In this post 2012 hackNY Fellow Daniel Lobato describes the June 2012 New York Tech Meetup. Daniel was raised in Europe and moved 2 years ago to California to go to college.
The rise of New York as a technological hub that will challenge the Silicon Valley at some point is a fact that has been really interesting to people in the startup community for several years. Now after the tremendous effort that everyone in the scene has done, it is an undeniable reality that nothing compares to NYC aside from Silicon Valley when it comes to startup ecosystems. Be it Boston on the east, Austin or Seattle on the west, they are still running against two really big ‘players’. My personal view on this was that companies in New York benefit from having such a diverse city with thousands of the most talented people in the world, while the valley has its own unique flavor where most of the people there are related with technology in some way or another. I do not really believe that it is posible to replicate what happened in that strip under San Francisco but that is not necessarily bad. What I thought, though, was that the difference between these personality traits between the two areas, would make people be a lot more oriented towards different things. Even though what happens on the valley usually starts oriented towards geeky, valley-like people, they have a great talent to make that appealing for the rest of the world.
And here is where NY Tech meetup plays a vital role, along with other projects that are setting apart New York as a really appealing place for engineers and computer scientists from all around the world to work at (outside of Wall Street-like jobs). To me, coming from a fairly different background than most of the fellows (raised in Spain, been in Europe for most of my life until I moved to California for college) it really showed me that people here are taking the real feedback this city provides — not the sugar coated one that they would get at the valley — and using it for good.
The first time I heard about NY Tech meetup was when I was checking meetup.com for some events for engineers. It showed up as one of the featured events but when I opened it I thought that it would be too non-technical for me. After some days, Evan Korth, co-founder of hackNY and part of the board of directors of NY Tech meetup sent an email to all of us fellows inviting us to come and take a sneak peek at the best growing startups in New York. People told me it was mostly hit or miss but even if it is, I honestly think it was a real hit last time. The venue is really impressive, I think the theater can hold up to eight hundred people, and it was completely sold out. They introduced the event to all the newcomers and in a nutshell, around ten startups were showcasing their products to an audience highly interested in their products. Also they gave us hackNY Fellows a shout out for attending the event. It was a little daunting to be applauded by such a big crowd, but it was good to hear we are good assets for the city tech scene. I could spot some investors, as well as some other computer scientists, mostly people in this industry willing to make connections and spend a great evening. After the initial presentation, blazing fast presentations for all the startups started. Each of them has five to ten minutes to show their product, and right after three of them are done with the presentation, there is Q&A for the audience. Even though all of them were real early-stage startups, they had truly amazing products, it is unfair not to mention them all as none of them was bad at all, but I would like to talk about the four ones that really struck me for very different reasons.
Cable TV everywhere, seamless experience. TV might be dead for some people but there is still a gigantic market there, and players like nimbleTV are decided to take it. Just check out their video, basically imagine you could watch any TV channel, HD definition, anywhere, on any device. And for cheap. They did it.
Have you been through the hassle of organizing a wedding? It is a time sink, just because it is particularly complex to find everything about it in one place. Instead, you have to go and ask around a humongous area to find what you want. These guys experienced it themselves, told us, and fixed it.
Honestly, even though I am not interested on the stock market anymore, I cared a lot about it before and I can tell estimize is not only going to generate a huge revenue very quickly but it can potentially affect a huge market as the financial estimates are. They probably do not have the best execution yet, then again their estimates matches these of Wall Street private estimators with more than a 60% accuracy. The idea is just crazy good, if they execute well, I can expect to meet the founders vacationing in Bora Bora every weekend.
They already have a huge user base, a number of big artists signed up, success is just around the corner for them. For all of you hip hop addicts, they have people and even the artists themselves explaining their obscure lyrics. Using a wikipedia-like approach, these verses will no longer be unintelligible again. These guys did a really fun presentation too.
After the meetup, there is an afterparty for those who like networking. It seemed to be really interesting but we had a dinner instead with some of the fellows, previous fellows, and obviously Evan, Chris and Manya. All in all, I will make sure not to miss next NYTM!