I'm most excited for the mountaineering / backcountry application in the short term but as critical mass develops in urban areas, there could be an interesting ecosystem that develops around this even without repeater functionality. Anything from people discovery like Tinder to b2c interaction like OrderAhead could build on top of a comm stack like this.
Given the volume of Peninsula-shuttled tech workers living within a mile of 16th and 24th st bart stations, I'm surprised to see those so low. Garbage in, garbage out from census data for transient, high-rental areas like the Mission, Noe, Castro, Bernal, Potrero. Indexing to rental rates in these areas is likely more reflective of wealth (via affordance as a proxy) http://sfist.com/2013/03/07/map_average_rent_for_1br_in_san_.... Awesome visualization though.
Within a mile doesn't matter - the OP is measuring by census tracts, which are quite small. For example, if you zoom in on this [http://projects.nytimes.com/census/2010/map], you'll see that the Mission BARTs' census tracts (201 and 209) extend to only within a couple of blocks from the stations, which seem from my daily commute to be the poorest and most run-down parts of that area. (The tracts are even small enough that there's a separate tract - 208 - for the stretch of Mission between the two BARTs.) While some of the tech workers I know do indeed live between Van Ness, Valencia, Cesar Chavez, and Market, a lot live a few blocks east or west of that line, e.g. on the west side of Valencia, or in the area between Folsom and Potrero.
A side question, though - is there a specific year when the shift of tech workers to SF picked up steam? I'm finding a wave of articles complaining about the Google shuttles in 2012-13 (about when I moved out to SF), but I don't have a good feel for how far along the process was at that point.
Based on rapidly increasing rents over the past 2 years in these neighborhoods, tech worker density has increased a lot. Anyone living in these areas in 2009-2010 will tell you that they'll never break their lease because market rents are 50-150% more than what they're paying due to strict rent controls.
Do you really believe the correct solution for these problems is to essentially make every financial startup a DBA of HUGE_BANK_X? That's one of the main reasons we don't see any innovation in the banking space where things are desperately underdeveloped.
A benevolent banking startup could do a lot of things to really help consumers, and they could do them EASILY with what we have in place now. They could implement reasonable and sustainable fee structures and they could set account transactions up such that fees are avoided instead of maximized. Big banking wants to keep things right where they are, of course; if they could possibly get a fee out of you based on your account's activity, they are going to do everything possible to make sure that things execute in such a way that that activity occurs: arbitrary holds and delays on checks, manipulation of transaction post orders, intentionally confusing account summaries ("account balance" and "available balance", and sometimes worse), nickel-and-dimed on fees for normal usage ("0.50 analysis fee", "5.00 new card fee", "5.00 maintenance fee", and soon, "5.00 debit card fee"), and many, many other things all collude to create a horrible experience for the end user.
"Front banks" like WePay, Braintree, or others, can't really do much about these processes and have to forward the BS received from the big banks on to their customers. You can create a pretty frontend, like BankSimple, but the reality is that you can't really make much of a change when you're subject to all of the same problems that your end users are already struggling to deal with every day.
I called them after talking to them at a conference. They said that they're not representing any technology companies. I asked about WePay; they said that was an usual exception.
From what I've heard they're totally dysfunctional internally. Also, every time you add a middleman, the price of your product goes up. We can charge 1.5% flat per transaction because there are no middlemen. We run the whole network.
I've been hurting since drop.io shut. This sounds like a good replacement.
EDIT: Functionality is quite different than drop.io and less anonymous in terms of sharing (though powerful for sharing with small groups or individuals). It would be great to get a private URL for each item shared, a la google docs.
But we also need a breakthrough in K-12 tech adoption.
n=1: my girlfriend is a math teacher at a better district in California. The only technology they provide her is a desktop with Windows 98.
So she uses her own mac to admin a tumblog filled with photos of assignments and answers to problems she uploads from her iphone. She uploads PDF's to google docs and 'shares with everyone'. She links to Khan academy videos since the school bans youtube and none of the district computers support flash.
Then her students use their home computers (if they have them) to consume this content. They're excited about it (most never heard of Khan before this) and it seems to be effective.
Back in the late 90's IBM installed a token-ring network at my high school. It was obsolete before they finished the project and the computers we had could barely get IE3 to load a web page.
So I hope this incubator does a lot not just to foster edu focused startups but to also get the right people in education to push for decent technology at schools.
Many friendly Linux User Group members volunteer to install and administer Ubuntu at public schools in the Bay Area. Ubuntu's a decent experience even with 256MB of ram, so schools can even reuse those 8-12 year old computers.
Free software's great for all kinds of technical, practical and cultural reasons. It's existed my whole life, but I didn't really feel its presence until using Debian in a research lab 4 years ago.
We don't all need to be RMS, but it's a worthy thing to think about for anyone who makes a living off free software.
It's simple. The US needs to stop subsidizing the bad calories (i.e. sweetners and hydrogenated oils) and enabling the treatments (i.e. dialysis, statins) that treat resulting diseases of civilization (i.e. diabetes, heart disease).