Lincoln Journal Star

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Virtual Incision keeps building, learning at new Innovation Campus home

A mosaic of framed photos depicting great American innovators and explorers -- the Wright brothers, Amelia Earhart, Nikola Tesla -- are a constant reminder of Virtual Incision's central ethos.

"We do things, we build things here," said Shane Farritor, the chief technology officer of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln spinoff that designs and manufactures small, lightweight surgical robots.

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Virtual Incision, the UNL spinoff co-founded by professor Shane Farritor, continues work to develop surgical robots in the group's office and lab at Nebraska Innovation Campus. Farritor said the company's target customers are rural hospitals, or as he calls them, "Nebraska hospitals."

Annual Hour of Code event hosts more than 800 at Innovation Campus

On the ground floor of the conference center at Innovation Campus, excited children sat at computers learning and practicing coding Saturday morning. On the floor above them, booths boasting virtual reality, 3D printers and remote-operated robots enthralled others.

More than 800 students and parents registered for the fifth annual Hour of Code event and the accompanying Interactive Tech Fair.

In the coding room, several parents said it was a unique opportunity for the kids to learn in exciting ways.

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Eight-year-old Callan Scribner completes tasks at a virtual-reality station at the Hour of Code event Saturday, December 8 at the Innovation Campus Conference Center.

Innovation Campus inviting companies to 'Rise' in new building

In a former life, the site of Nebraska Innovation Campus’ newest building was a copse of trees and vendor stalls near the eastern edge of the midway of State Fair Park.

A century later, the Rise Building near 21st Street and Transformation Drive is 80,000 square feet of bright and modern potential campus officials hope attract rising businesses to the up-and-coming research park.

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The Rise building near 21st Street and Transformation Drive is 80,000 square feet of bright and modern potential campus officials hope attract rising businesses to the up-and-coming research park.

Lincoln fire department turns to Innovation Studio to solve unique problem

The high-tech set of video laryngoscopes used by Lincoln Fire and Rescue to navigate a patient's vocal cords and other obstructions during intubation came with a set of low-tech carrying cases.

Although better than the denier fabric cases of the manual scopes, which are hospitable to bacteria, the new cases included holders built from paper pulp prone to disintegration after the instruments were disinfected.

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Max Wheeler, instructional designer at Nebraska Innovation Studio, shows a new 3D-printed case for a video laryngoscope to firefighter-paramedic Brennan Oliverius at Nebraska Innovation Campus.

Driverless shuttle arrives in Lincoln, will be tested this summer

From horses to trains to cars and airplanes to automated driverless vehicles, Lincoln residents continue to be pioneers, always looking for better ways to travel, Lincoln Mayor Chris Beutler said as he stood in front of a 15-passenger driverless shuttle that will be tested in the city this summer.

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Mayor Chris Beutler spoke during a news conference Wednesday at Nebraska Innovation Studio announcing the arrival of a driverless shuttle.

Lincoln grain elevator to be covered in art as part of new initiative

A grain elevator in north Lincoln is the first structure getting a makeover as part of a new initiative that seeks to beautify high-traffic parts of the city.

Local ecommerce firm Spreetail recently launched the program, called Elevate.

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The first project in Spreetail's new Elevate initiative will be to cover this grain elevator along Salt Creek Roadway near North 27th Street with 20-foot-by-60-foot billboard banners featuring submitted designs. The banners will be hung Aug. 31.

Spreetail planning expansion in Lincoln, Omaha

A Lincoln-based e-commerce company is branching out even as it plans to expand in its home city.

Spreetail CEO Brett Thome said Thursday that the company plans to open an office in Omaha later this year that will employ about 100 people.

Thome said the office, which will be located in the same building as Firespring, another Lincoln-based company, will be an extension of its Lincoln operation.

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Lincoln e-commerce company Spreetail is expanding into more space at Nebraska Innovation Campus and also is planning to open an office in Omaha later this year.

Innovation Campus relishing its newfound momentum

As Nebraska Innovation Campus was preparing to open a little more than three years ago, university and research park officials asked lawmakers and regents for patience.

Speaking to the Board of Regents in September 2014, then-Chancellor Harvey Perlman said the park’s biggest obstacle would be showing an activity level capable of sparking excitement from potential partners.

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Tetrad Property Group is constructing a $15.3 million building at Nebraska Innovation Campus for mixed-use space with small-and-mid-sized companies in mind.

New Innovation Campus building on track for September completion

Construction of a three-story, 80,000-square-foot modern office building at Nebraska Innovation Campus is “on time and on budget,” a project manager said.

The $15.3 million building, referred to internally by developers as Innovation Campus’s “Site Development Lease 3” by Tetrad Property Group, should be ready for tenants this fall, said Andy Widman.

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A $15.3 million building northeast of 21st Street and Transformation Drive on Innovation Campus should be ready for tenants this fall.

The other side of e-commerce: Spreetail to hire hundreds

E-commerce has become a dirty word in many circles, with people blaming online shopping for killing everything from the mom-and-pop corner store to their favorite mall chain.

So far this year, Radio Shack, Vanity, Family Christian Stores and Rue 21 have all either closed stores in Lincoln or announced plans to do so. And other chains, including Sears, J.C. Penney, Gordmans and Payless ShoeSource, have announced store closings elsewhere in Nebraska.

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Spreetail, an e-commerce company located at Nebraska Innovation Campus, is looking to hire 400 people over the next three years.

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