One of the reasons I started Silicon Florist was to use my marketing powers for good, by casting the spotlight on “Portland Web 2.0 startups” and individuals who have been developing really, really cool things here in the Silicon Forest. But who, through sheer lack of time, may not have the opportunity or wherewithal to promote themselves as much as they would like.
I’m happy to report that a number of those companies just got a much brighter spotlight shone on them, thanks to Oregon Business Magazine‘s cover story this month “10 Coolest Tech Startups You’ve Never Heard Of.”
Among the Silicon Florist alumni featured are:
- Values of n (Sandy and Stikkit)
- JanRain (myOpenID, pibb)
- NetworthIQ (now part of Strands)
- Grabb.it (Silicon Florist’s first post)
- Walker Tracker
- Urban Drinks
Congratulations to all of those featured for stepping on to a much larger stage! I’ll look forward to continuing to cover your progress and highlighting your wins.
Photo credit: Michael G. Halle
Portland Lunch 2.0, admittedly a continually evolving work-in-progress, has quickly taken a firm hold—and sparked some interesting conversations—in the Portland tech community.
And like developing any product, even though the Portland Lunch 2.0 team (read Jake Kuramoto) hasn’t launched the latest version of their product—that version will launch on Monday—the team is already hard at work on the next version.
So, I thought it might be helpful to step into a product manager role, ever so briefly. Just so you can get the milestones and release schedule on your calendar.
Let’s take a glance at the product roadmap:
- Portland Lunch 2.0 SP4 will be released Monday, June 30, at Wieden + Kennedy
“On Monday June 30th, the PDX Tech/Tweeple community is cordially invited to join 50-100 W+K employees for a “blind date meets grade school birthday party” ad/tech extravaganza. It’s going to be a fun, it’s going to be quirky, and it’s going to rock RockBand style (literally).”
- Portland Lunch 2.0 SP5 will be released Wednesday, July 16, at souk
“The Portland Lunch 2.0 saga continues at flex term office space provider souk, once again in Old Town on July 16, 2008. We won’t stop until we have Lunch 2.0 at every, single business in Old Town.”
- Portland Lunch 2.0 SP6 will be released…?
For more information or to RSVP, visit Upcoming for the Portland Lunch 2.0 SP4 and Portland Lunch 2.0 SP5 RSVP lists. If you’re interested in hosting SP6 or a later release, please ping Jake Kuramoto.
Like the little orange RSS chiclet, the Universal Edit Button—launched last week—is, in my opinion, one of the most promising promotional tools for raising the visibility of wikis and other editable sites.
But in order for it to work, people need to understand exactly what it is.
“I heard about the UEB when it came out, and I thought it was really cool,” said Kistner. “Then I started talking to some other folks about it, and managed to get Ward, who devised the wiki concept, Mark, who had been coordinating the UEB launch activities, and Pete, who had been integral to the project, all on the phone.”
Kistner’s Skype conversation is available below. (Audio quality is a little rough at times, but the content more than makes up for it. And don’t be fooled at the beginning… You didn’t just initiate a Skype call.)
Just click the little gray arrow to listen.
Ever been to an unconference? We had one here in Portland at the beginning of May called BarCamp Portland. And during that BarCamp, a number of folks had the opportunity to lead and attend a few sessions on hacking WordPress, the popular open-source blogging and content-management system. Those sessions formed, by design, a mini-version of WordCamp, a series of grassroots, locally managed conferences for WordPress developers.
So how was the mini-WordCamp received?
Well. Very well, in fact. Interest was high. And the discussions were good. (One of the more packed sessions I attended was a WordPress session.) And that got Aaron Hockley to thinking: Maybe we should get rid of the “mini” and have a full-fledged WordCamp.
And guess what? That’s exactly what he’s done.
Announcing WordCamp Portland
Do you use WordPress? Want to get more out of WordPress? Need some WordPress tips? Well then, mark September 27 on your calendar with a big W. Simply WordPress curious? You’re welcome, as well.
I’m excited. And I know some other folks around town are already champing at the bit to attend WordCamp Portland, as well. Among them, Betsy Richter of the newly launched Our PDX—a WordPress blog, itself:
[I’ve] already blocked September 27th off on my calendar and am volunteering my time to help make this happen – I really loved the energy at BarCamp & am a total WordPress idiot savant (brilliant at some things, not so hot at others), so am thrilled to see this coming together.
As with every unconference, there’s a dire need for three things: sponsors, volunteers, and participants. So, if WordCamp Portland sounds even remotely interesting to you, why not take a second to RSVP on Upcoming to help give the organizers an way to better gauge interest?
Well, it’s happened quickly, but it’s been fun. As Vidoop has brought various groups of employees up for a tour of their new hometown, we’ve had the pleasure of meeting Vidoop Troops one, two, and—after this Friday’s Beer and Blog—three.
After that, all that’s left is actually getting them moved up here. And that, my friends, is going to a-whole-nother adventure.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We’ve got new Vidoopers to meet and welcome to the Rose City.
Who? I’m glad you asked.
Nick Davis, Founding Software Developer
What? I’m involved in several projects, but tend to focus on designing and developing authentication solutions. I also work on some information security related things when not writing code.
How? Raised in Southeast Oklahoma (Spiro), I moved to Tulsa for college and have been here ever since. I earned my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Computer Science at the University of Tulsa, and did research in secure operating systems (SE Linux) while at TU. I joined Vidoop as a founding member in March 2006. Outside of work, I enjoy hanging out with family and friends, reading, video games, biking, working out, and movies (especially sci-fi/cyberpunk). Recently, I got married to a wonderful girl named Adrienne, who manages to put up with my various technology obsessions (still trying to get her on Twitter 🙂 )
Questions about Portland?
- Good neighborhoods to live for young married couples?
- Good biking trails in and around the city?
- What are the best “weird Portland” places that are unique to the city, and what things must I do/see to have the whole Portland experience?
- What is the best seafood restaurant in the city?
Rachel Garrette, Marketing + Copy Writer
What? I write and edit copy, assist in the development/maintenance of our websites, create and maintain marketing videos as well as other marketing material, work with vendors, etc.
How? Born and bred in Oklahoma, I graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in Journalism / Broadcast and Electronic Media. After college, I worked for a couple of years as a video editor at the largest independent sports production company in the U.S., serving clients such as ESPN, ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox Sports Net, Discovery, Major League Soccer, and many more. One fateful night in 2006, I met Luke Sontag at a concert. He pitched what then seemed like only an outlandish idea, and it soon came to fruition in the form of Vidoop. A year later, I finally joined the wild ride.
I enjoy music, art, traveling, history, puppies and fireworks (though not fireworks in, on, or under puppies). My favorite food is cereal. I love a good estate sale. I despise banana flavored taffy, and I’m the clumsiest person you’ll meet. I have an astute adolescent sense of humor eloquently coupled with a love for corny jokes. My Boston Terrier, Henry, can’t wait to explore Portland’s parks.
Questions about Portland?
- I’m having trouble finding a rental property in the NW district that accepts dogs. What gives?! Any suggestions?
- Where is the best place to go for a run outdoors?
- Where is the best place to hear live music outdoors?
- What is the best place to get your hair cut?
Adam Kuert, Lead Web Developer
What? Attend a meeting, write some code, upgrade a server, accidentally delete a vital directory, restore from backup…you know, the usual life of a web dev.
How? Got a degree in Computer Science; realized programming was slightly more complicated than TI-83 BASIC. Ran my own company from 2 years, escaped to find job security, found… another startup. When I’m not coding, you can find me on the soccer field pretending I didn’t get cut from the team in High School. I Lived in Kenya for 18 years and I’m hoping Portland weather is just like Kenya’s: when it’s not raining…it’s perfect.
Questions about Portland?
- Is the weather really as great as hear? Or does everyone trudges through the rest of the year just waiting for summer to return? [Editor: Truth be known, it’s really more of a “slog” than “trudge.”]
- Do people actually ‘ski or go to the beach only 90 minutes away’ or is that just a sales pitch for getting people like me to move? [Editor: We have a beach 90 minutes away? Oh wait. I mean, yes.]
Steven Osborn, Founding Software Developer
What? I built the first prototype of our ImageShield technology and since then I’ve worked on nearly every project conceived at Vidoop. Currently working on alien browser plug-in technology to take over the world.
How? I’ve lived in the Tulsa area most of my life, excluding a short tour to Afghanistan. I previously worked for a healthcare software company developing web applications. I’m involved in just about every technology group in Tulsa including Tulsa PHP, Python, Ruby, and even .NET and Java which means I have access to more free pizza than any human can safely consume in their lifetime. Some technologies I’m currently excited about: Django, Python, Android and Mercurial.
Questions about Portland?
- I have a 18mo son who was born 16 weeks premature. Does Oregon offer a program similar to SoonerStart? (They send out therapists on a regular basis to check up on his progress regularly free of charge.)
- Are there any outstanding childcare facilities?
- What are your favorite fun weekend family activities?
John Whitlock, Software Developer
What? Lead of the RecognitionAUTH team, making the backend service that runs myVidoop faster and smarter, then packaging it for licensees. I think in Python, write C++, and study software management.
How? I was raised in Arnold, just south of St. Louis. I begged for a computer, then a Borland C++ compiler, and spent my allowance on programming books. I got an electrical engineering degree from the University of Tulsa, because I wanted to dive one level deeper into computers. However, code mistakes are less painful than electrical mistakes, so I put away the soldering iron and stuck with programming. I worked for 8 years at a flight simulation company, helping to make pilot training simulators and learning
more Fortran than I ever wanted. When my company started to dissolve, I was surprised to find a web startup in our own backyard.
My wife Jennifer is a research librarian, advocating for new technologies to support the information needs of customers. She is also the Foundation Center Coordinator, helping local non-profits find funding. Our daughter Ainsley recently turned four, and confuses Austin and Portland.
Questions about Portland?
- Where are the good, affordable, all-day child care centers / pre-schools?
- Was is the difference between Austin and Portland? [Editor: We have better beer. Our parks feature green grass as opposed to dead yellow grass. And our birds know to quiet down at night.]
- Are earthquakes a problem? Is there something we tornado-dodgers should do to prepare?
- Can someone please babysit for Corin so that Sleater-Kinney can put out another album?
How can I meet Vidoop Troop #3?
Well, the place to meet and greet the past two troops seems as good of a place as any don’t you think? C’mon down to Beer and Blog on Friday afternoon. We’ll be back at one of our favorite haunts: the Green Dragon. That’s right. Not that other place. The Green Dragon. You know. The one where they have more than one bartender? Yeah, that one. Let me give you one more nemonic device to remember that: Green Dragon.
And no Justin Kistner, this week. And no substitute appointed.
Looking forward to seeing you and the last flight of the Vidoopers there.
The Internet Strategy Forum Summit, the homegrown Portland event that focuses on “a diverse array of important and complementary strategy areas including general digital strategy, social media strategy, personalized marketing, e-commerce, email marketing and customer metrics,” is drawing ever closer. Only a few weeks remain until the fifth incarnation of the event, July 17 and 18.
This year’s Summit promises to draw a wide-range folks from out-of-town. But more importantly, it’s drawing an all-star line up of speakers, including:
- Nancy Bhagat, Vice President, Sales and Marketing Group, Intel
- Charlene Li, Vice President & Principal Analyst, Forrester Research
- Shane O’Neill, Chief Technology Officer, Fandango
- Mike Moran, Distinguished Engineer, IBM, author
- David Placier, Vice President, Consumer Insights & Marketing, Disney Online
- Geoffrey Ramsey, Co-founder & CEO, eMarketer
- Chris Shimojima, Vice President, Global Digital Commerce, Nike
- Daniel Stickel, new CEO, WebTrends (formerly with Google)
But it’s not just the Summit that’s gaining traction. The Internet Strategy Forum (ISF), the group of Internet professionals on the corporate side of the desk for which the Summit serves as an opportune annual meeting, has been growing by leaps and bounds. In fact the ISF is on track to double its membership—doubling since December 2007.
Considering that it took the organization three-and-a-half years to grow to 850 screened members, adding another 850 in six months is impressive, to say the least.
Interested in attending the Internet Strategy Forum Summit and getting a chance to see all the cool folks listed above, firsthand? You’re in luck. Silicon Florist readers are entitled to a 10% discount on their Internet Strategy Forum Summit registration. Simply enter the discount code FLORIST.