Yik Yak shuts down after Square paid $1 million for its engineers

 Yik Yak co-founders Tyler Droll and Brooks Buffington published a farewell note to users on Friday, announcing they would shut down their once-popular anonymous social network this week. The app allowed people to connect with other users within a certain radius, and was widely marketed in and used on college campuses. Read More

Everfi raises $190 million to teach life skills and touchy subjects online

 Everfi Inc. has raised $190 million in Series D funding to teach students online the life skills and touchy subject matter that they never learned in school. A sampling of courses offered by Everfi range from “Harassment Prevention Training” for the workforce, to “Alcohol EDU” for college students and “Vault Understanding Money” for fourth-, fifth- and… Read More

Desktop Metal reveals how its 3D printers rapidly churn out metal objects

 Today, Desktop Metal revealed pricing and other details for its 3D printers, which can make objects out of hundreds of different alloys including steel, aluminum, titanium and copper. In terms of quality, the parts produced by Desktop Metal systems compare to injection-molded items, says the startup’s CEO and cofounder Ric Fulop. While metal 3D printers have been around for decades… Read More

Why tech workers showed up to March for Science

 Science itself may be non-partisan. But the March for Science this weekend simply couldn’t be. Demonstrators turned out in an estimated 600 cities around the world to rally for science and its role in policy-making, many tech workers among them. The march was organized after the Trump administration proposed and began to implement steep budget cuts to federal science agencies in the… Read More

PowerRay is an underwater drone for filmmakers or fishermen

 The creator of the PowerEgg, an ovoid flying robot, has begun accepting orders for its newest creation, a submersible camera drone for home use. Dubbed the PowerRay, the waterproof device can find, attract and record fish. It operates at a depth of 30 meters, or about 98 feet, for up to four hours at a time. It is suitable for use in fresh-, salt-or chlorinated-water. The PowerRay garnered… Read More

The winner of the meal kit market won’t be a meal kit company at all

 Now, meal kit companies are facing an onslaught of competition from newcomers and big food brands alike. Turning a profit has proven elusive. And somewhat embarrassingly, it looks like meal kit companies need to emulate the brick-and-mortar groceries and online retailers they once criticized for overwhelming shoppers with choices. To go truly mainstream, they need to diversify their… Read More

Robot tutor Musio makes its retail debut in Japan

 A cute, robotic language tutor called Musio, has made it from crowdfunding campaign to full-fledged product with a debut in stores this week in Japan. Priced at JPY 98,000 (about US $900), Musio is now sold online through SoftBank’s marketplace and Amazon Japan, and through a handful of brick-and-mortars stores. Read More

Luminar reveals sensors that could make self-driving cars safer than human

 Cameras help autonomous vehicles read street signs and the color of traffic lights. But LiDARs, aka light detection and ranging systems, do the important work of sensing and helping cars avoid obstacles, whether that’s a fallen tree, drunk driver, or a child running out into the road. Now, a startup called Luminar Technologies Inc., is unveiling a high-resolution LiDAR sensor that was… Read More

Marble and Yelp Eat24 start robot food delivery in San Francisco

 Rules governing the use of food delivery robots remain to be seen across the US. But major food businesses are investigating the possibilities already. In the latest deal, Yelp Eat24 has begun testing delivery by robot in partnership with Marble in select San Francisco neighborhoods. TechCrunch spied Marble’s delivery robots, stickered with a Yelp Eat24 logo, earlier this month. But… Read More

A $150 million fund, The Engine, will back startups others find ‘too hard’

 A fund and accelerator for advanced technology startups, The Engine, closed its debut fund at a robust $150 million this week, according to its President, CEO and Managing Partner Katie Rae. Last year, TechCrunch reported that MIT was investing $25 million into The Engine, becoming the anchor LP for the fund. While The Engine is not owned and operated by the private, research university, it… Read More