Does your chocolate choice show your politics? CrowdTwist says yes

Timed to Halloween and the presidential election, New York-based social loyalty startup CrowdTwist analyzed user data related to brand preferences for chocolate and political affiliation. Its data suggest that Democrats tend to prefer non-premium chocolate, while Republicans opt for more up-market sweets.

APIs & data dominate TechStars Cloud demo day

Eleven startups building the “plumbing of the internet” presented today for the TechStars Cloud demo day, and the common thread running through them all was making it easier to build app-like products and services as well as an obsession with data. Plus one cool consumer startup.

Email is still hot: Why SendGrid got $21M in VC funds

SendGrid, a TechStars graduate, has become one of largest email platforms in the world by handling the boom in transactional emails that web application send out to stay in touch with users. The company is announcing it has raised a $21 million Series B round.

TechStars raises $24M, hands out $100k to each start-up

TechStars announced it has raised a new $24 million fund that will allow it to up the amount of money it provides each startup to $100,000. The money will be applied to all of TechStars classes in 2012 including Boston, Boulder, New York City and Seattle.

Meet Capital Factory’s 5 graduating startups

Austin’s answer to TechStars or YCombinator shows off its graduating class of startups today (plus 15 other companies) as the third year of the Capital Factory accelerator program comes to a close. I went out last week to interview the startups to get readers the scoop.

Flixmaster makes HTML5 video interactive

Startup Flixmaster is making it easier for video creators to make interactive applications. Its platform provides a drag-and-drop interface for creating branching relationships between videos and publishing them online. The platform publishes in HTML5 video, aiming at the growing number of mobile devices that support video.

TechStars Boston Demo Day highlights health start-ups

TechStars’ Boston class came of age today at their demo day capping off a frenzied three-month program that has produced a strong, business-focused class that was especially memorable for its health component. Here’s a look at a handful of the startups that caught my eye. A Leanback Experience for Personalized Video surfaces videos that are shared by your Facebook friends or Twitter contacts and presents them to you as a full-screen stream of videos. The main idea behind this approach is to make online video more like actual TV through an instant-on playback experience.

Q&A: TechStars Founder David Cohen

Of 39 startups who have participated in TechStars through this spring, six have been acquired, five have failed, and 28 are still active. If nothing else, you have to love that level of transparency. In an interview, founder David Cohen shared more.

TechStars Grades Itself

Updated:¬†TechStars, a seed-stage investment program which has outposts in Boulder, Colo., as well as Boston and Seattle, recently decided to grade itself.…

Notes From a Conversation With Y Combinator's Paul Graham

Last week, when down in Los Angeles, I had a chance to interview Paul Graham, co-founder of YCombinator on-stage at the Twiistup conference. The wide ranging conversation spanned a good 45 minutes and generically talked about the Internet start-ups and entrepreneurship. Here are some highlights.