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Ford Overcomes ‘Alien’ Image in Silicon Valley, Embraces Apps

When Ford Motor Co. came to Noah Shanok’s San Francisco startup about using his technology, he expected it to be like meeting strangers from another planet.

“We thought we might have been like aliens,” said Shanok, the 35-year-old chief executive officer of Stitcher, whose software lets users collect talk-radio programs on one custom channel. “It became quickly clear when talking to the leadership at Ford that we were smart people looking at problems together.”