OtherSolving the things that make us go, “GRRRRRRR.”

Sometimes it’s the little things in life. They can bring us joy—or they can really annoy us.

Luckily for us, there are people hard at work trying to alleviate our daily annoyances, and some of these folks are right in our backyard.

Here are three Oregon startups that may bring more “aaaahs” and fewer “grrrrrrs” to our daily lives:

Knock app
Log in to anything with a double tap on your phone. It works, trust us.

Knock knock. Who’s there? A new app that claims it can replace your passwords with a simple, “knock knock.” That’s right—instead of keeping track of the dizzying array of passwords you have no doubt accumulated over the last decade, the just-released Knock app lets you bypass the cyber security guards with a simple double-tap on your phone.

It’s not only easier, but also safer, according to co-founders William Henderson and Jon Schlossberg. Knock won top prize at Demolicious in September.

Blueshift portable speaker
This sustainable, open source portable speaker runs on a supercapacitator, perhaps best described as your traditional battery on steroids.

Ever ran out of juice on your smartphone at an inconvenient time? With so much of our lives revolving around electronic devices, low or weak batteries are a near-daily frustration.

Enter the supercapacitor, which is as cool as it sounds. It can charge a device in five minutes, keep it charged for six hours, and stay strong through 500,000 charges. Blueshift, a Portland startup and winner of the Palo Alto LivePlan pitch award at this week’s Gorge Angel Conference, is using supercapacitors for its open-source, sustainable electronic product line, starting with a portable speaker.

Simple bank photo check deposit
Taking photos of our paper checks? Such a simple idea, brought to you by a bank of the same name.

With all these breakthroughs in technology, paper is starting to seem a bit archaic. And yet, how many times do we still somehow end up with a pesky paper check that we need to hand-deliver to the nearest ATM?

Simple, a virtual bank headquartered in Portland, has a simple solution—upload photos of your checks and save a trip to the ATM. That’s in addition to a lot of other nifty online tools. One excited customer has described the Simple banking experience as “euphoric.” Wow. That’s a long ways from, “Grrrrrr.”

Who else in Oregon is helping us solve our daily annoyances?

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