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Motor City Free Geek Reclaims Yesterday's Technology

There's an awful lot of discarded technology out there. There's got to be a better place for it than the trash, right? The Royal Oak non-profit Motor City Free Geeks marshals hundreds of tech volunteers to refurbish computers and laptops, outfitting them with free software and selling them to the public for hugely discounted prices. It's like the Circle of Life for technology.

To Compete or Non-Compete: Contracts That Make Michigan Less Competitive

States known for tech innovation and new economy success have shed their old school non-compete contracts to attract the best and brightest talent while fostering greater cross-pollination of ideas and inventions. So with all the noise Michigan is making about creating a 21st-century economy, why are we clinging to a 20th-century business practice?

Stories From Across the IMG Network

Issue Media Group publications cover "what's next" for urban centers. Check out the top stories in urban innovation from cities like Toronto, Memphis, Cleveland and Denver. 

Luke Jaden: Making It In Show Biz At 18

There are lots of high school kids with dreams of becoming a Hollywood director. But how many of them have started their own production company, attracted professional talent to their first 40-minute feature, and have a trio of projects currently in development? Oakland County teen Luke Jaden does.

Walkable, urban...Southgate? Rethinking Suburban Design

It's no secret that people and businesses are looking for communities with vibrant, walkable downtowns. What's a suburb dominated by shopping centers to do? Southgate has some innovative ideas about how they can thrive in the 21st century.

OpEd: There's More Than One Way to Bust Blight

Vacant property demolition often leaves cities with big holes in their landscapes -- and lost opportunties. Max Nussenbaum, Venture for America fellow and co-founder of Rebirth Realty, says restoration is key to Detroit's ongoing revitalization.

The Secret Life of Planterra

When it comes to buying plants you can be forgiven if florists and highway greenhouses are the first thing to come to mind. But let us open your mind (and eyes) to an entirely different level of horticultural design. Let us cultivate in you an appreciation for the entrepreneurial ambitions of Planterra, a West Bloomfield company that brings new meaning to organic design.

Three Common Sense Solutions for Local Transit (That Metro Detroit Isn't Doing)

Believe it or not, improving mobility in metro Detroit doesn't necessarily mean we have to blow billions of dollars on highway expansions. Metromode presents three fairly inexpensive ideas for how to improve our struggling transportation system.

SellerNation Aims to Revolutionize Real Estate Sales

When it comes to selling a house you know the drill: real estate agent, open houses, price adjustments, weeks - sometimes months - of showings and negotiations. If SellerNation has its way, things will change for the better. And given the success the Southfield-based company has had so far, that change might not be far off.

OpEd: Why Oakland County Needs More Global Firms

As part of its efforts to attract more firms to the region over the last several years, Oakland County has been venturing way beyond its backyard. Irene Spanos, director of the Oakland County Dept. of Economic Development & Community Affairs, explains why the county needs to include the entire world within its 908-square-mile boundary.

Cool Jobs: Brian Pawlik, Walkability Guru

Brian Pawlik knows what makes a community more walkable and why you should care. Whether it's pedestrian routes, bike paths or 'complete streets,' this SEMCOG planner is preaching the gospel of carless alternatives.

No Mistake By the Lake: What Metro Detroit Can Learn from Cleveland's BRT System

Bus rapid transit, which is less expensive and more flexible than light or heavy rail options, has been bandied about as a viable means for mass transit in Detroit. Matthew Lewis went south of the Michigan border to check out one of the premier systems in the nation. 

Making It in the Midnight Hour

Quick, name a locally created and produced television show that isn't a news program. Not so easy, is it? As the number of cable channels swells, it's ironic that local content dwindles. For six years now, Lee Martin's The Midnight Hour has proven itself the exception to that rule, producing a once-a-month suspense anthology that uses a whole lot of homegrown talent..

Urbanizing Metro Detroit's Suburbia

The lines between suburban and urban are finally blurring in some Metro Detroit communities. And none too soon. Though our region ranks last in terms of urban revitalization among the 25 largest metros, things are looking up. "You're moving in the right direction," says Christopher Leinberger, senior fellow at The Brookings Institution.

OpEd: Local Governments Need More Millennial Leaders

It appears local government bodies aren't reflecting the faces of their residents. Millennials are 23% of the area's population, yet hold only 6% of local board and commission seats. Emily Thompson, program manager for the Michigan Suburbs Alliance, opines on the need for change, and how the new On Board database can help.
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