Category: Portland

Walker Tracker puts walkiness next to (Greek) godliness

Portland-based Walker Tracker, a community for pedometer-wearing walkers to track their steps over time, has announced the release of a “pro” version of its service and a new feature for everyone: competition.

Walker Tracker Pro is a for-pay feature with a user-set pricing model, ala Radiohead’s In Rainbows and LibraryThing. Initial features include daily rank, charting aerobic steps, and priority email support. Paying for the service also removes ads.

As for competition:

You can now lay down the step gauntlet against any other walker on the site, and even challenge those who have yet to join.

No one in your league for competition? Well. then step it up to the next level by choosing to compete against a Greek god, then. (Personally, I’m waiting until my favorite Greek god, Hephaestus, shows up as an option.)

For more information, see Walker Tracker.

Meet: Portland Coders’ Bash 2007

In which language do you code? Ruby? PHP? Perl? C#? SQL? HTML? BASIC? COBOL? VAX/VMS? Something more obscure than that?

Tell you what, it doesn’t really matter. You could code in VisualBasic for Applications or Actionscript for all I care.

Why? Because a coder is a coder is a coder. Call yourself an engineer or developer or coder or whatever. We’re all the same.

And that’s why it’s so cool to stumble upon something like the Portland Coders’ Bash. It’s an event where any coder, regardless of language, can get together with other coders.

This December Multiple Portland programming users groups are going to combine meeting into on large meeting. This will be a socializing, festive atmosphere meant to allow the local group members to get to know each other a bit better.

The event is planned for December 11 at CubeSpace. For more information, see the see the PDX Groups wiki.

(Hat tip Selena)

Meet: BarCamp Portland informal meetup tonight

The regular—yet informal—BarCamp Portland meetup will be held tonight at 5:30. Jive Software will host the event.

The Portland meetups are intended to be a little less intense and more frequent than a full BarCamp Portland event. The intent is to get a group of cool people interested in technology together to chat over drinks on the fourth Thursday of every month. Anyone working in high-tech is welcome to attend.

To RSVP, visit the BarCamp Portland Upcoming page.

Greenlight Greater Portland names additional execs

I thought I would take the opportunity to introduce Greenlight Greater Portland, because, unfortunately, it’s highly unlikely that the image-based copy and PDF content on the Greenlight Greater Portland Web site will have the organization appearing in your search engine results anytime soon.

And to have you miss this organization would—quite honestly—be a shame.

Greenlight Greater Portland is charged with attracting businesses to the Silicon Forest. And that type of effort always bodes well for those of us in the startup environment. The rising tide floats all boats and whatnot.

Greenlight Greater Portland is a predominately private-sector group devoted to fostering the sustained economic vitality of the four-county region of Clackamas, Clark, Multnomah and Washington counties in northwest Oregon and southwest Washington. Led by the areas top business leaders, Greenlight Greater Portland introduces new businesses to the wide range of enviable resources here: industrial, human, natural, financial and technological.

Greenlight Greater Portland announced the appointment of a full-time CEO earlier this year. Now, they’ve added a vice president of “research and business attraction” and a VP of marketing, who will no doubt work to improve the Web site, he said in a hopeful voice. [Update] And hope continues to flourish as Portlandville posts some well wishing and insight on the new VP of Marketing, Gillian Floren.

For more information, visit the Greenlight Greater Portland Web site or see previous coverage from Oregon Startups. To learn more about the new execs, read the press release or see the coverage in The Oregonian.

Stuff I missed: KnitMap

[Editor’s note: Sometimes, the Portland startup tech news isn’t exactly “hopping.” And it’s at those points that I start sweating. What am I going to write? Isn’t anything happening? Where is everybody? Why isn’t anyone blogging about anything? Where are my loyal tipsters? Why hast thou forsaken me?

And then, I go breathe into a paper bag for a few minutes. And try to find my happy place.

Calm restored. I start digging. Because—obviously—there’s a ton of stuff happening here in the Rose City, and I likely miss as much as the next person. So I dig a bit, and I find stuff that was supposed to find a while ago. But I’m just finding it now. And I’m hoping that if it’s new to me, then maybe it’s new to you too.]

Take KnitMap. Totally missed it. According to the KnitMap blog, it looks like it launched in September.

Now, as a good number of you know, there’s a huge knitting-and-blogging-synchronicity thing going on here in good ol’ PDX. And Twittering. A lot of those knitters use Twitter, too.

I can’t explain it. It’s just there. Maybe it’s a making-things-with-your-hands thing. I don’t know. It’s just big.

So knitting tech is big here. And helping knitters with tech is, therefore, big too.

And that’s where KnitMap comes into the picture. KnitMap was developed by map-master Matt King of Unthirsty and TwitterWhere fame.

KnitMap is a Yarn Store finder. It’s a site that catalogues and maps the locations of retail shops that sell yarn, knitting supplies and knitting accessories. You can search to find these locations in the US, Canada, UK and most of Europe. Its anywhere that Google maps will work, and the list is growing everyday! Once you’ve found a shop, you can rate it’s attributes, leave comments, upload photos, and add it to your Favorites.

For more information or to see if your favorite yarn store is listed, visit KnitMap.

MomHub brings kid-friendly Portland to the forefront

MomHubThanks to Twitter and actually meeting some folks in person, I’m well aware that children are a common ailment blessing among Silicon Florist readers. And even the folks without kids—to a person—are aware that children exist.

So I thought everyone would be happy to read about the launch of a new startup focusing on the parents of the smaller set.

Portland-based MomHub just came out of pseudo-stealth mode and is beginning to promote its mom-helping services. At first blush, it shows the promise of being a valuable assistant in helping today’s overly busy moms sync up with other overly busy moms on things like kid-friendly meeting spots and helpful products:

As active playgroup participants, the founders observed the power of word-of-mouth advice that is exchanged between parents about helpful tips, such as a new coffee shop to visit or a new stroller to check out. Every parent seemed to have his or her special stash of information and no central place to share it in an effective way. MomHub was created to make it easier for local parents to exchange this type of information beyond the usual bulletin board or forum.

The current version of the service combines social networking and ratings, making finding kid-friendly spots and researching potential get-togethers a great deal easier.

Not a fan of micro-humans? MomHub works for you, too. Just check the board to determine the popular spots that are likely to be overrun with little ones. (Laurelwood, anyone?) And then steer clear. See? Win-win.

And, don’t feel left out, dads. There’s a DadHub, too.

MomHub is a central resource for moms to find the local groups, activities, places and products that can make their life easier or their day more entertaining. MomHub enables moms to share their local knowledge and insights. MomHub was created by a small team of parents in Portland, Oregon. It is free for moms and groups to use and is supported by local and national advertisers. For more information or to register, visit MomHub.

Irony: I want Sandy launches, and I need a reminder to cover it

Apparently, I need I want Sandy to remind me that I want Sandy has launched. (In my own defense, I follow both Sandy’s blog and the Values of n blog. But both were strangely silent about the release.) I just happened to stumble upon a Web Worker Daily post on I want Sandy as I was catching up on feeds.

So from the better late than never file…

Portland-based Values of n, makers of the popular Stikkit thinking sticky notes, have launched their latest application, I want Sandy, an anthropomorphoic personal assistant based on Stikkit technology.

Sandy was designed to work in conjunction with existing tools to help you remember what you need to do. Interacting with her is as easy as firing off some “Remind me…” emails.

Working with me is as simple as sending me email. There’s nothing to download, install, or configure. I live in your address book alongside everyone else you know and email.

You write to me at a special email address, get my attention with a few simple keywords, and I’ll take it from there.

When you tell me about appointments, to-dos, and contacts, my replies come with attachments you can click to add to your calendar, to-do list, or address book. You can even introduce me to your calendar so that everything you tell me shows up there automatically.

For more information or to sign up, visit Sandy at I want Sandy. Or see additional coverage from Mashable (sneakily hidden under the uri of “I want Sally”).

iovation lands $10 million from Intel Capital

iovation, a Portland-based startup that focuses on combating online fraud—and which also allows you to begin sentences with a lower-case letter—has announced a new round of funding, led by a $10 million investment from Intel Capital. The total round sits at $15 million.

iovation, headquartered in Portland, Oregon pioneered the use of device reputation for managing online fraud, abusive behavior and multi-factor authentication. Today, iovation manages the reputation of millions of Internet-enabled devices worldwide, allowing its customers to control online fraud and abuse while benefiting from sharing device reputation intelligence. For more information on iovation and the company’s products, visit www.iovation.com.

(Hat tip Silicon Forest)

Urban Drinks adds happy hours within stumbling distance

[Insert prerequisite “more bars per capita” comment here], so it comes as no surprise that the happy-hour-location-service market is quite competitive here in PDX. To keep raising the—ahem—bar,  Portland-based Urban Drinks has just announced the addition of proximity intelligence to its service.

With Urban Drinks new feature, not only can you zero-in on a happy hour, but should it be too crowded—or worse yet, completely dead—you can now see the five happy hours within stumbling distance of your chosen locale.

For example, if you visit the soon to be Deschutes Brewpub at UrbanDrinks, you will see a list of five happy hours that are currently going on in the area. If no happy hours are currently happening at the time of your visit, then five happy hours that are going on later in the day will be provided. UrbanDrinks also plans on introducing an address field that will allow you to enter or bookmark your address to which a list of the closest happy hours will be displayed.

For more information or to try the service, visit Urban Drinks.

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.

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