Category: Awards

All hail Ontier, DEMOgod

OntierAs I mentioned on Monday, local stealth startup Ontier was selected to unveil their product, Pixetell, at DEMO09, one of the premier venues for showcasing new—and previously unseen—technology.

As any number of applicants can tell you, it’s a coup to even be selected to appear on the DEMO stage. So Ontier was way ahead of the game by being one of the only Northwest companies selected.

And anyone who has stood on the DEMO stage can tell you that it can be one of the most nerve-wracking experiences—even for the most seasoned presenter. Making it through the five minutes is an accomplishment in and of itself.

So, they got selected. And they presented well. End of story, right? Not quite.

Ontier didn’t stop there. No, no. Just leave it to the Portland types to go and make us even more proud.

Not only did Ontier lead off the presentations, they led off by knocking it out of the park: Ontier has been named one of the DEMOgods for DEMO 09.

What’s a DEMOgod?

Each conference DEMO unveils a new class of the industry’s upcoming technologies, and it always proves difficult to pick and choose the most exceptional products. The desirable DEMOgod Awards are given to those that show outstanding potential to succeed in the market while motivating and exciting the DEMO audience.

Ontier was one of seven companies selected for the honor.

That makes this worth one more look.

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COLOURlovers: Portland site could be one of the top 50 on the Web

COLOURloversPortland-based COLOURlovers has had quite a run as of late. Nominated for a Webby twice in a row. Winning a WebVisions Web Visionary Award. And now this: COLOURlovers has been nominated as one of the top 50 sites for 2008 by Time Magazine.

Now, I was Time Magazine’s Person of the Year a couple of years back (as were you), so I know what type of notoriety this type of distinction can deliver. Why not give COLOURlovers a fighting chance?

I’m not advising you to stuff the ballot box or anything. But if you’re a fan of COLOURlovers, you should definitely take a couple of seconds to vote.

WebWare 100 loves Sandy

SandyEveryone’s favorite anthropomorphic digital assistant, Sandy—the smartest hire Portland-based Values of n has ever made—is now even more popular, given that she’s been named as one of the WebWare 100.

I hope she’ll still take my tweets.

While much of Sandy’s personality has fallen by the wayside in the WebWare write-up, I’m including it for those of you who haven’t yet had the pleasure of meeting Sandy:

[S]imply add “her” as an e-mail contact to get started. Sending Sandy an e-mail with a small message will have the system scan what you wrote and convert into an e-mail reminder or calendar appointment that will be sent back to you at whatever time you note. It also has been designed to work with the popular microblogging service Twitter, letting users remotely set reminders while away from their regular e-mail.

At first blush, Sandy appears to the only Portland type to get a nod, although Vimeo, whose Dalas Verdugo lives here in Portland, also received the honor of being named to the list.

If you happen to see a Silicon Forest based on company on the WebWare 100 winners list that I overlooked, please let me know.

Yes, yes. I’m asking you to help me out. I’d really appreciate another set of eyes. Go to it, cub reporter!

Webvisionary Awards to coincide with WebVisions 2008

There’s a new award in town. Literally. Thanks to the Portland-creative triumvirate of WebVisions, Pop Art and 52 Ltd announcing the Webvisionary Awards, a new award designed to highlight exceptional work online. Winners are to be announced on the first night of the WebVisions 2008 conference.

The first annual Webvisionary Awards is accepting submissions of outstanding work in a range of categories, from mashups and pimped out personal pages to advertising and mobile. Entries must be submitted by April 30th and there will be a fee of $15 per submission.

The categories are extremely broad, so it will be interesting to see where this goes.

  1. Advertising
  2. Interactive Campaign
  3. Business
  4. Viral
  5. Experimental
  6. Community
  7. Blog
  8. Mobile
  9. Technical Achievement
  10. Web Application
  11. Mashup
  12. Games
  13. Video/Motion
  14. Educational / Resource
  15. Pimped Out Personal Page
  16. Student
  17. Best of Show

And while I’m not much of one for the flash mob mentality, I, for one, think it would be really nice to see some of the cool Portland companies around here get some of the recognition they deserve. Especially given the crowd that WebVisions tends to draw to town.

For more information on the award categories or to nominate your favorites, visit the Webvisionary Awards.

COLOURlovers chases Webby for the second year in a row

How’s this for a little local color? Err… colour? (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

Portland-based COLOURlovers, the community site that allows those enamored with hues and saturation to share their palette creations and ideas with the artistic community worldwide, has been nominated for the Webby AwardsBest Community Website” for the second year in a row.

What are the Webby Awards? They’re awards that are so cool they actually survived the dotbomb implosion:

Hailed as the “Oscars of the Internet” by the New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet, including Websites, interactive advertising, online film and video, and mobile Websites. The Webby Awards is presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, a 550-person judging academy whose members include Internet co-inventor Vinton Cerf, R/GA’s Chief Bob Greenberg, “Simpson’s” creator [and Oregonian, I might add] Matt Groening, Arianna Huffington, and Harvey Weinstein.

If you’re like me (and I know you are), I’d really like to see a Portland site walking away with one of these awards. Especially given that this is COLOURlovers’ second nomination.

But they’ve got some tough competition. Some would call it “insurmountable.” I mean, they’re up against the likes of del.icio.us, Flickr, and StumbleUpon. And I know “the nomination is an honor in and of itself.” But wouldn’t be nice to give COLOURlovers a fighting chance?

Well, you can. Through the “People’s Voice” voting.

That’s right friends. American-Idol-esque voting has permeated the Webbys, as well.

So, if you haven’t visited before, swing by COLOURlovers and take a look. They boast and extremely active community in an extremely niche space. And they’re just darn pretty, to boot.

So, if you like what you see, consider giving them your “People’s Voice” vote. And spreading a little of that Portland hometown spirit.

Power to the people. The Portland people. If you catch my drift.

MyStrands wants to invest $100,000 in your startup

Corvallis-based MyStrands has just announced a program designed to find the best early-stage startup focused on “recommendation” technologies. And, once found, to fund that startup to the tune of 6-figures of investment.

The $100,000 investment prize will be awarded to:

[T]he best early-stage project in the area of recommendation technologies, considering the technology, business opportunity and team behind the project (without limitations as to which field the technology is applied).

This is a worldwide competition, but I’m confident that some of you Portland and Silicon Forest types—side project or otherwise—have got some cool technology that has a chance of winning this thing.

Why not give it a shot?

All Proposals will be judged using the following judging criteria: (a) implementation and integration of recommendation technologies, (b) originality and creativity, (c) likelihood of long-term success and scalability, (d) effectiveness in addressing a need in the marketplace, and (e) team bios.

Get into the finals and you’re off to Switzerland to present.

Five Finalists will be invited to present their projects during the ACM Conference on Recommender Systems (RecSys08) next October 23rd to 25th, 2008 in Lausanne, Switzerland. Finalists will be announced on October 6th.

So what are you waiting for? I think you can win this. And I’m sure the investment would help make your dream a reality. And if you’re not going to do it, then maybe our idea for Portland Startup Weekend should be based on recommendation technology.

Entries will be accepted until September 15, 2008.

For more information on the contest and requirements, see MyStrands’ post on the contest.

[Update: I just noticed that ReadWrite Web has posted on the contest, as well, encouraging MyStrands to continue its work in implementing open data standards.]

Jive Clearspace X snags InfoWorld award

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: Those Jive folks should be planning for a larger trophy case.

I just learned—via Dawn Foster’s Fast Wonder—that Portland-based Jive Software’s Clearspace X has been named the Best Community Platform for 2008 in InfoWorld’s annual “Technology of the Year” awards.

How are the awards selected?

Top picks of InfoWorld Test Center editors and reviewers, these Technology of the Year award winners represent the best business process management system, best enterprise service bus, best database middleware, and the best SaaS collaboration and community platforms we tested in 2007.

For more information on Clearspace X, visit Jive Software. [Update] Or visit Jive Software’s blog.

Jive’s new space should include a bigger trophy case

Portland-based Jive Software continues on its award-winning roll. First, they walked away with a cash prize of $15 million from Sequoia. Then, they took home the OEN Entrepreneur Award. Now, they’ve walked away with top honors at Venture NW for “Outstanding Achievement.”

“As winners of the Outstanding Achievement Awards, Jive Software and nLIGHT represent the high caliber of companies and entrepreneurs in this region. These are two globally competitive companies that have proven that they are attractive to investors anywhere,” said Wayne Embree, managing partner of Reference Capital Management, LLC and Chairman of Venture Northwest 2007. “They remind us what is possible with the support from programs such as Oregon Entrepreneurs Network and Venture Northwest.”

Who else won? If the quotes are any indication, it sounds like Portland may be a winner, as well. If only in getting a little more of the entrepreneurial and venture-capitalistic attention and affection it so rightly deserves.

“Moving our company to Portland was one of the best business decisions we ever made. We quickly discovered that Portland has an immensely supportive entrepreneurial community and it has provided our company with a great environment in which to grow,” said Jive Software CEO, Dave Hersh. “Being chosen to receive this award is a great honor.”

I remain hopeful that this sort of Portland praise will begin to cut down on some of the location-related difficulties Silicon Forest startups are encountering as they pursue funding.

Jive Software wins 14th Annual Oregon Entrepreneur Network (OEN) award

Word around the (Twitter) campfire is that Jive has walked away with the top honors at the Oregon Entrepreneur Network’s (OEN) 14th Annual Entrepreneurship awards. [Update] Jason Grigsby has published the complete OEN-award-winners list on User First Web. [Update 2] And the OEN has dropped a release, announcing the winners.

The statewide entrepreneurial community’s biggest gathering of the year will be the 2007 OEN Entrepreneurship Awards — the 14th annual celebration of the entrepreneurial spirit in action throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington.

The Oregon Entrepreneurs Network (OEN) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the climate for emerging, growth-oriented companies across Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. OEN helps improve the flow of ideas, services, and capital to entrepreneurs and helps connect companies to expertise and other resources they need to grow their business. Together, the nearly 2,500 members strive to aid the growth and development of a healthy, diversified Oregon economy with a new generation of entrepreneurial leaders.

This is hot off the… well, it’s not even on the presses yet, so I’ll update this post with additional links as news becomes available.

(Hat tip Jason Grigsby)

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