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Here's what it's like to fly on Alaska Airlines, which just bought Virgin America for $2.6 billion


alaska airlines

Diehard Virgin America fans had their hopes dashed on December 14, when Alaska Airlines announced it closed a deal to acquire the Richard Branson-founded airline for $2.6 billion.

The newly merged carrier will create the fifth largest airline in the US with 40 million customers, Business Insider reported.

When Alaska Airlines made the bid to buy its rival in April, loyal Virgin customers freaked out about the merger on social media. Virgin would lose its "cool factor," they worried. One fan told The New York Times leaving Virgin for Alaska was like "giving up your sexy imported sports car for a reliable but unsexy sedan."

It's unclear what parts of the Virgin brand will survive, but Alaska Air confirmed this week that there will be no immediate changes to Virgin's "onboard product or experience."

On a trip from San Francisco to Seattle in April, I flew Alaska Airlines. Here's what it was like.

SEE ALSO: Meet America's 5th largest airline: The newly-merged Alaska Air and Virgin America

It was my first time flying Alaska Airlines.

I checked in at the kiosk and had to sign in twice to print a luggage tag and to print a boarding pass.

When I boarded the plane, a yellowish hue filled the cabin. I missed Virgin's mood lighting.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Ivanka Trump has listed one of her New York City condos for $4.1 million



Jewelry isn't the only thing Ivanka Trump is hawking. According to city records, the soon-to-be First Daughter has listed an apartment at 502 Park Avenue (a Trump building) for $4.1 million.

Trump purchased the condo in 2004 for $1.5 million, and listed it for a day in 2011. She later transferred it to an LLC that she controls in 2015. The 1,549-square-foot apartment has two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a corner living and dining room and a chef's kitchen.

The listing notes that the unit is a sponsor unit (meaning that it is being sold directly by the developer).


Trump also owns a penthouse in the building, which she also bought in 2011 for a rumored $16 million. That unit does appear to be listed at this time. Trump's husband, developer Jared Kushner, told the Wall Street Journal earlier this year that he and Ivanka might purchase a unit at the Puck Building, which he owns, and rumors were swirling earlier this month that the couple was house hunting for a home in D.C. to be closer to the White House.


Read the original story on Luxury Listings NYC. Copyright 2016.


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SEE ALSO: Trump's proposed tariff could cause a major problem for Ivanka's $100 million business

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NOW WATCH: Why Ivanka can't serve in a Trump cabinet

Nike made a $720 pair of futuristic sneakers that can lace themselves up — here's what they're like to wear (NKE)


Nike HyperAdapt 1.0

They're slick, stylish, and everybody wants them. Yep, it's a new Nike shoe.

But the HyperAdapt 1.0 isn't an ordinary sneaker. It's the first release with Nike's new adaptive lacing technology, first predicted in a shoe dubbed the Nike Mag in "Back to the Future II."

With science fiction as its guide, Nike set out to create a real-life shoe that worked similarly, where you can just slip your foot in your shoe, and it tightens automatically — no need to lace it.

Nike gave me the opportunity to try out the new technology with a hands-on experience in their Soho VIP space. In this instance, truth isn't stranger than fiction.

First impressions were positive. The shoe's style is subtle but futuristic. It doesn't look far out of step with other Nike designs, but it maintains a futuristic air. It's also just as light as you would expect a running shoe to be.

I have to admit, I was nervous before trying it. For ostensibly no reason, I had horrible visions that the shoe would malfunction and mangle my foot, or just plain not work. The technology, Nike admits, is still in its earliest iteration: 1.0. And indeed, the first shoe I tried did not work.

I slipped my foot in to no effect, wiggling it around inside to the confusion of the Nike experience associate helping me. Two red blinking lights told us what the problem was: low battery.

Nike HyperAdapt

When the shoe is low on battery, it doesn't shut off completely. It warns the user that it should use the charging puck, which attaches magnetically to the bottom. Nike quotes a charging time of about three hours, and one charge will last about two weeks depending on how often they're used.

When you do get a shoe that works, the sensation is both surprising and just a little bit fun. Lights flash, and the shoe is far from quiet. The motor — activated by the sensors that move the wire that's tucked behind the laces — makes a satisfying mechanical sound as the shoe tightens around your appendage, sensing where your foot is for a snug fit. You can't help but smile the first time.

The whole process takes about 10 seconds, including shoving your foot into the below-average-sized hole of the shoe. The fit can be adjusted using buttons on the side of the shoe near the laces, which are a little difficult to find under the fabric, but are effective.

With the shoe on, it felt exactly like a normal sports shoe. I felt I could run, jump, and have full movement. They were also just as comfortable as a normal shoe, if not more so.

The shoe is designed with training and, to a lesser extent, running, in mind. Nike told me they tested it with a wide variety of sports, including basketball. The shoe is not considered water-resistant or waterproof, but the mechanism isn't so fragile that stepping in a shallow puddle will fry it.

Taking the shoe off is not quite as quick. You have to first find the button that loosens the fit, and then hold it for a few seconds until you can slide your foot out. 


Nike HyperAdapt 1.0 \

There's no mistaking it: the shoes do exactly what they purport to — and they do it fantastically well. Though their function is limited, and the $720 price is out of reach for most, the shoes offer a peek into what might be possible in the future. Apart from the obvious time benefit, I could see this being useful for individuals who find it difficult or impossible to tie a regular shoelace.

Nike CEO Mark Parker said this year that self-lacing shoes will be as big and important as self-driving cars in a few years. Time will tell if that bears out. But if this first iteration is anything to go by, the future looks pretty bright.

SEE ALSO: Why the sneaker wars are being waged on the streets of New York City

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After interviewing over 100 successful people, Tim Ferriss says a passage from a 1922 novel captures the approach every high performer takes


tim ferriss

Since starting his podcast in 2014, bestselling author Tim Ferriss has interviewed well over 100 highly successful people, from Navy SEALs to billionaire entrepreneurs.

He uses his interviews to pick apart the, as he puts it, "tactics, routines, and habits," that have brought these subjects to the tops of their fields. He's collected his favorite lessons from these discussions, along with a few new ones, in his book "Tools of Titans."

Ferriss recently stopped by Business Insider's New York office for a Facebook Live Q&A, and explained that there is a passage in Herman Hesse's 1922 novel "Siddhartha" that offers a suitable lens for all of the "tools" he shares in his book.

The novel "Siddhartha" tells the story of a young monk's quest for enlightenment (the Buddha narrative). Four of Ferriss' guests included in "Tools of Titans" said it was the book they most often gave as a gift to others, including renowned Silicon Valley investor Naval Ravikant.

siddharthaRavikant was the person to highlight for Ferriss the passage in which the protagonist is asked by a merchant how he can offer anything to the world if he has discarded all of his possessions. Siddhartha tells the merchant that, "Everyone gives what he has," and the merchant replies, "Very well, and what can you give? What have you learned that you can give?"

"I can think, I can wait, I can fast," Siddhartha says.

Ferriss said that this deceptively simple response is the foundation for all high performers. He explains in "Tools of Titans":

"I can think: Having good rules for decision-making, and having good questions you can ask yourself and others.

"I can wait: Being able to plan long-term, play the long game, and not mis-allocate your resources.

"I can fast: Being able to withstand difficulties and disaster. Training yourself to be uncommonly resilient and have a high pain tolerance."

"Those are three very, very powerful tools and they're very flexible," Ferriss told us.

Watch our full Facebook Live Q&A below.

SEE ALSO: 'The 4-Hour Workweek' author Tim Ferriss shares the 5 books that have influenced him most

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: 'The 4-Hour Workweek' author Tim Ferriss reveals 2 common principles he's found in successful people

Here's the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath

The 23 best colleges in the Northeast


yale students

One of the biggest decisions someone can make is where they go to college. That's why Business Insider recently released its annual list of 50 best colleges in America.

But there's also another factor that's important when it comes to choosing a school: location. So we narrowed the list down to shine a light on the best colleges the Northeast has to offer.

For the ranking, we decided to shy away from a school's reputation and selectivity and focused on the overall college experience for students and how well-prepared they are for the future. We looked at data made available by the government for post-graduate earnings as well as graduation rate. We then looked to Niche, a company that compiles research on schools, to find information about the student-life experience at each school. You can read more about the methodology here.

Scroll down to find out the 23 best schools in the Northeast.

SEE ALSO: The 50 best colleges in America

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23. Villanova University

Location: Villanova, Pennsylvania

Median salary 10 years after enrolling: $73,700

Average SAT score: 1316

Student life score: B+

Villanova University is a Catholic Augustinian university located west of Philadelphia. Inspired by the tagline, “Ignite change. Go Nova,” students are encouraged to take part in helping the community outside the classroom — students provide nearly 250,000 hours of community service annually. The school also offers 45 majors among its four colleges and the student-faculty ratio is 12:1, which allows undergraduates to really get to know their professors.

22. Babson College

Location: Wellesley, Massachusetts

Median salary 10 years after enrolling: $85,500

Average SAT score: 1258

Student life score: B+

A leader in entrepreneurial education, Babson College equips students with the skills to innovate, experiment, and lead in the business world and beyond. The private college has produced numerous successful entrepreneurs in its nearly 100-year history, including Arthur Blank, the cofounder and former president of Home Depot who is the eponym of the college's on-campus entrepreneurship hub.

21. Hamilton College

Location: Clinton, New York

Median salary 10 years after enrolling: $57,300

Average SAT score: 1384

Student life score: A

Hamilton College takes its name from founding father Alexander Hamilton, who served as one of the school's original trustees in 1793 when he was the US secretary of the Treasury. More than 200 years later, Hamilton is still going strong: One year after graduation, at least 91% of the class of 2014 had secured a full-time job or internship or were enrolled in graduate school. For those who entered the workforce, employers included companies such as General Electric, Amazon, and The New York Times.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Why you shouldn't use Q-Tips to clean out earwax — and what you should do instead


Though it might be tempting to swab inside your ears with a Q-Tip, don't.

Put down the cotton swab and step back: It's likely doing more harm than good.

In fact, William H. Shapiro, an audiologist and a clinical associate professor from NYU Langone, told Business Insider in March, "Don't put anything in your ear smaller than your elbow."

Here's why: Instead of taking out the earwax, the Q-Tip is good at pushing it farther into the ear canal toward the ear drum.

earwax pushing in

Not good. 

After a while, that earwax makes it hard for the ear drum to vibrate, which can lead to hearing loss, Shapiro explained.

ear drum problem

Why we have earwax

Despite its gross appearance, earwax is really only there to help. It can, for example keep insects out of our ears.

It also acts as an antibacterial and antifungal, fighting off infections in and around our ears. It can also trap dust, hairs, and push dead skin cells outside the body, helping things run smoothly on the inside. 

"It's not a bad thing to have wax, it's not like you have a dirty ear," Shapiro said. 

What you can do instead

Dr. Erich Voigt, an otologist at New York University, told Business Insider that he recommends washing your ears with soap and water, and then take your finger in a towel and mop out all the excess water, and along with it any wax that might be on the outside of your ear.

That way, you can avoid some of the harrowing situations Voigt has experienced, including removing a "small brown crayon amount of wax from someone's ear."

SEE ALSO: Scientists have finally figured out why astronauts lose their vision while in space

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NOW WATCH: Using Q-tips to clean your ears can do more harm than good

Inside the swanky private club where Bill Gates, Eric Schmidt, and Justin Timberlake go to ski


The Rainbow Lodge at the Yellowstone Club

Yellowstone Club, a private ski resort and residential community near Big Sky, Montana, was a pioneer in the members-only space. The first private club with its own mountain, its uber-rich members include Bill and Melinda Gates, Google's Eric SchmidtJustin Timberlake and Jessica Biel, former Vice President Dan Quayle, and NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke, as well as many Wall Streeters

Its 2,200 acres of powder offer world-class skiing from the bunny slopes to its 2,700-vertical-foot drops, but to gain access to the club's exclusive mountain, you must own property within the community limits. Real estate prices can range greatly, from $2 million all the way up to $25 million. Members must also pay an initial fee of $300,000 and an annual fee of $37,500.

Founded in 2001 by Tim Blixseth and his then-wife Edra, the club has endured its fair share of turmoil. It was forced to file for bankruptcy in 2008, and, ending this July, Blixseth spent 15 months in prison for civil contempt of court.

However, in June 2009 CrossHarbor Capital Partners' cofounder, Sam Byrne, paid $115 million for Yellowstone Club, ushering in a new era and helping to turn the club around financially. The more recently redesigned Rainbow Lodge, with its spa, fitness center and pool, is the newest evidence that Yellowstone Club is working to stay up-to-date with the modern skier.  

Ahead, 15 photos that show the joys of private skiing: no lift lines, and plenty of breathing room out on the slopes.

SEE ALSO: The next big thing in luxury travel is this company that will build you a custom temporary hotel wherever you want

Yellowstone Club is nestled in the Rocky Mountains. Founder Tim Blixseth was set on creating a resort that focused on families with slopes and activities that catered to all ages.

To be a member of the Yellowstone Club, you must own property. With an aim to remain exclusive, membership is capped to 864 households.

There's a huge range of real estate options, from condominiums to ranch homes on 360 acres of land.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

11 words you're mispronouncing all the time

Here are all of the properties that are branded with the Trump name


trump tower

President-elect Donald Trump announced on Twitter at the end of November that he would be leaving his business "in total" to "fully focus on running the country." He added that legal documents were being drafted that would remove him "completely" from business operations, and that he would hold a press conference on December 15 to explain the details. 

Trump has since postponed that announcement until January, saying that he wants more time to focus on appointing members of his future Cabinet. 

Trump's business empire and the conflicts of interest it could pose have been scrutinized throughout the future administration's transition. Earlier, Trump had said that the operations of his business would be passed on to his children in what he called a "blind trust," even though that constitutes an independent manager who typically is not someone as closely tied to the holder as his or her children.

But what does the Trump Organization actually do? The answer to that question — similar to inquiries about the president-elect's income and net worth— is quite complex. According to a recent analysis by the Wall Street Journal, "Roughly half — at least $304 million — of the revenue Mr. Trump reported in a federal financial disclosure form earlier this year came from assets held in 96 different LLCs."

That financial disclosure form is 104 pages long.

The Trump Organization includes a portfolio of real estate, hotels, and golf courses, as well as investments in clothing and other products. The company does not own most of these properties outright. Though many buildings around the world have been branded with the Trump name, many were not actually built by the Trump Organization and are instead a result of licensing agreements made with other development companies. The companies that take part in this kind of deal typically pay a fee for the use of the Trump name in the development and management of a property. 

While the perceived strength of the Trump brand dipped and spiked at various points of the election season, this licensing of the family name is a large part of what the Trump Organization does.

BI Graphics Trump property map (1)

The Trump Organization announced Wednesday that it would be backing out of one such branding and management deal: a not-yet-completed hotel project in Rio de Janeiro. In a statement to Reuters, a Trump Hotels spokesperson said that the company was motivated to end the deal by construction delays and differences of vision. Last month, federal prosecutor Anselmo Lopes began a criminal investigation into certain investments made in the project, though Trump Hotels has not commented on whether this is why the company has ended the partnership in Rio. 

Many Trump-branded residential properties — like the condominium portions of the Trump Towers in Chicago and New York, for example — are now controlled by unit owners. Some Trump properties are owned in partnership with other management companies. And in some cases, including the president-elect's home of Trump Tower, Trump does not actually own the land the buildings are situated on.

As for the organization's commercial interests, Trump has a 30% stake in two properties — 1290 Avenue of the Americas in New York and 555 California Street in San Francisco — through a partnership with Vornado Realty Trust. He also owns 40 Wall Street in New York's Financial District and the Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida.

Here, we've rounded up all of the Trump-branded properties and their locations around the world. We've also noted which properties were developed as part of a licensing arrangement.

SEE ALSO: Trump's proposed tariff could cause a major problem for Ivanka's $100 million business

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

We tried the miracle fruit that some scientists say could end world hunger as 'carnitas' — and it was unreal


It began with a hankering for tacos.

My partner and I were out of both the chicken and the ground soy crumbles I often substitute for beef (I think they taste better, and my partner is vegetarian). A friend at the office suggested I try jackfruit, a fleshy, yellowish fruitnative to South and Southeast Asia.

"It tastes like pulled pork!" my friend exclaimed, "and it's healthy."

You're probably thinking: Fruit is fruit. Meat is meat. I was too. Nevertheless, I finally decided to give it a whirl.

In its most natural (i.e. still on the tree) form, jackfruit looks like this:


At markets around the world, vendors slice open the monstrous yellow orbs, hack out the fleshy bulbs of the inner part of the fruit, and sell them by the pound. Raw and ripe, the fruit tastes like a cross between a mango and a pineapple:


But young jackfruit can also be shredded, seasoned, cooked, and served up as an alternative to meat. At a store in my neighborhood in Brooklyn, I bought a package of seasoned jackfruit sold by Upton's Naturals. They had Bar-B-Que and Chili Lime Carnitas varieties, and I decided to try both.

When I got home and took it out of the package, the jackfruit was enclosed in a sealed plastic pouch:

jackfruit uptons naturals bbq

Remembering that the original reason I decided to try the fruit was because I wanted to make tacos, I left the BBQ jackfruit for another day and went for the Chili Lime Carnitas flavor. 

Then, I took it out of the package, fried it up in a skillet with a bit of oil, and prepared it much like I'd prepare sliced cooked chicken. Finally, I served it up on warm corn tortillas with a bit of cheese, salsa, and some mushrooms:

jackfruit tacos

It was surprisingly tasty — with a texture similar to pulled pork and a flavor that reminded me of a cross between hearts of palm, kimchi, and pineapple. It wasn't really meaty, but it wasn't fruity either. 

Some experts say this quality is what makes jackfruit a 'miracle' crop: It's versatile. With climate change pushing back global yields of wheat and corn and threatening more and more of the poorest communities with longterm hunger, jackfruit seems poised to help fill the gap. 

"I think it could play a much more important role in diets than it currently does and be a staple," Nyree Zerega, a plant biology researcher at the Chicago Botanic Garden who's studied jackfruit in Bangladesh, told the Guardian.

For starters, jackfruit trees — which can sprout up to 150 jackfruits over its two yearly harvest seasons— are fairly easy to grow. They can flourish in high temperatures — even during drought — and the tough outer shell of the fruit serves as a good defense against pests that take down other crops. Today, jackfruit is grown across many parts of south and southeast Asia, where a large number of the world's poorest and hungriest currently live.

Plus, the fruit itself is nutritious: The flesh is high in calcium, iron, and potassium, and the seeds — which are edible as well — are good sources of protein. A serving of Upton's Chili Lime Carnitas jackfruit, which is a quarter of the package, weighs in at 35 calories, 0 grams of fat, 290mg of sodium, 195 mg of potassium, 7g of carbs, 2g of sugar and 1g of protein. Frying it, of course, adds some calories and fat, but overall, it's still pretty low-calorie. Since it's fairly low protein, though, I added cheese to my tacos to make them more filling.

In Sri Lanka and Vietnam, where the fruit is already popular, jackfruit seeds and fruit are dried out, ground up and made into flour. In Bangladesh and other parts of Southeast Asia, it's added to curries, stir fry, juice, chips, and ice cream.

Try the cooked young jackfruit in tacos or a sandwich, or sample the ripe fruit by itself. Perhaps you'll be tasting the future.

SEE ALSO: This fruit is the best new meat substitute

DON'T MISS: Experts are hailing this exotic fruit that tastes like pulled pork as a 'miracle' crop, which could save millions from starvation

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: We tried jackfruit — the huge tree fruit that supposedly tastes like pulled pork

15 things you should never do at the office holiday party


BI Graphics_13 things you should never do at the office holiday party 4x3

'Tis the season for office holiday parties, which can be fun and festive if everyone is on their best behavior — or disastrous when too many people decide to let loose.

Unfortunately, the latter happens far too often.

"People need to remember that although the holiday party is a time to celebrate, this activity is still a business event and how you behave matters," says Barbara Pachter, an etiquette expert and the author of "The Essentials of Business Etiquette."

"People have said and done all sorts of inappropriate things that have impacted their career by not following simple etiquette rules," she adds. "For example, it is important to stay sober. One young man got drunk at his holiday party, cursed out his boss, and got fired on the spot. The next day he couldn't understand why his badge didn't work. He had no recollection of the previous evening's events."

According to a new CareerBuilder survey, a whopping 69% of employers say they'll throw a holiday party this year. If your company is one of them and you want to keep your job and reputation intact, here are some simple etiquette rules to follow:

DON'T MISS: We asked and you answered — here are 19 of the wildest office holiday party stories we've ever heard

SEE ALSO: The 17 best icebreakers to use at a holiday party where you don't know anyone

Don't skip it

Unless you already have other plans that night that you absolutely cannot miss or change, show up to the office holiday party.

"You may not want to go," says Pachter, but it's important that you show your commitment to the company.

"Your absence will be noticed, and most likely, noted by your boss and other higher ups," she adds.

Don't be the first to leave

Obviously someone has to be the first to leave. But for the same reason that you shouldn't skip the holiday party altogether — it's good for your career to show your face — you should avoid being the first one saying their goodbyes. 

Don't dress inappropriately

The party may not take place during traditional work hours — but that doesn't mean you should dress like you're going to a nightclub.

You should wear clothing you wouldn't be embarrassed to wear to work, but, since it's a special occasion, it's fine to take it up one notch — just don't go over the top.

"It is a party, but your attire needs to be suitable for a business event, not a nightclub. Don’t wear anything that is too short, too tight, too low, or too anything," advises Pachter.

Also, if you normally wear a suit to work, don't show up to the office party in jeans and a T-shirt — or a Hello Kitty onesie.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

This Silicon Valley 'smart drug' startup crashed and burned on 'Shark Tank,' but business is booming


nootrobox shark tank

Nootrobox, a startup based in San Francisco that makes and sells cognitive-enhancement supplements, or "smart drugs," crashed and burned on a recent episode of "Shark Tank."

Cofounders Geoff Woo and Michael Brandt tried to raise at a $40 million valuation — more than any startup has ever asked for on the show — and left empty-handed. They received brutal criticisms from the show's panel. Woo tells Business Insider it was worth it.

"I think we sort of had our own agenda, in that, we knew that if we [were] going to do an investment, we would treat it as a real transaction," Woo said, explaining that the offer had to be competitive for them to commit.

"We also knew that having a platform to expose mainstream America [to Nootrobox] was well worth the potential backlash."

It appears Woo, the startup's CEO, was right. Since the episode aired, business has been booming. The venture-backed company saw six times more orders in the weekend after they appeared on "Shark Tank" than it did over a weekend in the month prior to the show airing, according to Woo.

Google Trends data shows web searches for Nootrobox and Go Cubes, the company's signature caffeine-infused gummy product, also spiked higher than ever.

nootrobox shark tank

Woo and Brandt appeared on the show to pitch Go Cubes. Nootrobox claims the gummy can improve clarity and focus. Its formulation contains L-Theanine, an ingredient in green tea that may cancel out the jitteriness associated with a caffeine buzz.

The company reported $1 million in revenue year-to-date (the episode taped earlier in 2016) and 17% growth month-over-month. Nootrobox has raised $2.57 million to date from top investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Marissa Mayer, and Mark Pincus.

The pair failed to give the story behind the product, however, and dove into the science that makes it unique. The pitch did not go over well.

"I think you guys are flying very close to the sun," Kevin O'Leary said.

"You came in and you gave us sugar cubes," Lori Greiner told them.

shark tank nootrobox

Chris Sacca, an early investor in Twitter and Uber and a guest judge on "Shark Tank," also delivered some burns on social media.

Woo says 90 minutes of filming were reduced to a 10-minute segment. The sharks peppered him and cofounder Brandt with questions, talking over each other in the process. Woo says he felt like the sharks were competing for sound bites.

"It was like controlling a classroom of kids," Woo said, adding that he wanted to say, "'I can answer all of these questions, [but] I can [only] answer one at a time.'"

It was brutal to watch. The San Francisco-based company, which was invited on the show by ABC, according to Woo, failed to impress a single shark.

Woo chalks up his awkward "Shark Tank" experience as one step in the evolution of the company.

"Some of the feedback I got from people [was that] the sharks came off as pretty impatient with us. Maybe rightly so. We were asking for a ridiculous valuation," Woo said.

SEE ALSO: Silicon Valley's new craze is flying to Peru to take a psychedelic you can't legally get in America

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: BARBARA CORCORAN: Chris Sacca is 'probably the most arrogant Shark we've ever had'

Trump says this private boarding school gave him more military training than the Army could — take a look


new york military academy donald trump

Before he became a billionaire real estate developer, reality TV star, and president-elect, Donald Trump was a cadet who attended the New York Military Academy.

Founded in 1889, the private school is spread across 120 acres in rural Cornwall, New York, located 60 miles north of Manhattan. The cost of tuition is $41,210 a year at the school, which ranks No. 128 on a list of the best boarding schools in the US by education resource Niche.

The story goes that Trump's parents shipped their 13-year-old son off to NYMA when he began acting up and it became a problem. Some 50 years later, Trump would tell his biographer that his five years' education there gave him more military training than the military could.

Here's what it's like at NYMA.

SEE ALSO: What it's like to attend the most elite boarding school in America

The New York Military Academy opened doors in 1889 with the hopes of preparing cadets for "further education and to be effective leaders and responsible citizens."

Source: New York Military Academy

Charles Jefferson Wright, a Civil War veteran and teacher, founded the school under the belief that a military structure provided the best environment for academic achievement.

Source: New York Military Academy

Through the years, the student body has remained small. Two classroom buildings and three dorms accommodate the 28 students who enrolled in the 2016-17 academic year.

Source: New York Military Academy and Wall Street Journal

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Marijuana can be covered in pesticides, fungi, and mold — even if it's legal


marijuana weed pot 2

There is no known lethal dose of marijuana, which means it can't kill you. But the stuff that gets sprayed or grows organically on pot buds can.

Studies show that marijuana sampled across the US carries unsafe levels of pesticides, mold, fungi, and bacteria. Earlier this year, Colorado recalled hundreds of batches that tested positive for banned pesticides.

It's unclear how much cannabis, whether purchased legally in a dispensary or bought from a college roommate's cousin's friend, is at risk. But as the industry goes mainstream, experts suggest it's time legal weed gets quality assurance.

Educating consumers on what they're smoking might be the first step, according to scientists at Steep Hill Labs, a leading cannabis science and technology firm in Berkeley, California.

In 2016, Reggie Gaudino, vice president of scientific operations at Steep Hill, set out on a scientific experiment. He visited three brick-and-mortar dispensaries in the Bay Area and bought at least five samples of cannabis flower from each.

In order to decide which strains to buy, he asked cashiers, called "budtenders," for their recommendations. He also chose the strains with the highest percentage of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Many patients choose that option from the menu because they believe it will get them the most high, or give them "the most bang for their buck," Gaudino explains.

It's unclear if the dispensaries he visited test their products for contaminants at third-party labs — a practice that's becoming more common as states with newly legalized cannabis roll out regulations.

medical marijuana patient dabbing oil concentrate

When Gaudino took the samples back to the lab, he found that 70% of the samples tested positive for pesticide residues. One-third of samples would have failed pesticide regulations in the state of Oregon, which has the most sophisticated system for pesticide-testing of the seven states with fully legalized marijuana.

Fifty percent of the samples that tested positive for pesticides also contained Myclobutanil, a fungicide treatment commonly used on California grapes, almonds, and strawberries. When digested, it's harmless. But when heated, the chemical turns into hydrogen cyanide, a gas that interferes with the body's ability to use oxygen normally.

The central nervous system, cardiovascular system, and pulmonary system (lungs) start to fail when exposed to high concentration of the gas.

The news isn't quite as alarming as it sounds. Donald Land, chief scientific consultant at Steep Hill, tells Business Insider that most people would not be susceptible to falling ill after inhaling a few spores.

However, someone whose immune system is weakened — like a cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy or a person infected with HIV — is much more vulnerable to infection upon inhaling contaminated cannabis. Basically, the people who stand to benefit the most from medical marijuana are also the most vulnerable.

The results of Gaudino's study have yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal, though Gaudino tells us a white paper is in the works. The lab plans to test an array of other marijuana products, like concentrates and oil cartridges for vaporizer pens, before publishing.

marijuana grow room

Land and Gaudino explain that, for the most part, the industry is doing the best it can to provide safe pot.

There is no framework on the federal level that dictates how cannabis should be tested or what threshold constitute a failing grade. Most growers and dispensaries in states with legalized marijuana have to hold themselves accountable for verifying the safety of their product.

Some pay third-party labs like Steep Hill to analyze their product for pesticides and contaminants, but most only want to know the THC content of a given strain, Land says. The more potent the weed, the more they can charge for it.

Fewer than 20 states offer some form of testing, according to estimate provided by Land. The states that offer the most widely available marijuana, including California, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington, have testing facilities — but they don't all require testing, and regulations can vary on a local level.

More research is needed to understand the health concerns associated with cannabis. Marijuana remains illegal under federal law, making it difficult for scientists to acquire the funding and samples needed for study.

In the meantime, Land suggests marijuana patients and recreational users take responsibility for their health by asking their budtender to see a lab report on the strain they wish to buy. They can compare the results with Oregon's publicly available threshold levels for safe cannabis.

Even if you can't make out what the report means, the dispensary's ability to provide documentation is "absolutely better than nothing," Land says.

SEE ALSO: A new study suggests marijuana could be a miracle drug in the bedroom

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8 ways to get through your office gift exchange without things getting awkward


gift exchange coworkers secret santsa

You may spend a large portion of your life with these people, but that doesn't make exchanging presents with your coworkers any less awkward.

If you plan on swapping gifts at the office this year, Rosalinda Oropeza Randall, an etiquette and civility expert and the author of "Don't Burp in the Boardroom," has some dos and don'ts to help you avoid any embarrassing moments.

DO speak to your boss about it first

"Before you play Santa at work, find out what the policy is on gift-giving and receiving," Randall says.

As a courtesy, it's a good idea to make sure the people in charge are OK with in-office gift-giving, she says. And depending on their personal policy on getting involved with staff, you could also invite them to participate.

DON'T forget to extend the invitation to the entire department

If you plan on having your gift exchange in the office or at a company gathering, make sure you don't exclude anyone. Randall suggests placing a sign-up sheet in a common area, including a deadline, not pressuring anyone to participate.

DO set a maximum dollar amount that everyone agrees on

"Not everyone can afford lavish gifts," Randall says.

DON'T disrupt others

"It's probable that not everyone will participate, so consider holding the exchange away from work, during a lunch break, or before or after work hours," Randall suggests.

If you're planning to exchange gifts within your office clique or only with a specific person, it's best to plan the gift exchange away from work.

DO put some thought into your gift

Unless you feel that's what's wanted, skip the off-the-shelf gift card and opt for something a little more inspired.

"Hopefully, you know a little bit about your coworker — are they a hiker, coffee drinker, book fanatic, grilling expert, or nap lover? Use your imagination and buy accordingly," Randall says.

DON'T give anything too personal

Avoid lingerie, adult toys, bathing products, or a book on "How to be a better parent," Randall warns.

DO get something new

Put that dusty candle back in your closet — no one likes receiving an obviously used or unwanted gift. 

"If you can't afford a gift, decline to participate," Randall says.

DON'T give alcohol

Alcohol may seem like an easy, go-to gift — who doesn't like a glass of wine after a long day at the office? Well, the answer is, plenty of people. "You never know who is struggling with addiction or has religious restrictions," Randall points out.

Unless you are certain the recipient enjoys a drink now and then, you're better off avoiding alcohol as a gift.

SEE ALSO: You probably shouldn't buy your boss a gift this holiday season

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19 tips to help you manage stress over the holidays


Let's be real. The holidays — while a great time to see family and friends — can be exhausting and filled with stressful situations, from delayed flights to last-minute holiday shopping.

Luckily, this stress doesn't have to get out of control.

To guide you through the holidays stress-free, Happify, a website and app that uses science-based interactive activities aimed at increasing your happiness, made this graphic filled with tips on how to unwind, take time for yourself, and cope with high-stress situations.

happify holiday stress

SEE ALSO: 15 healthy ways to manage stress during especially stressful times

DON'T MISS: 14 scientific tricks to beat stress, anxiety, and fear

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