Have a very happy Thanksgiving

Here’s hoping that all of those Silicon Forest startups, all the readers who make writing Silicon Florist such a pleasure, and anyone else within the range of my RSS feed has a very safe, happy, and relaxing Turkey and/or Tofurkey day.

Even startups need a few days off.

I’ll start rooting around again on Monday.

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.

People: Techpaulogy Biggs moves from Anvil to Jive

Paul Biggs has announced that he is leaving Anvil Media for a job at Jive Software. He will be serving as Jive‘s Online Marketing Manager (which will cross one position off that long list of open Jive positions):

I’m coming on board as the Online Marketing Manager, to help coordinate Web efforts to market Jive’s suite of products, as well as generally promote the benefits of collaboration software to bust information silos that have been built in a world of emails and redundant conversations.

For more information on the move and the new role, see Paul’s blog, Techpaulogy.

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.

OTBC looking to refill empty nest

The Beaverton-based Open Technology Business Center (OTBC) has recently seen two of its fledging startups—Remote Technologies and Earth Class Mail—leave the nest.

And because of those successful departures, the OTBC has found a bit of room on the ol’ floorplan.

What’s this mean for you? It means that if you’re an early stage high-tech or biotech startup looking for some digs, this could be a perfect match.

So let’s start this little dance, shall we?

To show off the facilities to prospective roomies and to provide some networking opportunities for everyone, the OTBC will be holding a catered open house on November 28:

At the open house, you’ll hear a brief overview of how OTBC helps startups, and you’ll have plenty of time to talk with some of our Entrepreneurs and Ventures in Residence to get the inside scoop on OTBC. We’ll provide munchies and beverages.

For more information on the open house or to RSVP, visit the OTBC Meetup page.

OTBC is a non-profit corporation that helps startup companies succeed with office infrastructure and coaching, advising, networking, entrepreneurship education, and consulting services. As a technology-focused business incubator, OTBC’s goal is to provide participating entrepreneurs and small start-up companies with access to industry leaders and coaches, extensive education programs, and office facilities designed to nurture the next wave of technology-driven companies in the region.

Pretend you were there: Attensa “RSS and attention” from Portland Web Innovators

Do (Apparently, my brain has already started its Friday.) Did you miss the latest Portland Web Innovators gathering with Attensa?

Fear not, gentle reader. Thanks to Dawn Foster, who was kind enough to capture video of the event, you’ll soon be espousing on RSS and attention with the best of them.

It’s Friday. Kick back and catch up by watching “RSS and Attention.” (Kindly hosted by Jive Software which, coincidentally, kindly hosted the event, as well.)

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.

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