Estimote’s first prototype looked like a parrot. (...) The parrot is gone but Estimote has just launched out of the latest Y Combinator class and is ready to create an OS for physical locations. Their product, the Beacon, now looks like a lumpen, colored gem and sticks to the wall, reporting on current retail traffic and pushing notifications to shoppers – who have pre-registered for the messages, of course. The promise of the platform is thrilling if you’re in sales and even more interesting if you’re a customer. In short, the environment interacts with you in a manner heretofore unavailable to individual retailers and it does it using your own smartphone.