Layoffs in Conway: 500 Jobs Gone at Hewlett-Packard

Above, my quick conversation with THV 11 News about yesterday’s announcement by Hewlett-Packard that it would lay off 500 people at its technical support center in Conway. Our breaking news coverage on Arkansas Business here, along with an additional report by the AP and an interview with Brad Lacy of the Conway Chamber of Commerce here.

It’s the second blow to Arkansas’ job base in as many weeks. Last week, Nordex USA, which makes parts for windmills, announced it would end wind turbine production at its Jonesboro plant. That move will cut 40 jobs, but it also ends all hope that Nordex will ever reach its projected employment number of 750, which it touted when announcing the project in 2008.

At Nordex’s Germany headquarters, officials were quick to blame Congress for failing to make a long-term commitment to a crucial wind energy tax credit that was driving business. But in Palo Alto, Calif., home of HP, executives have only themselves to blame. The company was caught wholly unprepared for the mobile computing revolution, touched off by Apple’s iPhone and raised to new heights by its iPad. HP’s high-profile CEO changes, an aborted plan to exit the PC business, and the wasted, $1.2 billion acquisition of Palm Inc. didn’t help matters, either.

My Look at Google Glass with Brant Collins

Google Glass

Google Glass, perched atop its little gray case.

Is it the future, or a Segway for your face? That’s the central question regarding Google Glass, the Internet-connected glasses with heads-up display, Wifi, Bluetooth and the ability to shoot high-definition video and photos and share them instantly with the world. Thanks to Brant Collins of Stations X of Little Rock, I was able to see Glass up close in this video for Arkansas Business.

As you can see, the video and photo quality are surprising great, and device’s potential uses has early adopters like Collins thinking of myriad ways to use Glass in business, technology, health care and more. Click here for my up-close look at Google Glass, or hit “continue reading” below and watch the video here.

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Video: Johnny Allison and Wallace Fowler on Their $280 Million Bank Deal

My hastily thrown together segment on that $280 million Home BancShares/Liberty Bank of Arkansas deal, which originally debuted here. Since then, there have been two more big Arkansas banking deals — one by First Federal Bancshares of Arkansas of Harrison, and another involving Metropolitan National Bank of Little Rock. Yep, it’s the Summer of Bank Deals in Arkansas.

Video: The Saturday Week in Review and ‘Arkansas Week’ on AETN

It’s time to take another look at the week that was in Arkansas Business. First, above, our weekly “Arkansas Business Week in Review,” which airs Saturday mornings on THV 11 News. We look back on a week chock full of Arkansas public company earnings and other developments.

Meanwhile, AETN’s “Arkansas Week,” we talk about the farm bill in Washington D.C., new developments in the Arkansas governor’s race, earnings season and the abortion law in court. You can watch the full episode — which features me, Rick Fahr, David Keith and host Steve Barnes – right here

Funeral Today for Journalist Bob McCord

The funeral for journalist Robert McCord is set for today. Arkansas Business has details here, which includes an account of McCord’s work to establish the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act, which, despite the state Legislature’s best efforts, remains among the strongest in the country.

Above is how I first met McCord, on Little Rock CBS affiliate KTHV-TV, Channel 11, where, for a time, he wrote and delivered commentaries. I’d meet in person years later, after graduating high school, going to college and attending SPJ events. He was always an exceptionally nice and thoughtful person, and to say he’ll be missed is understatement.

Video: The Treatsie Unboxing

With the help of Kickstarter, our friends Jamie & Lisa and Keith & Amanda have founded Treatsie, a delicious monthly subscription service to artisan candies from an ever-changing variety of vendors. Treatsie shipped its first box this week, and as Kickstarter backers, Laura and I rushed home to open it.

You can learn more about the company and what’s in store right here, and you can follow them on Twitter @TreatsieCandy.

Arkansas Week: Dustin McDaniel on ExxonMobile in Mayflower & Medicaid

On this week’s edition of AETN‘s “Arkansas Week,” Steve Barnes talks to Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel about ExxonMobil and the Mayflower oil spill. Plus, me, KUAR’s Michael Hibblen and the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s Doug Thompson discuss the Medicaid non-expansion expansion and gubernatorial/congressional politics.

You can watch the whole show right here.