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Meet the startup that's helping Uber and Spotify see into the future

Mixpanel CEO Suhail Doshi thinks that if startup founders want their next big idea, they should read more science fiction books. 

Look at Elon Musk, he says: Planning Mars expeditions? Building electric cars?

"Those are all sci-fi book things," Doshi says.

Today, Mixpanel is unveiling its own sci-fi inspired product: A feature that will let its customers — including companies like Uber and Spotify — see into the future. 

Mixpanel, a data analytics company founded in 2009 and funded by the likes of Y Combinator, Andreessen Horowitz, and PayPal co-founder Max Levchin, was already most of the way there.

"The best prediction of the future is the past," Doshi says.

Predicting the future

Why executives are fleeing $500 million startup Rent the Runway

In the last two months, Rent the Runway has lost four top executives.

The New York startup, which rents formal dresses and accessories to users for affordable prices, recently lost chief technical officer Camille Fournier and chief creative officer Linda Honan, in addition to its head of partnerships and president.

More executives have left in the past year, too, including the company's CFO, head of people and talent, and its COO.

On Tuesday morning, Fortune's Daniel Roberts published a report after speaking with Rent the Runway's former employees, investors, and CEO. The article concluded that Rent the Runway's problems with turnover stem primarily from a hostile corporate culture. 


How to use Robinhood, the popular app that lets you trade stocks without paying any fees

Robinhood is an app built around one single promise: no-fee stock trading. 

Robinhood launched in December 2014 and quickly became a favorite among younger people looking to invest without paying $7 per trade. Since its launch, Robinhood has amassed hundreds of thousands of users, and facilitated over $1 billion in trades, according to TechCrunch

The app itself is stylish and simple, a big part of why it won an Apple Design Award. It makes stock trading cheap, intuitive, and mobile.  

This past week, I tested out the app with a nominal amount of cash (Business Insider journalists are forbidden from playing the market by policy — so I'm donating the $1.26 I made to charity). It's ease of use was refreshing, and the only complaint I had was lag times while moving money around. 


Google Maps displayed the location of the Paris tragedy when people searched for 'Daesh' (GOOG)

Up until Monday, when a user searched for 'daesh,' Google Maps displayed the Bataclan theater in Paris, the site where three gunman terrorized people at an Eagles of Death Metal concert, Bild reported.

"Daesh," is an abbreviation for stands for al-Dawla al-Islamiya fi al-Iraq wa al-Sham, the Arabic name for the Islamic State (aka ISIS, ISIL).

Here's what users found when they typed in 'daesh':

And here's what people saw when they typed in the French word for "bomb":

 


Watch two kids hilariously try to figure out how a Walkman works

Walkmans are, believe it or not, already slipping out of our cultural memory.

When one mom found an old Walkman and cassette tapes from the 80s, she decided to see if her kids could make any sense of them. The video below is evidence that they had many amusing difficulties even understanding how the thing actually worked.

They do finally figure it out, but not before puzzling over the ribbon ("Definitely don't pull the ribbon"), and fumbling around various ways the tape should go into the player.

See the video below:

 


Look at how Apple has sucked up all the profits in smartphones (AAPL)

Apple now makes 94% of the profits in the smartphone industry, according to recent research by Canacord.

This historical chart compiled by Statista shows how quickly and utterly Apple has dominated the smartphone market. Samsung is now the only other major handset company earning significant profits from smartphones.


Some of the fastest meteors all year are falling in large numbers tonight — here's how to watch

The moon will be setting in the early evening hours on Tuesday, which is good news for viewers because it means dark skies for the Leonid meteor shower.

The Leonid meteor shower happens every November, and there's always a peak time when we can see the most meteors pummeling our atmosphere and lighting up the night sky.

That opportune time will happen in the wee hours between midnight and dawn of Wednesday morning, according to Earthsky.org.

During that time, observers will be treated to between 10 to 15 meteors per hour, or about one every 5 or so minutes.

If the sky is cloudy or you're not a morning person — or a night person, depending on how you look at it — you can still watch the meteor shower.

The online observatory


Microsoft doubled down on security — and it worked (MSFT)

Microsoft has increased its focus on information security, and the strategy seems to be working.

Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, gave a speech at the Government Security Forum in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, and it focused on reassuring enterprise clients that Windows 10, Azure, and other Microsoft services are better than those from Amazon or Google.

Nadella laid out the various security improvements that Windows 10 and Azure users can expect when they upgrade, including Windows Hello, Passport, and Device Guard. All three put together offer better protection against hackers, by mitigating the need for passwords, and malware attacks, two key areas of annoyance for big businesses.

"[Microsoft have] changed themselves from worst in class to the best in class," Mikko Hypponen, the chief research officer for the security firm F-Secure,


Angie's List turns down IAC's second offer to buy it — this time for $512 million

It looks like a second attempt by IAC to buy Angie’s List wasn’t a match.

In an announcement in BusinessWire, Angie’s List, the online marketplace and reviews site for independent contractors, revealed it had been approached earlier this month by IAC — who owns Tinder — to buy the company at $8.75 per share, a $512 million offer. The Angie's List board of directors has formally and unanimously decided to turn down the offer, however.


Startups and GCHQ are joining forces in the fight against terrorist organisations like ISIS

The government is setting up a new hub for Britain's cybersecurity startups next to spy agency GCHQ in Cheltenham as part of its National Cyber Security Plan, which aims to counter terrorist groups like ISIS (also known as Islamic State) and other online criminals.

The Cyber Innovation Centre, announced by Chancellor George Osborne today during a speech at GCHQ — Britain's "listening post" — will house and support security-focused startups "in their early months."

Osborne believes the centre is necessary if the UK is to build companies that can help protect the public, the government and private sector organisations.