Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Three startups win Refresh Miami’s ‘demo day’

Sept. 2, 2014, 3:22 p.m., Posted by Carolina Wilson

The crowd at Miami Dade College's Wolfson Campus for Refresh Miami's 'demo day'. Photo by Carolina Wilson.

Over 400 people gathered at Miami Dade College’s Wolfson Campus as ten local startups competed for prizes in a pitch-style competition Thursday.

Glip, a modern business messaging and productivity platform, took first place in Refresh Miami’s "demo night”. Glip allows users to plan, share and organize their work in a convenient and easy-to-use mobile/tablet platform or web browser. CEO and founder Peter Pezaris said the company has had success since its 2012 inception, already serving thousands of companies.

“We built Glip because we know that 36 percent of the average information worker’s time is wasted everyday,” Pezaris said, citing an MIT study showing that 50 percent of the difference between low-performing and high-performing teams is the quality of communication.

So, Glip takes all of the communication and management tools a business needs, and integrates them into one service on one screen including: shared calendars, instant messaging, distributed task and project management, file sharing and video conferencing.

Share your inspiration for Knight News Challenge: Libraries

Sept. 2, 2014, 2 p.m., Posted by John Bracken

Photo by New Calgary Central Library on Flickr. 

“How might we leverage libraries as a platform to build more knowledgeable communities?” That’s the question we’ll be asking you to help answer in the next Knight News Challenge.

As we mentioned last week, we’ll open the challenge Wednesday, Sept. 10. As part of the buildup, we’re asking you to talk to us about what inspires you about libraries, about what problems and opportunities you would like to see addressed through the News Challenge.

For our part, we see three key assets of libraries that we hope to build upon: librarians, the highly trained human capital that specializes in finding and sharing information; the public trust and goodwill that libraries have built as trusted institutions; and libraries themselves, the physical assets where people can safely gather with their neighbors.

The challenge will be open to anyone from anywhere, but our primary focus is on U.S.-based library projects.

Does placemaking help democracy?

Aug. 29, 2014, 10 a.m., Posted by Andrew Sherry

Above: Study group members discuss ideas to take home from Copenhagen as a fly fisherman practices casting. Credit: Torbjörn Larsson/Knight Foundation.

Planning, designing and managing public spaces with human beings squarely at the center of the picture produces remarkably livable cities and economic growth. Does it also strengthen democracy by bringing people together to address shared issues?

Related Links

"Study tour gets street-level view of how Copenhagen reinvented itself" by Andrew Sherry on Aug. 25 in Knight Blog

It’s an important question for Knight Foundation, which supports informed and engaged communities because we believe they help democracy to thrive. Most city planners, architects and others involved in placemaking tend to speak primarily in practical terms, though: pedestrian-friendly streetscapes, grids of bike paths, programming in parks.

Riccardo Marini, a director of Gehl Architects, spoke for a full morning on the practicalities of placemaking projects to more than 30 people on a late August study tour to Copenhagen organized by 8-80 Cities and sponsored by Knight. But when pressed to say what was at the core of the work, he didn’t hesitate.