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New police chief David Rahinsky listens during a city commission meeting.

Why Not?: OperationBodyCam GR opens up a community conversation

What does the national trend towards police body cameras mean here in Grand Rapids? It's a measure that finds almost universal favor among civil rights advocates and citizens from a range of backgrounds on Internet comment threads and in community meetings. But dig deeper, and the pros and cons of the technology get murkier. Rapid Growth's managing editor Stephanie Doublestein spent a night in a patrol car on a ride-along with the Grand Rapids Police Department last month, interviewed both Chief Rahinsky and those behind the recent community initiative OperationBodyCamGR, and attended this week's Grand Rapids City Commission meeting to help you understand what the growing call for body cams means here in our city.

RCzola

RapidChat: Ashima Saigal

Ashima Saigal just returned from the Dreamforce conference in San Francisco where she was recognized for her work helping nonprofits make peace with their data. Ashima has always been ahead of her time: she studied Computer Science at MSU and was an early adopter of both cloud-based computing and yoga. Now that the world is catching up, she’s zooming ahead: weaving a thread of mindfulness throughout life and work, observing more women entering her field, and, finally, moving to a new home in Grand Rapids proper. Read on as we chat all about it.

Jason Porritt

Atomic Object plays under the big lights with new drug testing app

Grand Rapids’ own Atomic Object teamed up with Drug Free Sport to create a new iPad-based drug testing app that projects to launch into use with the NFL, NBA, NCAA and more. Steven Thomas Kent reports on how the local tech company is getting in the game on a national level.

RG Spindance

Lakeshore software company looks toward a big future in smart products

Holland smart software company Spindance plans to expand their area footprint and polish up their brand with a new office in Grand Rapids and a website re-design. Steven Thomas Kent peeks inside to report on their savvy approach to smart technology.

UIX_KimDabbs_List

UIX: Kim Dabbs keeps innovative education at forefront of WMCAT

"WMCAT has this amazing opportunity to find new approaches to education, blending the two models of traditional education and what we could consider social entrepreneurship," says Kim Dabbs, executive director of WMCAT. Kelly LeCoy checks in to see what's new at WMCAT in this week's Urban Innovation Exchange.
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