Top 10 Startups of 2010

first_imgRelated Posts 2010 was a good year for Web startups. Deal flow, particularly at early stages, was active, and even though valuations were high, investor dollars were seemingly at the ready. Of the companies that made headlines and that led some of the major tech trends of the year, many were startups: Zynga (social gaming), Groupon (group buying), Foursquare (location-based networks), Tumblr (micro-blogging), and GetGlue (semantic Web), to name a few.In pulling together our list of the Top 10 Startups of 2010 for ReadWriteWeb’s “Best of” series, we’ve decided to look beyond some of those big names and “established” startups (the term gets applied so broadly). Rather than lumping together new companies no matter their age or size, no matter whether they have an acquisition offer by Google or have a Hollywood biopic about their founder, we’ve decided to restrict our list to those startups who were founded or who launched in 2010.We chose some of these startups due to their great features and impressive momentum. We chose some for addressing important consumer and business pain-points in particularly innovative ways. Whether any of these companies are the next Facebook or Google hardly matters. These startups left their mark on 2010, many of them helping to foster some of the most important trends of the year.In no particular order…Instagram: Photo Sharing Goes Viral I can’t look at my Twitter or Facebook stream without seeing a flurry of shared links from Instagram. And I even confessed in October, the app has made me an iPhone photo addict. audrey watters Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting ReadWriteWeb’s 2010 In Review:Top 10 Semantic Web Products of 2010Top 10 RSS and Syndication Technologies of 2010Best BigCo of 2010: FacebookTop Trends of 2010: App StoresMost Promising Company For 2011: SimpleGeoTop Trends of 2010: Internet TVTop 10 Startups of 2010Top Trends of 2010: PrivacyThe free app allows users to snap photos, apply one of 11 filters, and then quickly and easily publish them to a variety of social networks, as well as follow, comment, and like within the app itself. The new camera that came with the iPhone 4 this summer spawned a lot of great mobile phone apps, and Instagram is hardly alone in the photo-sharing space. But it has had incredibly viral adoption – growing by about a 100,000 users a week after its release in October according to a thread on Quora, with rumors of 1 million users to date.Quora: High Quality Q&A Did you notice that reference in the Instagram entry above? “According to a thread on Quora.” It’s something we heard a lot this year as the Q&A site, founded by former Facebook CTO Adam D’Angelo, became an important new communication and knowledge-sharing tool for the tech industry. Quora launched in private beta in January and opened to the public in June. As with Instagram, Quora is a startup in a crowded space; there are no shortage of Q&A sites. But Quora has attracted a very high caliber of respondents during its beta, particularly those “in the know” in Silicon Valley, and the site has become a real treasure trove of news and advice. Quora allows you to subscribe to topics, users, and questions, and the ability to vote up good answers, along with the ability to offer edits on questions and answers, have helped to build a smart network on the site.Flipboard: Curated Reading, Built for the iPad We already recognized the startup as one of this year’s Top Semantic Web Products, but Flipboard – along with the iPad – helped usher in a change in the way in which we consume Web content. The free app lets you curate various feeds – RSS, Twitter, Facebook – and presents them to you via a beautiful, touchscreen UI. Rather than scrolling through the Web as we have been trained perhaps to do, Flipboard allows us to more easily browse and read. Having acquired the semantic technology startup Ellerdale, Flipboard’s technology delivers a more personalized reading experience.Chatroulette: Spontaneity, Chat… and Dicks Flash in the pan? Maybe. Launched in late 2009 (too late and too obscure for the “Best of” lists for that year), Chatroulette took off in early 2010, and at the peak of its popularity this year, Chatroulette boasted a million-plus users. Chatroulette connects you randomly with another person via your webcam, so you can chat via text, audio, and video with a stranger. If you don’t like the conversation, the “Next” button places you with someone else. A post on Techcrunch surmised that the site was “89% male, 47% American, and 13% perverts,” the latter figure seeming a tad low based on my experience. Despite – or maybe because of – the dicks, the site gained a lot of buzz, spawning a number of memes as well being a topic on South Park – high honors. Chatroulette also spawned a number of clones as the idea of random, spontaneous encounters became popular.Rapportive: The Gmail Plug-in I Am Thankful for Every Day Marshall Kirkpatrick wrote this headline back in March: “Stop What You Are Doing & Install This Plug-in: Rapportive. And honestly, I’d issue the same command today. Rapportive replaces the ads in your Gmail side bar – which is cool enough right there – but then, it fills that space with a wealth of info – a picture of the person who sent you an email, their job title from LinkedIn, recent Twitter messages they’ve sent and more. It’s become an indispensable tool for me, giving me background information right within my browser for the people with whom I communicate via email. Rapportive demonstrates some of the useful tools that can be built with our social data.Diaspora: The Anti-Facebook, Crowdfunded When ReadWriteWeb first coveredDiaspora in May, the group of 4 NYU students were raising money via Kickstarter to fund their idea for an alternative to Facebook. Diaspora sought to build an open-source, decentralized social network, one that respected users’ privacy. Continued dust-ups this year over Facebook and privacy, along with the fact that Diaspora’s challenge to Facebook simply made for a compelling story, gave the group a lot of press.Within days of ReadWriteWeb’s first story, the funds raised via Kickstarter skyrocketed from $8000, just shy of its $10,000 to almost $200,000 from over 6000 backers. Diaspora released the first version of the developer code in September, and launched in private alpha in late November. The expectations for Diaspora were set quite high, with all the buzz and funding it received, and while those may be difficult to meet, Diaspora certainly represents the power of crowd funding, as well as an interest in making sure the social Web is not centralized in one company.Hipmunk: The Power of a Good User Experience Oftentimes we put up with painful experiences as consumers simply because there are no good alternatives, and we can lull ourselves into thinking that those unsatisfactory ways of doing things are just “how things are done.” So when I first heard about Hipmunk, an airline flight search engine, I wondered “Why?” There are already many ways to search online, ways to bid for your tickets – albeit none of them great. But it’s better, I suppose, than dealing with an airline directly.But one look at Hipmunk – even better, one search via Hipmunk – and you can see how smart entrepreneurs can enter an already-crowded space and disrupt it with a great user interface and a great user experience. Rather than forcing you to click through pages of results to find the right flight, Hipmunk gives you the results on one page and allows you to have a pretty granular level of control over exactly the things that make a flight feasible for you – price, time of day, number of stops, for example.LearnBoost: Bringing the Teacher Gradebook to the Web with Open Source Like Hipmunk, LearnBoost is tackling a space that may not be particularly sexy – Web-based classroom administration tools. But tracking grades and attendance is an important, if not cumbersome, responsibility of teachers, many of whom still use the paper-and-pencil gradebook for record-keeping. In fact, LearnBoost co-founder and CEO Rafael Corrales sees that paper gradebook as the startup’s main competitor, and so LearnBoost has built a product that is not just beautiful but incredibly easy to use. LearnBoost seems to really understand educators’ needs, something that is incredibly important in education technology. LearnBoost is free, it supports data portability, and it integrates with Google Apps, for example, and the company has been very responsive since launching in August to update the product to suit the needs of those using it.But LearnBoost doesn’t just receive kudos for its work in education technology. The company has been a leader in developing a variety of open-source tools, including Mongoose for storage, Soda for acceptance testing, and Socket.io for real-time communication. For a new company, LearnBoost has an impressive following on GitHub.Square: The Future of Money is Mobile We may be slightly cheating to squeeze this one into a 2010 list, as Square, the brainchild of Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, allows you to accept and pay via physical credit cards using a card swiper that plugs into the headphone jack of your mobile device. The hardware and app are free, but Square takes a small cut of each transaction.Square spent most of 2010 in private beta and had its share of hardware and security problems, but the addition to the team in August of Paypal veteran Keith Rabois marked a big win for the company. Square now says it’s processing millions of dollars of mobile transactions per week, and boasts some avid users – small businesses and independent merchants who are looking for an easy and mobile way to manage credit card transactions.InDinero: The Mint.com of Young Entrepreneurs Describing a startup as the “Mint.com” of something felt like one of the most overused phrases in pitches in 2010. But in the case of InDinero, the description actually works, as the company really does aim to provide a similar sort of real-time financial dashboard to small businesses. Unlike traditional accounting software, InDinero is easy to set-up and use, and the analytics it offers provides small businesses with a wealth of important data.But a nod to InDinero isn’t simply recognition that the company addresses an important business need or that it has gathered impressive traction – and funding – since launching this summer. It’s a nod to co-founder Jessica Mah, who founded her first Internet startup at age 13, entered the University of California, Berkeley at age 15 to study computer science, and now at age 20, is the CEO and architect of a profitable Internet company. Yes, of course, all the startups in this list were founded by incredibly smart and talented entrepreneurs, but Mah is particularly inspiring.Selecting 10 top startups for 2010 was not an easy task. Do you agree with our assessments? Did we miss anyone? Let us know in the comments who you think should – or shouldn’t – make the list. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#2010 in Review#Features#web#Year in Review A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Weekly Wrap-Up: Twitter API Change, RIP Adobe Flash On Android, 5 Reasons Why Web Publishing Is Changing (Again)

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market adam popescu Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts center_img What do Twitter’s API changes mean for developers and users? Adobe no longer offers flash for android devices. And why web publishing is changing — again. After the jump read about this week’s top stories on some key topics that are shaping the web – Location, App Stores, and Real-Time Web – plus highlights from six of our channels. Read on for more.Twitter to Developers: Display Tweets Our Way Or ElseAfter months of anticipation, Twitter laid out the changes to its API. The message: Twitter does not want any client apps not made by Twitter. MoreDevelopers Are Pissed, Frustrated by New Twitter DecreeMany view the change as the latest move from the company towards tightening its grip and owning the platform. The days of popular third-party services may be numbered. For others, it means manpower and time in order to change. MoreRIP Adobe Flash on AndroidAdobe announced last year that mobile Flash would no longer be supported on Android beyond version 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.More5 Reasons Why Web Publishing is Changing (Again)We’re witnessing another sea change in Web publishing. From Pinterest at the beginning of this year to the launch this week of a new product from two Twitter founders, Medium, 2012 has been a year where the norms of publishing are being challenged.MoreMore Top StoriesBig Brains = Bigger Social NetworksForget Klout. The real measure of social media prowess turns out to be the size of your brain.MoreWhy Twitter Just Pushed Developers Aside: To Secure Its FutureTwitter’s long-awaited crackdown on outside apps could prove to be one of the boldest and most controversial moves in its history. But if you consider Twitter’s position, it’s actually reasonable. And it could play an important role in Twitter’s survival.MoreAT&T to Spend Tens of Millions to Promote Safe TextingTexting while driving contributes to nearly 100,000 crashes causing injury or death per year. Loathe to be held responsible for such a grim statistic, AT&T has announced a campaign to stop texting while driving as well as an app to help curb the practice.MoreWhen is the Best Time to Post on Instagram?Effective Instagramming is, first and foremost, about quality. Good composition, interesting angles, worthy subjects and even a bit of humor come into play. As always on social networks, though, when you post is nearly as important as what you post.MoreUse This App to Create Anonymous, Disposable Email AddressesEmail addresses are the keys to the kingdom of all our personal data. It’s too bad we had to relearn this lesson last week when Wired’s Mat Honan had the crap hacked out of him.MoreWhat’s the Hardest Thing You Ever Had To Do? Startup Founders Share Their Darkest MomentsWe asked a panel of eight successful young entrepreneurs from the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) to reveal the hardest, most wrenching thing they’ve had to do to build their businesses.MoreReadWriteWeb ChannelsStart10 Ways Startups Can Track Trends: And Why It’s So Important8 Indispensable Qualities For Your First Startup Hire Want Your Startup to Succeed? Stay HomeBizDear Marissa Mayer: Don’t Change YahooAmazon Gets Ready for Sales TaxesEnterpriseFollow ReadWriteEnterprise on Twitter.The New Microsoft Office: 20 Things to Like, Not Like and Worry AboutUtilities and Other Industries Not Ready for Big Data, Say New Oracle ReportsDon’t Believe the Doomsayers: Microsoft’s Q4 Results Are Good News CloudWhat’s Killing the Printer Business?Is a VMware/EMC Cloud Spin-Off in the Works?HackFollow ReadWriteHack on Twitter.Copyright Enforcement Irony: Hip Hopper Lord Finesse Silences YouTube Rapper Dan BullMobileFollow ReadWriteMobile on Twitter.Tablets & PCs: One Industry or Two?ReadWriteWeb CommunityYou can find ReadWriteWeb in many places on the Web, a few of which are below.ReadWriteWeb on FacebookReadWriteWeb on TwitterReadWriteWeb on Google+ReadWriteWeb on LinkedInReadWriteWeb on PinterestSubscribe to the ReadWriteWeb Weekly Wrap-upWant to have this wrap up delivered to you automagically? You can subscribe to the Weekly Wrap-up by RSS or by email. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#web#Weekly Wrap-ups last_img read more

SAD trying to politicise murder: Punjab Minister

first_imgPunjab Cooperation Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa on Friday dismissed allegations levelled by Shiromani Akali Dal leader Bikram Singh Majithia against him in connection with the killing of an Akali leader in Gurdaspur.The Minister, in a statement said, “Bikram Majithia is trying to politicise a murder”. He added that the law will take its own course and investigations will reveal the motive and the culprits behind the murder of Dalbir Singh.last_img

India beat Pakistan 4-2, win Asian Champions Trophy hockey

first_imgGoalkeeper S Sreejesh stole the limelight with two crucial saves as India defeated arch-rivals Pakistan 4-2 via penalty shootout in a nerve-wrecking final to clinch the inaugural Asian Champions Trophy hockey tournament here on Sunday.The high-voltage summit clash was marred by Pakistan coach’s unwarranted action of constantly abusing Indian players from the roof of the stadium. Whenever there was an infringement from the Indian side, he used the ‘F’ word liberally. And whenever the umpires blew against India, he hollered ‘Thank You’.Rajpal Singh, Danish Mujtaba, Yuvraj Walmiki and Sarvanjit Singh scored for India in the penalty shootout while Muhammad Rizwan and Waseem Ahmed sounded the board for Pakistan after both the sides were locked goalless in the normal and extra time.India started the shootout on a wrong note when Pakistan goalkeeper Imran Shah saved the shot from Gurwinder Singh Chandi. Sreejesh then came to the fore with a save off Haseem Abdul Khan. It was then Mujtaba’s turn and he neatly sent the ball past Shah to give India 1-0 lead.Pakistan equalised when Rizwan scored but Indian captain Rajpal slotted the ball home to give his side 2-1 up. Then came the crucial save by Sreejesh as he stopped Shafqat Rasool from scoring, advancing and taking the shot on the pads.Yuvraj made it 3-1 and the Pakistan veteran Waseem cut the scores to 3-2 but Sarvanjit’s conversion past Shah ensured India ran out champions.Earlier in the match, both India and Pakistan had ample opportunities to finish off the match in regulation time. Pakistan earned seven penalty corners to India’s one but they failed to beat the Indian defence and the goalkeeper Sreejesh.advertisementAsian Games champions Pakistan were initially more attacking pushing the Indian defence back. Shakeel Abassi made some fine runs into the Indian striking circle but V Raghunath stood out with his tackling and clearances.The Indian forwards had a couple of counter-attacks which the Pakistan defence managed to clear. It was a tense match with a few skirmishes between the players. SV Sunil was the first to be shown the green card for a rough tackle.Pakistan had their first penalty corner in the 14th minute which Sreejesh charged out and saved. India was losing the ball consistently in the midfield. The players were hasty and failed to keep the ball to ensure the passes went right.In the 29th minute, India had their first penalty corner but Ignace Tirkey failed to trap properly and thus wasting the opportunity.Pakistan had a bunch of penalty corners in the second half and they were to blame themselves for letting the match drift to the shoot-out. They could not score off the 41st, 47th and 48th minute penalty corners.With 14 minutes of regulation time left, India got a golden chance with Mujtaba having only Pakistan goalkeeper in front but could not place the ball in and shot wide. In the 60th and 62nd minutes, Pakistan again wasted three penalty corners.India could have clinched the issue in the 65th minute but Yuvraj shot out from a handshaking distance. After a tense struggle in 15 minutes of extra time, it finally came down to the shootout in which Sreejesh carried his good form and ensured India return champions.Indian coach Michael Nobbs was almost in tears and said, “This is a great win. Both teams played well and had enough chances. But it is fantastic to see a young Indian side win such a prestigious tournament.”last_img read more

AAP welcomes Sidhus decision to to quit RS, opens its doors

first_imgNew Delhi, Jul 18 (PTI) Aam Aadmi Party today welcomed BJP leader Navjot Singh Sidhus decision to quit from Rajya Sabha and opened its doors to the cricketer-turned-politician to join its ranks, signalling an imminent churning ahead of next years Punjab Assembly polls.Within minutes of Sidhus resignation, AAPs Punjab convenor Sucha Singh Chhotepur and AAP state in-charge Sanjay Singh hailed Sidhus “courageous” decision and said the party was “looking forward” to welcome him.AAP spokesperson Deepak Bajpai said Sidhu would be making an “announcement” soon, adding that the party is open to the joining of individuals who believe in honest politics.”Navjot Singh Sidhu is most welcomed to join @AamAadmiParty @sherryontopp @AAPPunjab2017. Appreciate Navjot Sidhu and Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu Move, looking forward for their Welcome to @AAPPunjab2017 @AamAadmiParty @DrDrnavjotsidhu (sic),” Chhotepur tweeted.Asked if Sidhu could be made AAPs chief ministerial candidate in case he decides to take the plunge, AAPs Sangrur MP Bhagwant Mann said, “Whoever joins AAP, he is clearly told that it has to be unconditional.”Sidhu, a former Lok Sabha MP from Amritsar, was convicted in a culpable homicide case in Patiala and is out on bail.Singh, a member of AAPs highest decision-making body Political Affairs Committee, tweeted, “Navjot Singh Sidhu has taken a courageous step by resigning as a BJP member from the Rajya Sabha. I welcome his decision.”Sidhus decision came on a day AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal is touring Punjab as part of the partys intense push to capture power in the northern state by defeating the incumbent SAD-BJP alliance and Congress in a triangular contest. PTI SBR SMJ ZMN SMJadvertisementlast_img read more

Yuvrajs brand YWC to have its first store in Varanasi

first_imgMumbai, Aug 9 (PTI) YWC, the premium sports lifestyle brand by cricketer Yuvraj Singh, has announced the launch of its first brick and mortar standalone store in Varanasi.YWC will also be available through other multi brand outlets in Varanasi, via a shop-in-shop format, the company said.In the online space, the brand is available on Myntra and Jabong besides its own portal www.ywcfashion.com. Part of the product proceeds go to Yuvraj Singhs foundation for cancer awareness – YouWeCan. ——– Jugnoo launches partnership program for B2B productsJugnoo, a hyperlocal startup supported by auto rickshaw network and its B2B SaaS offerings, commences a new service called Jugnoo Partner Program, it said.The program invites various businesses and entrepreneurs to join as partners.It is designed for partners to have access to resources and knowledge needed to offer Jugnoo services to the final customers, Jugnoo said in a statement here.The aim is to provide top quality customer experience and to explore better business opportunities that would eventually help in generating more sales globally, it added. PTI DSK ARS SDMlast_img read more

It would have been crazy if Argentina had missed out on the World Cup: Lionel Messi

first_imgArgentina got what they deserved when they qualified for next year’s World Cup in Russia with a 3-1 victory over Ecuador, according to football legend Lionel Messi.The Albiceleste entered Tuesday’s final round of South American group qualifiers in sixth place, outside the automatic World Cup places, reports Xinhua news agency.But fired by a Messi hat-trick, the two-time World Cup winners rallied from a goal down to win in Quito and jump to third in the final CONMEBOL standings.”It would have been crazy if Argentina had missed out on the World Cup,” Messi told reporters after the match. “People have questioned the team but tonight we showed that we deserve to be there.””Everybody knows what we went through to be in the World Cup. We have to enjoy this and stay calm because there is still a long way to go until the tournament. We know that we can get better.”Argentina, Colombia & Uruguay qualify ?Messi hat-trick ?Despair for Chile & Paraguay ?S America #WCQ review ?????? https://t.co/FP7gqkDxeE pic.twitter.com/dvSpXyXxF5- #WCQ ????? (@FIFAWorldCup) October 11, 2017Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli revealed that he referred to Messi to help inspire his players before the match.”I told the group that Messi does not owe Argentina a World Cup, but rather football owes the World Cup to him,” Sampaoli told a news conference. “Argentina took a step forward, and in time we can be competitive,” he added.The 2018 World Cup will be played in 11 Russian cities from June 14 to July 15.advertisementQUALIFIED! ??Congratulations, ????Argentina! ???The 2014 finalists have their spot in ????ºRussia! #WCQ pic.twitter.com/10DigB4Dwd- #WCQ ????? (@FIFAWorldCup) October 11, 2017last_img read more

Iranian Female Soccer Fan Dies After Setting Herself On Fire

first_imgDUBAI, United Arab Emirates — An Iranian woman detained for dressing as a man to sneak into a soccer stadium to watch a match has died after setting herself on fire upon learning she could spend six months in prison, semi-official news outlets reported Tuesday.The self-immolation death of 29-year-old Sahar Khodayari has shocked Iranian officials and the public, becoming an immediate hashtag trend across social media in the Islamic Republic.It also comes as FIFA is working with Iranian authorities to overcome a ban on women entering stadiums for men’s games, a ban in place since the country’s 1979 Islamic Revolution. FIFA wants the issue resolved before Oct. 10 when Iran — the top-ranked team in Asia — hosts its first home World Cup qualifier against Cambodia.FIFA said Tuesday it was “aware of that tragedy and deeply regret it.”“FIFA convey our condolences to the family and friends of Sahar and reiterate our calls on the Iranian authorities to ensure the freedom and safety of any women engaged in this legitimate fight to end the stadium ban for women in Iran,” FIFA said in a statement.FILE – In this Oct. 16, 2018 file photo, Iranian women cheer as they wave their country’s flag after authorities in a rare move allowed a select group of women into Azadi stadium to watch a friendly soccer match between Iran and Bolivia, in Tehran, Iran. Sahar Khodayari, an Iranian female soccer fan died after setting herself on fire outside a court after learning she may have to serve a six-month sentence for trying to enter a soccer stadium where women are banned, a semi-official news agency reported Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019. The 30-year-old was known as the “Blue Girl” on social media for the colors of her favorite Iranian soccer team, Esteghlal. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)Khodayari died on Monday at a Tehran hospital after suffering burns across 90% of her body. She had been on a respirator since dousing herself with gasoline in front of Tehran’s Ershad Courthouse on Sept. 2, according to the Iranian news website Rokna, which publishes in Iran with government permission.She had just learned she could be tried by a Revolutionary Court in Iran and be put in prison for six months, her father told the website.Khodayari’s sister told Iran’s pro-reform Shahrvand newspaper that her sister suffered from bipolar disorder. Her father said she had stopped taking medication a year ago.Prominent lawmaker Ali Motahari, who is close to Iran’s relatively moderate President Hassan Rouhani, tweeted that Khodayari didn’t deserve prison time and offering her “some advice” would have been enough.In March, Khodayari tried to sneak into Tehran’s Azadi Stadium to watch her favorite team, Esteghlal, take on the United Arab Emirates team Al Ain. As in other matches, she disguised herself as a man by wearing a blue wig and a long overcoat, gaining the nickname the “Blue Girl.” However, police arrested her after an altercation and detained her.She spent three nights in jail before being released pending the court case. She reportedly returned to the court to retrieve her seized mobile phone and heard she could face prison time.News of her death ricocheted across Iran on Tuesday, with tributes hashtagged “BlueGirl.”Former Bayern Munich midfielder Ali Karimi — who played 127 matches for Iran and has been a vocal advocate of ending the ban on women — urged Iranians in a tweet to boycott soccer stadiums to protest Khodayari’s death.Iranian-Armenian soccer player Andranik “Ando” Teymourian, the first Christian to be the captain of Iran’s national squad and also an Esteghlal player, said in a tweet that one of Tehran’s major soccer stadiums should be named after Khodayari “in the future.”Female lawmaker Parvaneh Salahshouri called Khodayari “Iran’s Girl” and tweeted: “We are all responsible.”There was no report on Khodayari’s death from Iranian state media, nor its prominent semi-official news agencies. The conservative Shafaqna news agency acknowledged her death in a brief item Tuesday, noting that the case had drawn international attention and caused “counterrevolutionary media” to cry over the case.FIFA has been trying to push Iran to allow women in for matches. A partial exception came in November when hundreds of Iranian women, who were separated from male supporters, were allowed into the Azadi Stadium in Tehran to watch the Asian Champions League final.However, local matches have continued the restriction. Volleyball, another popular sport, similarly sees officials bar women from attending men’s games in the capital, Tehran, though women were allowed in some matches in other Iranian cities.Hard-liners and traditional Shiite clerics, citing their own interpretation of Islamic law, believe in segregating men and women at public events, as well as keeping women out of men’s sports.However, that has drawn criticism from human rights activists abroad, as well as at home.“The stadium ban is not written into law or regulation but is ruthlessly enforced by the country’s authorities,” wrote Mindy Worden, the director of global initiatives at Human Rights Watch.She added that Khodayari’s suicide underscores “the need for Iran to end its ban on women attending sports matches — and the urgency for regulating bodies like FIFA to enforce its own human rights rules.”Amnesty International separately said that as far as it knows, “Iran is the only country in the world that stops and punishes women” seeking to enter soccer stadiums. Saudi Arabia, a longtime holdout, recently started allowing women to attend matches under a push from Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.“What happened to Sahar Khodayari is heart-breaking and exposes the impact of the Iranian authorities’ appalling contempt for women’s rights in the country,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty’s Middle East and North Africa research and advocacy director.“Her only ‘crime’ was being a woman in a country where women face discrimination that is entrenched in law and plays out in the most horrific ways imaginable in every area of their lives, even sports,” Luther added.By: Jon Gambrell, Associated PressTweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Designing electronic speed controllers for drones

first_imgThe spread of drones is constantly growing, with a variety of applications ranging from the hobby sector, to the commercial and industrial fields, up to the most advanced military applications. Drones have the advantage of being able to be remotely operated, thus flying over areas that would be too difficult, dangerous or inconvenient to reach in person. The applications in the commercial field are manifold: agriculture, monitoring of plants and buildings, shooting areas and even the delivery of packages, medicines or necessity goods. New and further applications of drones will most likely be identified in the coming years, when they will no longer be considered only as toys or gadgets, but as valuable tools to improve the quality of our lives.Electronic speed controlThis article focuses on medium- and high-range drones, normally equipped with brushless DC motors. Motors of this type require careful and continuous regulation of speed and of the relative direction of rotation; in some cases, the possibility of implementing a real dynamic brake is needed as well. The circuit responsible for these functions is the ESC (Electronic Speed Controller), which is typically composed of a power supply stage, a circuit for detecting the current, a microcontroller and a communication interface with the flight controller (Figure 1). The design of an ESC involves a series of important features concerning:the topology used for motor control;compromise between cost and efficiency (hence the time of flight);type of battery installed on the drone;required performance (for example, maximum controllable motor speed);electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and immunity to interference.Figure 1: Block diagram of a droneThere are two types of brushless motors suitable for use on drones: DC brushless motors (BLDC) and AC brushless motors (BLAC), also known as permanent magnet synchronous motors (PMSM). The choice of which type of motor to use is typically based on the selected control algorithm: trapezoidal or field-oriented control (FOC). More precisely, a trapezoidal motor control algorithm has the following characteristics:motor control based on a six-step commutation sequence;detection of the magnetic angle of the rotor, to perform the commutation at the correct angle (each step corresponds to an angle of 60 degrees);in the absence of sensors, the commutation angle is estimated by measuring the phase-voltage back EMF.Instead, a FOC control algorithm has the following features:control of the motor through sinusoidal phase voltages or currents (FOC);detection of the magnetic field angle of the rotor with a minimum accuracy between 1 and 5 degrees, to always ensure the maximum torque;in the absence of sensors, the rotor magnetic angle is estimated based on the motor’s phase voltages and currents.A sensorless control system, compared to the alternative based on mechanical speed sensors, is often preferred as it keeps the project costs low and helps to improve the robustness of the system.Design considerationsThe PWM signal, used to commutate between the different power stages, varies according to the type of control selected. Figure 2 shows the filtered phase voltages obtained after removing the PWM carrier, referred to the case of trapezoidal and sinusoidal motor control techniques.Figure 2: Comparison of waveforms used for trapezoidal and sinusoidal commutationThe trapezoidal control is affected by an issue (a problem), due to the abrupt variation between each phase, which generates torque ripples and current spikes, reducing the efficiency and producing vibrations. At the electrical level, the DC bus voltage of an ESC is between 7.4V and 22.4V, while the current from the lithium polymer battery (LiPo) is between 10A and 20A. To minimize interference, the PWM frequency used for commutation between phases is between 30kHz and 60kHz. Once the control algorithm has been chosen, it must be decided whether the control shall be performed in open-loop or closed-loop. Figure 3: ESC for a brushless motor with sensorless controlThe closed-loop control is preferable, since, by measuring the current necessary to make the motor perform the desired displacement, a higher efficiency and accuracy are obtained with respect to the open-loop solution. In the case of trapezoidal control, only one shunt current must be measured, while in the case of sinusoidal control it is necessary to measure up to three shunt currents (Figure 3). When using a closed-loop control, it is necessary to perform a tuning of the algorithm so that the motor remains stable at high rotation speeds (that is, over 12kRPM).Solutions for commercial dronesThe design of an ESC for drones requires high-grade components, specifically designed for driving high-speed motors at maximum speed. Texas Instruments has developed an MCU family, named InstaSPIN, which makes designing three-phase motor control applications easier. InstaSPIN-FOC, suited for sensorless systems, features a fast software encoder with torque and velocity control for any three-phase motor. InstaSPIN-MOTION is instead addressed to sensor systems and provides position, velocity and torque control for any three-phase motor. Besides MCU, TI offers other products suitable for ESC design, such as the NexFET series of power MOSFETs and the DRV8305 three-phase gate driver with three integrated current shunt amplifiers.InstaSPIN comes with a high voltage motor control kit, a complete reference design for learning and experimenting with digital control of high voltage motors. Based on the revolutionary InstaSPIN-FOC a nd InstaSPIN-MOTION motor control technologies, the platform includes a TI C2000 InstaSPIN 32-bit microcontroller (figure 4). It allows developers to quickly identify, automatically tune, and control a three-phase motor, thus quickly providing a stable and functional motor control system. The kit is an excellent, all-around motor inverter design tool, showcasing sensorless and encoder-based control of the most common types of high voltage, three phase motors, including AC induction (ACI), brushless DC (BLDC), and permanent magnet synchronous motor (PMSM & IPM).STMicroelectronics also offers a complete reference design for electronic speed controller (ESC), implementing a sensorless FOC algorithm. The STEVAL-ESC001V1 reference design for electronic speed controllers is suitable for entry-level commercial drone designs and drives any three-phase brushless (or PMSM) motor powered by 6S LiPo battery packs, or any equivalent DC supply, up to 30 A peak current. The STEVAL-ESC001V1 allows designers to quickly develop their application thanks to a complete pre-configured firmware package (STSW-ESC001V1), implementing a sensorless Field Oriented Controlled algorithm with 3-shunt current reading, speed control, and full active braking. The reference design board can accept commands from a flight controller through PWM signals, but other communication interfaces like UART, CAN, and I²C are also available. Figure 4: A simplified circuit for DRV8305The reference includes a battery eliminator circuit working at 5V, an NTC sensor for temperature measurement and circuitry for overcurrent and overvoltage protection (OCP/OVP). The small form factor and current capability make this reference design suitable for electronic speed controllers on small and light unmanned aerial vehicles like professional drones. The STSW-ESC001V1 firmware/software package plus STM32 PMSM FOC software development kit – MC library allows optimizing the electronic speed controller design by acting on the field-oriented control parameters embedded in a STM32 MCU and exploit the ST motor profiler to retrieve the relevant motor parameters rapidly. The ST sensorless FOC algorithm fits any three-phase BLDC or PMSM motor application, ensuring longer flight times and optimal dynamic performance.ConclusionElectronic speed controllers for drones are essential to provide motor speed control in low and medium size commercial drones. One of the most widely used solution is based on a sensorless FOC technique for controlling 3-phase brushless motors. For a sensored solution, which achieves greater accuracy and better speed controller, a sensorless solution has the advantages of lower costs and reduced weight, two key factors in any low or medium size drone.>> This article was originally published on our sister site, Power Electronic News: “Electronic Speed Control for Drones.” Continue Reading Previous Toolkit supports automotive-quality AINext IoT device security: A path to standardization Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInMoreRedditTumblrPinterestWhatsAppSkypePocketTelegram Tags: Motors last_img read more

Wimbledon ditches plastic racket covers in sustainability drive

first_imgShare on Pinterest Share via Email Wimbledon Wimbledon 2019 … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading and supporting The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many new organisations, we have chosen an approach that allows us to keep our journalism accessible to all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford. But we need your ongoing support to keep working as we do.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism, to maintain our openness and to protect our precious independence. Every reader contribution, big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. The club also says it has upped the percentage of recycled content in food and drink packaging, with cups for strawberries and cream made from 70% recycled plastic.No waste from last year’s championships went to landfill, with non-recyclable waste used to produce electricity. But the AELTC wants to increase the proportion of waste entering recycling this year and to that end, it will have staff guiding the public to discard waste into appropriate bins, which will be more visible.The AELTC banned plastic straws last year and, in an attempt to reduce its environmental impact, signed up last month to the UN sports for climate action framework, which aims to encourage and assist sporting organisations to implement the Paris climate agreement.Unlike the plastic racket covers, the all-whites will not be disappearing from SW19 but they too are changing with the times, with some of the sport’s biggest names wearing a specially designed environmentally friendly range of clothing this Wimbledon fortnight.Angelique Kerber, Caroline Wozniacki, Garbiñe Muguruza, Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem and Stefanos Tsitsipas will all be wearing the Stella McCartney-designed Adidas kit. It is partially made from Parley ocean plastic, a material created from upcycled plastic waste intercepted from beaches and coastal communities before reaching the ocean, which is then converted to yarn.Mike Childs, the head of policy at Friends of the Earth, said: “It’s encouraging to see major sports venues like Wimbledon increasingly taking steps to reduce their environmental footprint – but most still have some way to go.“Sports stadiums must put environmental sustainability at the heart of their operations and do what they can to minimise their impact on the planet. This should include timetabled targets for slashing climate-wrecking emissions and becoming single-use plastic free.“The UK holds numerous world-class sports events every year; the venues that host them should be aiming for excellence off the pitch, court and fairway – as well as on it.” Since you’re here… Topics news Guardian Today: the headlines, the analysis, the debate – sent direct to you Share on LinkedIn Share on Messenger Read more Plastics Share on Twitter Support The Guardian Reuse this content Share on WhatsApp Share on Facebook Tennis It may not quite be a Wimbledon tradition along the lines of the all-white dress code but the sight of players discarding the plastic cover from a freshly strung racket is a familiar one at SW19.However, it will not be seen at this year’s championships, which begin on Monday – or in future Wimbledon tournaments – after a review of the use of plastics, and sustainability in general, by the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC).The removal of plastic bags from the player racket stringing operation means there will be 4,500 fewer plastic bags used at this year’s championships, according to the club.Awareness of – and concern at – the effects of plastic waste on oceans is growing, and players and racket stringers alike have dismissed the idea the covers have any practical purpose. Kevin Anderson, the losing men’s singles finalist last year, and the vice-president of the Association of Tennis Professionals player council, has voiced his desire to abolish them across the tour.Richard Lewis, the chief executive of the AELTC, said “We believe that Wimbledon, along with other major events, has a vital role to play in helping to protect the environment, today and for the future.”There will be other changes at this year’s tournament, including relating to plastic bottles, which were a talking point last year, with players including Johanna Konta and Kyle Edmund among those who expressed concern.While the AELTC is not going as far as Glastonbury, which has banned single-use plastic, or Oval cricket ground, which is looking to follow suit, it says the tournament sponsor Evian will launch its first 100% recycled and 100% recyclable water bottle at this year’s championships.last_img read more