Meet: Big Idea Bash, January 30

Credit Suisse is looking to help the Portland-area entrepreneurs and investors get some ideas flowing by hosting the “Big Idea Bash,” which is being billed as an event “where big ideas are shared and business is ignited.”

Enjoy drinks and food on us while initiating conversations with some of the brightest business minds in the Northwest. Now is the time to make partnerships and grow your business. It’s set to be the business event of the year.

The Big Idea Bash will be held Wednesday, January 30, 2008, from 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM, in the Gerding Theater at the Armory. To RSVP, visit the Big Idea Bash page on Upcoming.

[Update] I’ve also received word that Hopworks will be there with a sampling of sustainable local breweries and wineries.

(Hat tip to Marshall Kirkpatrick)

Portland Start-up Index: Is your site there?

Given that I’m still happily digging out from an avalanche of new Twitter followers, I’m a little tardy on reporting the news.

So, a number of folks were kind enough to send me links to TechvibesPortland Start-up Index,” a list of Portland-based startups ranked by averaging their Alexa and Compete ratings.

According to the post, they chose the Rose City because:

Portland’s unique culture, combined with its proximity to Seattle and Silicon Valley make it fertile ground for start-ups.

The list features an apples and oranges combination of both companies and products (which, quite honestly, isn’t immediately obvious to people who don’t obsess over monitor this stuff as actively as I do). So, companies with multiple products—but only one Web site—like Earth Class Mail (#5) (which unfortunately moved to Seattle to attract funding) and Kryptiq (#20) are mixed in with site-specific products like Matt King‘s Knitmap (#8) and JanRain‘s Pibb (#10).

SplashCast tops the list, with I Want Sandy and MyOpenID rounding out the top three.

Values of n garnered two spots on the index with I Want Sandy and Stikkit (#6). As did JanRain, with MyOpenID and Pibb.

Some notable sites conspicuously absent from the list include Jive Software, Platial, Unthirsty, and AboutUs. But commenters are already noting some of these exclusions.

Techvibes plans to update the list on a regular basis. And, I’m looking forward to seeing a few more of you folks on it, the next time around. Please comment on the post (as a number of folks already have) to ensure that your product or site is listed.

(Hat tip to Mike Berkley, Adam DuVander, and Ben Parzybok)

SXSW field trip for Portland Web Innovators

Planning to travel down south to Austin, Texas, for South-by-Southwest (SXSW)? Join the club. For breakfast. No, I mean literally.

Adam DuVander of Portland Web Innovators has set up a breakfast meeting for Portland folks who will be in town. If you’re at SXSW, this will be a great opportunity to see some familiar faces and compare notes before heading to the second set of panels.

Interested? RSVP on Upcoming.

Portland a-Twitter, an editorial opinion

While I’m not one of the old guard in terms of Twitter usage (I’m somewhere around user 1,340,521), I am a big fan of the service.

Twitter, in fact, was one of the motivating factors for starting the Silicon Florist in the first place. Because, via Twitter, I was hearing about a bunch of cool things happening in the Silicon Forest. But I wasn’t seeing anyone covering them for a wider audience.

And, hence, the seed was planted.

So, why do you care? Well, turns out that there is a very vibrant Twitter community here in Portland. I’m following more than 500 folks in the Silicon Forest on Twitter, as we speak. And it’s a great resource for staying in tune with what’s happening around here.

Now, that type of following isn’t for everyone. That’s for sure. But, nonetheless, I would encourage you to give Twitter a shot, if only to pitch me story ideas.

Getting started is easy.

  1. Register for an account at Twitter
  2. Type something in the “What are you doing?” box

Congrats! You’re on Twitter!

Now, let’s move on to some “advanced use.” Start following some people and getting into the conversation. Right off the bat, I would recommend a few of my Portland favorites Marshall Kirkpatrick, Josh Bancroft, Scott Kveton, Jason Grigsby, Raven Zachary, Aaron Hockley, Betsy Richter, Peat Bakke, Jake Kuramoto, Jason Harris, Katherine Gray, Josh Pyles, Audrey Eschright, Ignite Portland, Portland on Fire, and… honestly I could go on and on. (“And I love each and every single one of the folks I follow equally, for they are all special in their own right,” he said, hoping to deflect complaints for those he might have inadvertently missed.)

How do you follow people?

  1. Log into your shiny new Twitter account
  2. Click on the folks’ links above
  3. Click the big “Follow” button underneath each person’s picture

Voila!

You can even follow me and the Silicon Florist, if you like.

I know, I hear you. “How do I find more Portland people?” You are on the fast track, my friend. Bravo! (Or Brava! as the case may be.) There are a number of ways to find more Portland folks:

Oh, and last, but certainly not least: It’s polite etiquette to follow those who are following you on Twitter. So, if you follow me, I’ll follow you. And I encourage you to follow suit. One-way conversations are no fun.

So why the big Twitter push from the Silicon Florist?

It’s purely mercenary, I assure you.

I’m convinced that, for all the cool stuff I hear about from my current Twitter brood, there are ten times more Silicon Forest startup stories happening. I want to hear about them. And Twitter is a good way for me to stay in touch. Nuff said.

I’m looking forward to seeing you on Twitter.

Silicon Florist’s weekly links arrangement

Sometimes, a link says more than I could ever say. Here are some fragrant little buds I’ve found this week, courtesy of ma.gnolia.

Five Ways You Can Fall in Love With Tagging Again

Five Ways You Can Fall in Love With Tagging Again

Portland’s own Marshall Kirkpatrick had a great write up on tagging that inspired me to add the collection of links you’re currently reading. Now, thanks to Marshall, you can look forward to these Silicon-Forest-related links on a weekly basis.

Planet PDX

Planet PDX

My FeedBurner traffic reports pointed me to this little gem. It’s an aggregator of a number of Portland technology blogs created by Audrey Eschright.

Angel Oregon early bird registration closes January 4

Angel Oregon early bird registration closes January 4

Looking to compete in Angel Oregon? Cash in on the early bird discount by submitting your application before 5 PM, January 4th.

View all my bookmarks on Ma.gnolia

iStrands brings MyStrands to iPhone, iPod Touch

Corvallis-based MyStrands has announced that they are releasing their latest lab creation into the wild: iStrands.

What does iStrands do?

iStrands enables you to build your profile at http://www.mystrands.com in realtime while listening to your music on an iPhone or iPod touch.

If you’re up for jailbreaking your iPhone or iPod Touch (or if you already have), this may be an interesting application to try. If you do, I’d love to hear back about your experience.

Silicon Florist adds ma.gnolia to the arrangement

Based on advice from Portland-based social-media guru Marshall Kirkpatrick, I’ve been spending some quality time with ma.gnolia, this year. I’ve had a personal account for some time, but I never really grasped the power of the the tool until Marshall opened my eyes.

You’d think a florist would have been more into ma.gnolia. But so it goes.

So now, I’m in the midst of weaving some of those tools into the Silicon Florist. Like Baby’s Breath in a wedding bouquet, if you will. Or I guess, more accurately, like a magnolia, since that’s a flower.

So far there are two additions to the site, based on ma.gnolia’s offerings:

  1. Weekly link arrangement. Each week, I’ll be publishing a list of Silicon-Forest-oriented links that I’ve found compelling, but for whatever reason (likely lack of time or sheer volume of information) haven’t written up in the traditional fashion. Look for those arrangements to arrive on Thursday.
  2. Pitching the Florist using ma.gnolia (or del.icio.us). I’ve set up a Silicon Florist group on ma.gnolia and I think you should join (I was subsequently asked to setup a del.icio.us one, as well) . When you find something that you think everyone else should know about, save the link to ma.gnolia and share it with the Silicon Florist group (or send it to siliconflorist on del.icio.us). I’ll keep track of the incoming links and write them up (or add them to the weekly link arrangement).

Look for more features and insights as I work to make the Silicon Florist a more valuable resource for everyone. If you have any suggestions, please comment or drop me a line.

A (Portlander’s) profile a day, that’s all we ask

Portland-based Open-Source guru, BarCamp champion, and Legion of Tech‘er, Raven Zachary, has started the new year off on the right foot by launching Portland on Fire, a new site designed to profile one member of the Portland community each day.

Why? I’m glad you asked. (And I’m glad Raven provided an FAQ for this one.)

Current online social networks are ineffective channels to meet new people. This site will help to facilitate networking. I was working on a project in the late 90’s called ‘Great Minds’ – a global profile site of amazing people. This is an implementation of that idea focused around the amazing people in the Portland, Oregon, area.

For more information, visit Portland on Fire or see additional coverage of the effort in VanPortlander. To participate, prepare and submit your profile. Or, if you’re just looking forward to reading about some interesting folks, grab the Portland on Fire RSS feed or follow @portlandonfire on Twitter.

I’m looking forward to reading more about you one of these days.

MyStrands hits Times Square for New Year’s Eve

Corvallis-based MyStrands, makers of technology for tracking and sharing tastes, will be part of the big New Year’s Eve party in Times Square with a little network called MTV.

And, while that’s not in Oregon, I’m still covering it. Call me fickle. But that’s big news.

MyStrands partyStrands will power the event:

People in Times Square will be able to use their cell phones to send messages, vote to choose music videos and answer trivia questions on MTV’s 44 ½ giant HD screen in front of the MTV Studios.

Not planning to be in Times Square for the festivities? No worries. You can follow along at home, alone, in front of your computer, like me.

(Hat tip to Marshall Kirkpatrick

Meet: PDX Geek Holiday Extravaganza, December 29

Feeling a little light on holiday cheer and can’t quite wait until New Year’s Eve? You’re in luck. Because, filled with the holiday spirit, some folks have thrown together a spur-of-the-moment holiday event for all Portland-area geeks.

Join the gathering December 29 at from 6:17 until 10:03 at the McMenamins Blue Moon in Northwest Portland.

What constitutes a “geek”?

By “geek” I mean you have an iPhone or you Twitter or you attended (or plan to attend) an Ignite Portland or have a Facebook account or you’ve heard of the “Richter Scales” or even if you’re a geek and just visiting family (you guys know who you are) then you’re invited.

Sound interesting? Well, head on over to Upcoming and RSVP for the event. Oh, and as always, please feel free to spread the word.

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