Category Archives: Gnomedex

Life is in Perpetual Beta During Gnomedex


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Melissa Pierce is the producer of the interview documentary, Life In Perpetual Beta. Every day, she asks people questions to help them discover who they are and what they are passionate about doing, and then help them do just that, because that’s what she’s passionate about. She was kind enough to accept our request to speak about her project during Gnomedex this year.

Life In Perpetual Beta is about listening to your authentic self, unleashing your creativity, and living in the moment, every moment. It’s a documentary told by everyday people, about how technology has changed the way we think about ourselves and enabled our lives to be more spontaneous and less planned.

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What Does the Future of Mobile Development Hold?


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During Gnomedex, we learned about the future of mobile technology. Amy Karlson is a researcher in the Computational User Experiences (CUE) subgroup of the Visualization and Interaction for Business and Entertainment (VIBE) research area at Microsoft Research, focusing on HCI and user experiences within mobile and multi-device environments.

She received a B.A. and M.S. in Computer Science from Johns Hopkins University. She received her Ph.D. from University of Maryland, College Park in Computer Science, where she specialized in HCI and one-handed interaction with touchscreen-based mobile devices, and for which she was awarded a Microsoft LiveLabs Fellowship. Prior to earning her Ph.D., Ms. Karlson worked for several years as a research scientist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory.

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What is a Tech Maven?


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Women in top technology positions are scarce — but they’re out there. They just need a safe space to rock out, rally the troops, and share success stories. The vision for Tech Mavens is to create a crashpad. A launchpad. An inspiration station, advice center, event hub and force for social change.

Shauna Causey – Her pervious roster includes the Comcast, FOX, Fox Sports Net and the Seattle Mariners Baseball Team. She is the creator behind Voluntweetup, she leads Twestival Seattle, speaks around the country helping non-profits with social media and serves as the Vice President for the Social Media Club Seattle board of directors. In the last year, Shauna has been featured in TechFlash as one of the 100 Top Women in Tech, as well as in The Los Angeles Times and The Huffington Post.

Melody Biringer – From strawberry shortcake to home furnishings to a fitness business, she has trotted down virtually every entrepreneurial trail in existence. With 23 business ventures under her belt — a few of them even successful! — you might call her a lifelong “start-up junkie.” She’s the founder of the CRAVEcompany, which connects savvy business owners with stylish consumers through networking events, symposiums and a series of smash-hit city guides. Melody was recently featured on PDXfm.com and on the cover article of Seattle Woman Magazine.

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Tim Hwang Brought Web Ecology to Gnomedex


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Tim Hwang is the founder and current director of the Web Ecology Project, a research community dedicated to building an applied science around measuring and influencing the system-wide flows of culture and patterns of community formation online. He is also currently working on Robot, Robot, and Hwang — a legal startup that seeks to bring quantitative analysis and geek methods to the practice of law.

On the side, he is the creator of ROFLCon, a series of conferences celebrating and examining internet culture and celebrity. You can follow everything he’s doing on Twitter at @timhwang

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InterConnection Connects Communities at Gnomedex


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InterConnection provides computers to under-served people and communities around the world. From their Seattle-based computer recycling and reuse programs to schools and organizations far and wide, they make a connection that makes a difference. They create opportunity through computer reuse.

Company founder and director Charles Brennick was a presenter on the Gnomedex stage, teaching all of us what we should be doing with the old machines lying around the house and garage.

Donating your old machines and smartphones is safe and secure. All of your data is securely wiped from hard drives using Department of Defense standards. You’ll get a tax break when you donate equipment, since InterConnection is a certified 501c3 nonprofit organization. They’ll gladly give you a receipt when you drop something off to them.

By recycling your old stuff, you’re helping the planet. No parts end up sitting in a landfill somewhere. The company is also helping people in the community by providing valuable hardware skills training to local low-income volunteers through their computer reuse program. Those computers are then sent to schools and organizations within under-served communities worldwide.

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The People of Gnomedex


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Michael Foley is one of those people that everyone loves to stop and talk with. We’re very grateful for that fact, since he managed to interview many of the movers and shakers who attended Gnomedex last month. Michael was kind enough to give us his raw footage, and Uncle John worked his magic to stitch it all together. Ladies and germs, meet the people of Gnomedex!

  • Tac Anderson – “The most diverse and coolest group of speakers anywhere.”
  • Steve Sorbo – “Gnomedex is about education in the world of social media.”
  • Christopher Burgess – “I come to Gnomedex because out of hundreds of conferences I attend, this is the best .It’s the most humanitarian and technological event of its kind. When you leave here, you feel as though you can change the world.”
  • Kristen Mitchell – “Gnomedex was the first conference I ever attended in association with my online identity. I was happy to feel as though I was amongst family.”
  • Kat Armstrong – “It’s impossible to put into words what Gnomedex is like. Being here – being a part of this – WILL change your life in some way.”
  • Brian Eisenberg – “I come to Gnomedex to meet people and have amazing conversations.”
  • Kenji Onozawa – “Gnomedex has great content, but I love the conversation in the hallways the most. This event attracts an awesome array of people.”
  • Jeff Shuey – “There are incredible people involved in this event, from speakers to volunteers to attendees.”
  • Jeris JC Miller – “Chris has done an amazing job at curating who I feel are some of the most innovative speakers in technology and the social media space.”
  • Pete Voss – “This was my first Gnomedex. A lot of past attendees recommended I be here, so here I am!”
  • Veronica Wei Sopher – “I come here to get outside of my own thinking. I love to see what others are doing and learning. It gives me fresh perspective in my world.”
  • Jamie Nelson – “I come here to find out what’s going on in the geek world, and get an idea as to what is coming over the horizon.”
  • David Hoang – “This was my first time attending Gnomedex. I wanted to be here, because I heard it’s a great place to meet innovative thinkers.”
  • Lacy Kemp – “This conference has a very cool crowd. It’s very different from other conferences – it’s more human. The content is different. It’s less focused on narcissism and more focused on how to create a better you.”
  • Michelle Gamboa – “I volunteer at this event because it’s one of the places that I can meet amazing people and hear about the best ideas you’ll find anywhere.”
  • Richard Wood – “This was my first Gnomedex. I’ve been to a lot of events surrounding this event in the past few years. There’s always such a high amount of energy to the people involved in this conference. I wanted to be a part of that, and their ideas.”
  • Melissa Tizon – “I work with Swedish Hospital here in Seattle. We’re a non-profit hospital which loves technology. We’re using that to improve health care in the greater Seattle area.”
  • Kevin Urie – “I come to Gnomedex because the people are great and the topics are all over the place. It’s always interesting, and I learn something from everyone.”
  • Jen Joyce – “I come to Gnomedex because there are interesting people who attend. I love to learn new ideas from everyone.”
  • Heather Fernandez – “I’m here because I’ve never been. I’ve heard a lot of great things about this conference, so I knew I had to be here.”
  • Willow Brugh – “This was my first Gnomedex, and it’s been exciting. It’s not focused on one topic, and this is where true innovation lies.”
  • Joe Pirillo – “I’m Chris’ Dad, so I’m here to help out behind the scenes, but I also really just enjoy being here.”
  • Karianne Stinson – “Gnomedex is a conference where people talk about what they’re actually DOING, versus people telling about their grand ideas.”
  • Shauna Causey – “I love to hang out with geeks because I am a wannabe geek. Gnomedex rocks for that.”
  • Greg Young – “Television is moving more online every day. I like to keep up with current trends to see how new things can be incorporated into video and television.”
  • Liana Shanes – “I volunteer with Gnomedex because Chris always brings amazing content which helps me learn about things I would never have thought of before.”
  • Maya Bisineer – “The people here are brilliant, and the presentations are all intelligent.”
  • Ken Yeung – “There are a lot of friends here at Gnomedex.”
  • Chris Pirillo – “I come here because my face is on all of the badges! I put this conference on because it started out as just a way for my community to get together. This is a chance, though, to inspire others no matter what type of work they do, or where their passions lie. The idea of Human Circuitry is that our humanity is further influenced by the proliferation of technology.”

Thank you again to Michael and Uncle John for all of their hard work putting this together. Thank you to everyone who participated!

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What Do You Think About Windows Phone 7?


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One of our sponsors during Gnomedex just happened to be the Windows Phone 7 team. Larry was on site manning the booth, showing off the device and letting people get their first hands-on look! It was announced today (finally!) that Windows Phone 7 will be released on October 11th.

Windows Phone 7 is the new mobile phone operating system from the folks at Microsoft. It has a completely different start screen, filled with what they call “Live Tiles.” These give you real-time important information, such as for weather and stock markets. You can customize your tiles to make them relevant to your life. For instance, Larry has a tile set up just for his wife. Anytime she updates one of her social networks, the tile will let him know right away. This appears to be a great way to keep track of the people you want to stay in touch with on a continual basis.

If you click on the People Hub, you will see all of the contacts in your social circle. You can click on them separately to find out what they’re up to, or choose to check out an overview from all of them.

Larry is a product manager for the Application Platform. They’re providing people the ability to create their own applications which leverage these same concepts. They’re giving devs a free copy of Visual Studio to build Windows Phone 7 apps. These apps will be the key to the succcess of the operating system.

The email and calendar service on Windows Phone 7 is being touted as the “best in class.” It’s tied in to Microsoft Exchange, which many of us (myself included!) use for business. Larry says that this phone represents a drastic change from the way Microsoft built phone systems in the past. Historically, they were focused on being a good partner and on delivering something that the OEM companies wanted to use. The problem with that is that while the people in Redmond love their various partners, it was taking too much away from the end user… from YOU.

There was zero control over what the end user was receiving. What Microsoft did was to take direct control over the user experience. The most important focus of the project was to deliver outstanding end user experience. Larry admits that Microsoft has had trouble in the past with focusing on something. Instead, they’ve been all over the map with various aspects of projects. Windows Phone 7 represents a very focused effort to bring you what it is you want in a phone.

The free developer tools are available on the Windows Phone site. If you already have Visual Studio, it will simply update your install to include the various elements you will need to develop apps for this phone. Apps are only available through the Windows Phone Marketplace, and revenue is earned in much the same way as with other phone platforms.

Have you taken a close look yet at what’s in store? What are your thoughts about Windows Phone 7 so far?

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Gnomedex Conference Reviews

With this year’s Gnomedex behind us, we’re starting to see the feedback from those of you who were with us. It’s important to remember that while no two people have the exact same experience when attending a conference, you all take something away that enriches your life. Take the time to read what others have to say about the event – you might learn something new.

If we happened to miss your post, please let us know and we’ll be happy to include a link to your thoughts.

Thank you once again to everyone who helped make this conference possible. From all accounts, this was the best of the series and we couldn’t have done it without you.

Step Back From the Baggage Claim at Gnomedex


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What happens when you take a step back? It’s very powerful and can change the world. A single example can make a huge difference in our businesses and our lives. When Jason Barger approached me to discuss his book, I begged him immediately to join us on the Gnomedex stage. This is what our conference is all about – changing the world one person… one day – one STEP BACK – at a time.

Step Back From the Baggage Claim is a movement to help effect change. In Jason’s own words: “Change begins from the ground up. The pressure underneath the wings has to be greater than the pressure above the wings. Change begins with singular moments. Change can begin at the baggage claim and carry into our everyday lives. Change begins with you and me.”

The book is powerful, and the inspiration behind it is even more so. I hope you’ll take the time in your life to step back – and to spread that message to others.

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Your Inner Geek Could Win an iPad

David Spark attended Gnomedex this year on behalf of Dice. He interviewed several people throughout the event, asking everyone the same question: “What makes you a true geek?” The answers were as varied as they could possibly be. My idea of what a geek is was reinforced by everyone who participated. You don’t have to be a technology buff to be a geek. A geek is someone who is passionate about something, whether that something is cars, technology, gardening or even swimming.

Do you think you are geekier than anyone in this video? You could win an iPad courtesy of Dice for telling your story. The deadline is today, so head over to their Facebook Page and enter now! After you “Like” the page, you will see a tab at the top called “Inner Geek.” Click there and tell your story. You could end up being the winner!

Thanks to David and the entire Dice crew for coming out to support us during Gnomedex. We had a great time talking with you!