Carnegie Mellon Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Selects Newest Innovation Corps Teams

Carnegie Mellon University’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) has announced the 19 young companies that make up the 2016 cohort for its Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Site.

The objective of the I-Corps program is to help Carnegie Mellon entrepreneurs build their entrepreneurial skills, and interact with customers in an agile way to transition research out of the lab and into the commercial market. The program is supported by a three-year, $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation and is one of CIE’s many initiatives to help fledgling companies grow and build relationships with partners in the business community.

“The Carnegie Mellon I-Corps Site is a great way for faculty, student, and alumni entrepreneurs to test-drive their young companies,” said Emily Stark, associate director of the CIE and co-PI of the I-Corps Site.

“This spring we have an impressive new cohort of teams with innovations ranging from mobile robotic solutions for vertical farming to a computer security defense system to an enhanced e-book platform.”

The spring 2016 teams include:

  • Aero Laboratories provides automated asset management through intelligent data acquisitions and drone analytics;
  • Biohybrid Solutions specializes in the merged field of proteins and polymers, working on both a R&D company and direct product sales;
  • ComYoot is a social ride sharing app that changes how people belonging to similar communities travel, making traveling between and within cities ubiquitous and hassle free;
  • Dranimate creates live animations from drawings and photographs, and functions as both a stand-alone mobile app and a desktop software suite;
  • EAGLE Matrix provides data science solutions for complex interactive systems, such as those found in games and computer-assisted learning environments, and has a number of unique metrics that focus on social network analysis;
  • e. e. books is developing software that enables writers to easily create e-books and add media (e.g. sound, interactivity, animation, dynamic footnotes) for every electronic reading device;
  • Glu10, pronounced gluten, is a fast and reliable gluten-sensing platform for people with gluten intolerance and celiac disease, and others;
  • KOPO, LLC, provides low-cost, sustainable solutions for water disinfection and transport in the developing world. Its patent-pending plastic jug (the Kopo Can) uses passive solar energy to disinfect dirty water with UV and heat;
  • MechaSpark provides online and offline STEM education using learn-by-doing education. It also curates associated physical components and supplies to create a multimedia and multimodal environment, enhancing information absorption and retention;
  • MGBFramework develops and supports a novel, powerful and easy-to-use analytical suite for temporal data analytics;
  • NAYAN, named after the Sanskrit word for “eyes,” is a universally compatible sensor add-on for walkers that aids in gait training by remotely transmitting relevant user data to physical therapists through a mobile app;
  • RoBotany is automating the commercial vertical farming industry by creating mobile robotic solutions that increase labor efficiency by 25%, double crop output and provide an unprecedented level of data collection to improve farm operations;
  • THERE is developing a sensor mesh for the interior and exterior linings of a purse that will indicate if items tagged with RFID sensors are present inside;
  • Visionary Machines, LLC, is developing a vision-based autonomous mobile manipulator (robot) for the advanced high school market;
  • Wav Diagnostics is developing a microfluidic device in a PMMA prism to separate cells by size, shape and other physical characteristics;
  • Whisker uses geo-location to provide dog owners the ability to search services such as dog sitting, boarding or walking by a fellow dog owners in the area;
  • Whitebox is working on a computer security defense system that protects security-sensitive programs by securing them in a parallel, relatively small operating system running on-demand;
  • and Who’s Hiring Me aims to streamline the outdated recruiting industry by providing a smooth and holistic experience for anyone looking for internships or jobs.

“I am excited by the dynamic entrepreneurial community that is being created on campus by our NSF I-Corps Site program,” said Lenore Blum, the principal investigator for the I-Corps Site, co-director of CIE and professor of computer science. “The 19 incoming teams join our existing cohort of 46 I-Corps teams and will benefit from the sharing of experiences and expertise as well as the multiple opportunities and programs offered by the CIE.”

In addition to Stark, the program’s co-PIs include David Mawhinney, co-director of the CIE, executive director of the Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship, and associate teaching professor of entrepreneurship; Robert Dammon, dean of the Tepper School of Business; and Robert Wooldridge, director of the Center for Technology Transfer and Enterprise Creation.