After having spent the majority of my time in NYC over the past months, I've experienced some impressive conferences, talks, Meetups and gatherings. One such gathering, held at a three story penthouse in Tribeca, was dubbed the Founder's Club. Or:
a group of NYC Internet founders and CEOs promoting the start-up spirit in Silicon Alley.
It was nice meeting blip.tv's Dina Kaplan, Fast Company's Michael Prospero and artist Scott Draves, a highly regarded geek artiste whose work adorns the walls of Google's Mountainview HQ. Scott recently moved his life from San Francisco to NYC to make it all happen. I told him that I could relate to that, firsthand (although I'm originally from the East coast, and he's not).
A few other organizations, and their leaders/evangelists, I chatted up:
Ventbox's Nate Westheimer
Ventbox is, as you might guess, a place to vent on the web. But it's more than that - it's social ranting, if you will. Nate, aka VentMan, sees many other applications for the service, particularly within corporations (don't employees like to vent?). I told him it's a pretty cool knowledge management tool he's got on his hands. Nate wins best dressed founder of the evening, simply because he was the only 20-something (or any age, actually) that showed up in a bow tie. And, it worked.
Noel 'NoNeck' Hidago:
What to say about Noel Hidago, other than once you meet him, it's not likely you'll forget him. Filled with passion (and I mean cup-runneth-over filled not just to-the-brim filled), Noel will speak quite intelligently - yet not without flair - about technology and culture, politics and co-working, entrepreneurship and unconferencing. His latest project, called the Luck of Seven, is an "open source, around the world project" where:
...for seven months, he will traverse the seven continents, dive into the seven oceans, and attempt to visit the seven ancient wonders of the world. Using a wiki, noneck will harness the collective knowledge of the globe, and report weekly on seven topics of freedom. Before he leaves, he is fundraising US$11.11 from 700 global residents.
Trickle Up's Jesse Greendyk
Trickle Up is a non-profit which has been around, for 27 years to be precise. Jesse explained the core focus of the organization, microfinancing the world's lowest income, would-be entrepreneurs, giving them their 'first steps out of poverty.' They do this by
... providing conditional seed capital, business training, and relevant support services essential to the launch or expansion of a microenterprise. This proven social and economic empowerment model is implemented in partnership with local agencies.
What's happening in the NY Tech sector is worth paying attention to. Observationally speaking, it's a rumble of energy, passion and power that, I believe, is on the verge of erupting.