Howell firm named entrepreneurial finalist: Howell-based Ellens Technologies LLC has been named to the GEW 50, a list of companies vying for a trip to the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Liverpool, England in March. Ellens develops veterinary mobile applications currently for iPhone, iPad, and iTouch. They are currently developing a Veterinary Differential Diagnosis application. This application will assist veterinarians in the diagnosis of small animals by starting with a symptom and ruling out or eliminating possible causes while moving towards the root problem. To find a thorough listing of a differential diagnosis, a veterinarian must sift through multiple resources. These resources are limited to reference books, online websites, or colleague consultations. By making this information available on a smart phone or tablet device, the rule-out information becomes portable, diagnoses can be made quicker, and proper medical assistance can be rendered more expeditiously. In year three, Ellens Technologies plans to continuously expand our Veterinary Rule Out application as well as bring other useful professional veterinary apps to the vet market, selected from careful market research. They also plan to expand to additional platforms such as the Android. More at Startup Open is a featured event of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011, a Kauffman Foundation-led movement designed to encourage aspiring entrepreneurs to launch and build enterprises, revolutionize industries, and create jobs. Entrepreneurs who have a “startup moment” between GEW 2010 and GEW 2011 (Nov. 22, 2010 to Nov. 20, 2011) were eligible to take part. A “startup moment” is anything that can be interpreted as the company is “open for business,” such as a business being incorporated, a first sale completed or outside funding secured. One Startup Open winner will be receive an all-expenses paid trip to participate in the Global Entrepreneurship Congress and a second winner will receive one year of mentoring from Redbox founding members and serial entrepreneurs Michael DeLazzer and Biju Kulathaka. Applicants were judged on concept, growth projections, and knowledge of their industry.

SRT Solutions’ Chris Marinos Awarded Inaugural Microsoft F# MVP: SRT Solutions senior consultant Chris Marinos was recently awarded Most Valuable Professional (MVP) by Microsoft, specific to his work in F#. This is the first time Microsoft has designated F# excellence; Marinos’ F# MVP designation from Microsoft recognizes his leadership in the technical community. In addition to Marinos, SRT Solutions has four Microsoft MVPs on its team; Bill Wagner, Darrell Hawley, Patrick Steele and Dennis Burton are also Microsoft MVPs. There are only 4000 Microsoft MVPs worldwide. According to Microsoft, MVPs are a “select group of experts that represent the technical community’s best and brightest, and share a deep commitment to community and a willingness to help others.” To receive the Microsoft F# MVP Award, Marinos underwent a rigorous review process that included members of the MVP team and Microsoft product groups.  He was evaluated on his technical expertise as well as the quality, quantity, and level of impact of his contributions to the technical community. Marinos is an F#/ Functional programming expert who also creates software in C#, Python, Django, and Ruby on Rails.  Marinos graduated with honors from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science. More at


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