Smart Cities Hinge on Open Data

A technologically-savvy city is no longer fodder for fantasy film; it’s an expectation. We live in a time where technology can and should make our urban environments more efficient in terms of energy consumption, transportation, land use, citizen participation and government processes.

Jul 5, 2016 Allison Joy

Class In Session

UC Davis Dean of Engineering Jennifer Sinclair Curtis on her vision for the program’s future

For decades, the UC Davis College of Engineering has consistently ranked in the top 35 engineering programs in the nation. That’s definitely good, but not remotely good enough for new engineering dean, Jennifer Sinclair Curtis, who took over the post last October. We recently sat down with the highly accomplished chemical engineer to discuss her vision for making the program even better.

Jun 16, 2016 Rich Ehisen
From left: Kings owner Vivek Ranadive, Derek Bluford and Velocity Capital General Partner Jack Crawford. Bluford’s business, Quicklegal, won the Sacramento Kings Capitalize competition in April. (Photography courtesy of John Jacobs)

Updated: Quicklegal

Need legal advice? Comprehensive app gives support with attorneys-on-demand

Update (2/2018): Quicklegal was named our Startup of the Month in June of 2016. Shortly after, we became aware of legal proceedings against Quicklegal. You can read more about the settlement judgement and the original complaint. In a statement to Comstock’s, CEO Derek Bluford said, “I had an employee who impersonated me. He defrauded me, our company and one of our clients.” In January of 2018, Derek Bluford was convicted of fraud.

Derek Bluford was in eighth grade when his single mom got into legal trouble. She had gotten injured at her prison job and couldn’t work full-time. Disability assistance wasn’t enough to cover utilities, food and rent, and they were about to get evicted from their duplex rental in Elk Grove.

Jun 6, 2016 Russell Nichols
Donna Bland, CEO, Golden 1 Credit Union.

Women’s Work

Four local leaders discuss their journeys to the top of male-dominated industries

Effective leaders don’t come from one mold. The women featured below have excelled in nontraditional industries due to their talent, vision, perseverance and the (sometimes unlikely) mentors who guided their trajectory. They shared their stories with us — where they started, their rise to leadership and their thoughts on mentoring the next generation of powerful women.

May 17, 2016 Laurie Lauletta-Boshart
(Shutterstock)

Sonic Boon

There is another potential path for treating ischemic stroke

In mammals, the developmental pathway known as sonic hedgehog (named after the popular video game character) regulates the generation and survival of neurons and other brain cells. But a team of UC Davis scientists found that this pathway plays a critical role in neuroprotection, regeneration and functional recovery after a clot blocks blood flow in the brain.

Apr 14, 2016 Russell Nichols
(Shutterstock)

Flipping Gift Cards

Through cloud-based software, GiftCardBin turns consumers’ trash to treasure

When it comes to gift-giving, you can’t go wrong with a gift card, right? Well, not exactly. Research shows that more than $1 billion in gift cards go unredeemed. Based in West Sacramento, GiftCardBin has been banking on that stat since 2008, buying and selling gift cards that might otherwise go to waste. (Like the $25 Starbucks card you probably have in your wallet right now.)

Feb 24, 2016 Russell Nichols

California Reports 49 Million Records Breached in Four Years

More than 49 million personal information records of California residents were compromised in 657 data breaches from 2012 to 2015, state Attorney General Kamala Harris said in a report citing tips on how people and businesses can protect themselves.

Feb 19, 2016 Joel Rosenblatt

The Dean Can Read Your Mind

Pierre Balthazard has spent years studying the brains of top bosses and now, he says he can neuro-train the brain into better leadership   

Imagine a world where you’re hooked to a system of electrodes that scans your skull, hunts for patterns, and then scores your IQ, emotional intelligence, ability to communicate, capacity for judgment and potential to be a good leader. Then imagine that the therapist says, “The bad news is that your score should be higher. The good news is that I can get it there by helping you physically change your brain.”

Feb 16, 2016 Jeff Wilser