Silicon Prairie News

2150_7a2b134379_small May 9, 2011 by Michael Stacy

Fargo As the chairman and CEO of Great Plains Software, Doug Burgum helped transform the company from a small software shop in Fargo, N.D. in the early 80s into a booming business that Microsoft bought for $1.1 billion in 2001. But what ended with a billion-dollar exit started as an idea that Burgum had to bet the farm — literally — to fund. "He had inherited some ground, inherited some land," said James Burgum, Doug Burgum’s nephew and one of his partners in Arthur Ventures, a venture capital firm they founded in 2008. "He mortgaged that land to invest in a software company." That wasn’t all. It took other creative funding to get Great Plains off the ground. …  read more

2205_bf95bec9e2_small May 9, 2011 by Geoff Wood

Ames Harry Potter. That was the first name called out when Google's PJ Anderson and Drew Rowny asked a room full of elementary school students to name a children's character. Anderson and Rowny traveled from Silicon Valley to Ames last week to honor Nathan Hidajat for being chosen as a regional prize winner in the Doodle 4 Google contest. They kicked off the ceremony with a demonstration of Google … read more

2213_81ef38057a_small May 9, 2011 by Michael Stacy

You're looking for events? On the Silicon Prairie? This week? Oh, boy. We really wish we could help you there, but … OK, clearly we're not fooling anyone here. You'll have to pardon the unconvincing poker face, but we're a tad excited about the event schedule on the Silicon Prairie this week. Perhaps you've heard us mention Big Omaha a time or 87 in recent weeks. Well, the conference is this week, and even if you didn't snag a ticket to the main event, there are parties open to the public on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights. …  read more

2209_2d8c137ac0_small May 8, 2011 by Michael Stacy

To whet your appetite for what's to come this week, we bring you a Sunday Video featuring one of the speakers in our loaded Big Omaha lineup, Marc Ecko. In this video, from a 2007 interview of Ecko conducted by Andrew Shapiro of GreenOrder, Inc. for CIT: Behind the Business, Ecko discusses the origins of the creativity and entrepreneurial spirit that have served as the building blocks for his business empire. It started, Ecko said, with the influence of his grandmother, who always encouraged … read more

May 7, 2011 by Dusty Davidson

Every day I comb through my Google Reader reading sites like Hacker News and others, and star articles that are especially interesting about startups, entrepreneurship and miscellany. read more

2200_91106f3fd1_small May 6, 2011 by Brittany Mascio

Omaha Next week's Big Omaha festivities are just around the corner, and we want to make sure you have all the details on the evening events, all of which are open to the public. We have a number of venues booked to accommodate the more than 600 attendees we have coming in from more than 20 states and three countries and the hundreds of local community members we anticipate will come out and add to the energy. We'll officially kick off Big Omaha 2011 … read more

2204_3e40f54361_small May 6, 2011 by Michael Stacy

Omaha It's beginning to look a lot like Big Omaha, and the buzz about the event on the Weekly Wrap-Up has reached a crescendo. In the final pre-Big Omaha WWU, which comes five days before the conference's opening party, Dusty Davidson and Jeff Slobotski look ahead to the big event and back over the week that was on the Silicon Prairie. … read more

2202_b3a77b6834_small May 6, 2011 by Geoff Wood

Des Moines The Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute's (GDMLI) quarterly Daybreak Leadership Breakfast series will be taking an in-depth look at the local entrepreneurial ecosystem when the group gathers at the Greater Des Moines Partnership Building (700 Locust) on May 19. The May breakfast, with the theme "Silicon Prairie: A Developing Entrepreneurial Ecosystem", will feature a panel of six entrepreneurs and startup enthusiasts from Des Moines … read more

The polls are open!

Through August 22, help us decide the winners of our inaugural Silicon Prairie Awards, which will recognize 12 companies and individuals. You can vote once per day per category.
Winners will be announced live on stage at
our August 30 event.