have to hire elite programmers who specialize in writing Hadoop MapReduce jobs. Or, they could contract a third-party company such as Cloudera to facilitate this kind of analysis. Neither of these options are an easy or inexpensive undertaking. This all means that early stage companies or projects often just don’t have the resources or know-how to take advantage of “big data.”
Pachyderm is a new startup launching out of the Winter 2015 class of Y Combinator that aims to make big data analysis much simpler and accessible. Claiming to provide the power of MapReduce without the complexity of Hadoop, Pachyderm is an open source tool that purports to enable programmers to run analysis of large amounts of data without writing a line of Java or knowing a thing about how MapReduce works."