View Blog Posts About: Started in San Diego

Stealth Boat Lurking in San Diego Bay

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Imagine you are enjoying a nice afternoon on San Diego Bay. A friend has invited you out on their sailboat where you close your eyes to capture the full essence of breathing in the fresh air from light breezes and bask in the warm glow of the sun.

You open up your eyes for a brief moment to enjoy the views of our beautiful city skyline when all of a sudden you see something that reminds you of a B-2 Stealth Bomber. Except, this thing is cruising along San Diego Bay. It’s got a wide body without much vertical height and is full of sharp angles. As you stare at it, you wonder what future civilization it came. It comes whizzing past you at 50 knots (58 mph) and you expect to be capsized in its wake but then realize there is no wake at all.

If you’ve had this experience or plan to be out on the San Diego Bay anytime soon, let me introduce you to the Stiletto.

Stiletto Boat photo from M Ship Company

Stiletto Boat photo from M Ship Company

Designed by the M Ship Company of San Diego, the Stiletto is making waves around the world figuratively, but not literally. The boat uses a revolutionary design called an M Hull, named for the way it looks. Outer skirts capture the wake caused by the main hull and use it to its advantage for speed and balance.

As a prototype in 2006, Time Magazine named it one of the best inventions of the year. Built out of carbon fiber, this sturdy craft can basically fly across water and turn on a dime.

Just last month, the Department of Defense used the Stiletto as a demonstration unit during a drug interdiction deployment in the Atlantic Ocean. This was unfortunate for a few drug smugglers seen on a go-fast boat off of the Florida Coast. Accustomed to outspeeding the authorities, these drug smugglers were in for a little surprise. Take a look at the imposing picture of the Stiletto above and imagine it chasing you down in a cigarette boat for two hours. The smugglers thought they finally reached safety in shallow waters where they thought the imposing Stiletto would not be able to navigate. Again, fortune was not on their side. The Stiletto’s hull only extends 2.5 feet below the surface of the water and was able to maintain pursuit.

Fortunately for us, those drug smugglers are now behind bars.

So, keep your eyes out on San Diego Bay for this state-of-the-art, stealth-looking boat. Not only are they designed and built in San Diego but you will also see the Navy Seals using them for their missions.

Here is a profile of the Stiletto. You can also check out pictures and videos on the web page for the Stiletto.

Solana Beach Company Serves Up Healthy Snacks to Kids Nationwide

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Do you remember the days in school when you would hit up the Coke machine for a cool, refreshing drink (or to keep yourself awake in class) and then the snack machine for a Twinkie or a box of mini-chocolate donuts (especially when the cafeteria options that day stunk)?  Snacking on junk food and sugary drinks didn’t seem to matter all that much to our health or physical looks.  We were lucky not to have the internet or 200 channels of TV.  Instead, we were outside running around until we could barely see the end of our nose and our parents were yelling for the umpteenth time that it was time to get inside and wash up.  All of that excercise kept us in great shape.

Boy how times have changed.  Kids nowawdays sit inside a lot more than we did.  They flip through hundreds of TV channels, chat online, play video games, and even watch the gardener take care of the yard, and the maid clean up the bathroom.  (Whatever happened to chores; another activity that always kept us active?)

Our new sedate lifestyles can no longer cover up the effects of sugary drinks, Twinkies, and donuts.  The government and other organizations have been encouraging kids to become more active like we were in our school days but it just isn’t happening.  There are just too many distractions that keep kids from playing outside until mom or dad pulled them by the collar into the house.

The lastest effort to combat poor health and obesity is through a better diet.  Out go the Coke machines and the junk food vending options and in come the flavored waters and vegetable chips.

If you been reading this blog, it’s no surprise that a San Diego company is once again leading the way on creating a healthier America.

YoNaturals, a Solana Beach company, has taken the lead to bring healthy food vending machines to schools across America.  The company has been in business for two years and the accolades from school administrators are already pouring in.

YoNaturals has now launched a new program with its web site called schoolhealthyvending.com.  The new program makes it easy for schools to use the healthy vending machines as fundraisers. I can tell you from personal experience that this is a great idea.  I was in charge of running the Coke machines in school as a class president.  It was such an awesome money maker that I started peddling Otis Spunkmeyer Cookies for the school business club. Yes, I’m guilty of pushing junk food but you’ll have to admit, it was during a time when it didn’t seem to matter since we were so active as kids and burned off all the calories.

If you take a look at the YoNaturals snack and drink choices for their vending machines, I think you’ll agree with me that healthier snacking will become attractive to kids.  If I were still in school, I would certainly push these healthier options. I’m confident they would bring in just as much money and with what we know now, I wouldn’t feel as guilty pushing them.

Will these healthy snack options finally tackle the problem of childhood obesity?  I think they are something that will put us in the right direction but there’s nothing better than running around and staying active like in the good-ole-days.

Nationally Recognized Privacy Rights Group based in San Diego

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The explosion of information available online has resulted in a struggle to protect privacy rights of individuals.  New technology is introduced each day that allows government, business, organizations, and even other individuals to explore a person’s history and track personal habits.

Generally, the intentions are good.  For example, companies want to learn the demographics of their customers so they can better identify what type of person is attracted to their product.  This knowledge allows them to adjust their marketing campaign to reach only the types of people who will be most interested in their product.  In another example, web sites want to learn which pages people are visiting on their site so they can figure out which article topics are popular and which are not. This knowledge allows them to provide more relevant articles to their readers.

With anything ‘good’, there is always a ‘bad side’ that comes with it.  Those without good intentions could use technology to pry too much into people’s lives.  In addition, there is the argument of where the line should be drawn on what personal information being collected is reasonable and what is not.

The people who create the new technologies are most interested in pushing their skills to create the next cool capability.  Many who use the technology are most interested in improving the marketing of their product or service.  Neither of these groups is focused on determining the appropriate line for what’s a reasonable gathering of personal information.  Each company, government agency, or organization using the technology will have a different definition on what is appropriate.

This is where the nonprofit, consumer information and advocacy organization Privacy Rights Clearinghouse steps in.  They focus on individual privacy.  They are the ones who will push back when a new technology or the use of a technology appears to have gone too far.  They are the ones who help balance the line of what is reasonable and what is not.

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse based near Balboa Park has developed a national reputation for representing consumer privacy rights.  They testify before legislators and government agencies.  You will see the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse quoted on nearly a daily basis both online, in print, and on TV across the country.

The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse provides great resources for consumers, including fact sheets on such topics as dealing with credit scores, junk mail, medical records, and identity theft.

You can read more about the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse and its San Diego founder Beth Givens.

San Diego Company Seeks Help to Update Nationally Recognized Jingle

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Do you remember watching Chicken of the Sea commercials when growing up?  If your memory is starting to fail you, maybe you can jog it by listening to their catchy jingle. Its lyrics “Ask any mermaid you happen to see, what’s the best tuna? Chicken of the Sea!” and its mermaid logo have made Chicken of the Sea one of the most recognized brands in America.

The purveyor of tuna fish and other seafood has been based in University City and then Mira Mesa in recent years. The company made headlines a couple years back when Jessica Simpson got confused during a taping of her reality TV show wondering if there was chicken or tuna in a can of Chicken of the Sea.  As part of the resulting hoopla, she ended up making her way down to a Carmel Valley hotel to meet company employees and sing the famous jingle.

Chicken of the Sea just announced they are hosting a contest to see who can come up with the best new rendition of their famous lyrics.  If you are one of the first 100 to respond with a 30 – 90 second jingle, you’ll receive an iPod Shuffle.  The Grand Prize Winner will receive a behind-the-scenes tour, celebrity style, of Hollywood and a truckload of seafood for their local Second Harvest food bank. Get all of the details at the Mermaid Jingle Jam.

So, San Diegans, can you come up with the best jingle as part of a local company’s national contest?

Poway Company Makes Tailgating BBQ’s a Cinch

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Football training camps are underway.  The regular season is almost here.  Football fans are getting ready by buying tailgate grills from a Poway company, which Reader’s Digest recently said is one of the Top 100 New Discoveries.

Freedom Grills, which owns the registered trademark for “The Official Grill of Tailgating”, sells BBQ Grills that attach to the back hitch of your SUV or Pick-up Truck.  One of the tailgating grills is small enough not to require towing and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times.

However, if you are one who likes to make a statement, you should check out their $250,000 World’s Most Extreme Tailgating Vehicle.

So, the next time you come across one of these cool grills as you peruse the tailgate parties at Qualcomm Stadium, or even at the local park or campground, know that it is a San Diego company that’s helped to redefine the tailgate party.

San Diego Home to Nation’s First Ethanol Station

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The LA Times brought attention this weekend to Pearson Fuels on El Cajon Boulevard. Pearson Fuels’ claim to fame comes from offering the nations first ethanol pump in 2003 along with a propane pump, two types of natural gas pumps, biodiesel, and six electric car charging bays. This one-of-a-kind alternative gas station is co-owned by Mike Lewis and Pearson Ford. Learn more about Pearson Fuels and Mike Lewis’s efforts to establish more alternative fuel stations across California from this weekend’s LA Times article.

If you own a vehicle that runs on alternative fuel, you can visit Pearson Fuels at 4067 El Cajon Blvd, just east of the I-15. Here are the directions to Pearson Fuels from Google Maps.