If you haven’t talked to voice activated artificial intelligence by now, I’d be kinda surprised. You’ve got Siri, Alexa, Cortana… they’re all over the place. And always listening. But let’s be honest… they don’t always do what you want them to do. So if you’ve got an idea on how they could be better but you feel like you could use some guidance, you might be interested in Alexa Dev Day in Portland.
You’ve noticed it. It’s difficult not to. As Portland has grown in popularity and population, congestion, traffic, and even crowded public transit are becoming more the norm than the exception in the City of Roses. It impacts everyone. And rising housing costs only exacerbate the problem, as the distance between work and home continues to expand. If you run a business, you’re seeing the impact from a variety of angles, from consumers to employees—especially when one of the primary hiring promises has been Portland’s “livability.”
Whenever folks ask me for ways to test drive an idea or find cofounders, one of the programs that is always at the top of my list is Techstars Startup Weekend. Why? Because it’s a 54-hour sprint that gives you a ton of insights into what it takes to test an idea, recruit a team, and build a product—even if you’ve done it before. Your next opportunity to get that experience is Techstars Startup Weekend Eugene.
As a founder, you’re always looking for opportunities to promote your company. And locally, there are few opportunities as big as PitchfestNW, the pitch competition held as part of TechfestNW, Portland’s largest homegrown tech event. Plus, you get a free pass to the event.
So by now, you’ve all likely heard the news that AutoDesk is moving their Lake Oswego office to the Burnside Bridgehead in the Central Eastside Industrial District. That has prompted any number of folks to say to me, “Wait. AutoDesk has a Lake Oswego office?” But it also has a lot of folks asking for more details about AutoDesk and what they do. And now there’s an event to help answer some of those questions.
Portland is lucky to be home to one of the most impactful and growing events for black entrepreneurs, PitchBlack, a pitch competition that has featured local black founders for the past three years and has now expanded to other cities. But where did the concept get its start? Free Enterprise sat down with founder Stephen Green to get the story.
Think your startup belongs on a global stage? Of course you do. But it’s highly likely that other folks do as well. That’s why it makes sense to apply to competitions that let you take the stage and share your story. With that in mind, I’d like to remind you that the deadline for SXSW Accelerator Pitch Event applications is rapidly approaching.
Of the many things I love about the Portland startup community, one of my favorite things is how we’re more than willing to try models that have worked in other places. But if that model doesn’t work for us? We’ll switch it up. Which is exactly what’s happening with 1 Million Cups Portland.