Archive for December, 2011
2010 was the year of the blogger. By the end of 2010 there were 152 Million blogs on the internet. Many of us were there in the fray and posting up to 6 or 7 times a week (I know I was) and some of us even multiple times per day. Blogs shook up the world of journalism and influence and paved the way for the next leap in the way people communicate, shop, chatter and share. In 2010 there were so many social networks that any website or blog that dared jump into social media sharing would have 10-20 “chicklets” at the bottom of each page to try and cover them all in hopes of expanding their reach.
2011 changed all that as it became the year of the startup. Gradually we saw Del.icio.us, Digg, Plurk, Ning, Friendfeed, Hi5, and a myriad of other social networks competing in the “Social Network Wars” along side Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, LinkedIn while Google+ waited quietly in the wings for the dust to settle. At the end we got our 4 major platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn. and Tumblr) while the aforementioned ones began to fade into disuse. Google+ joined near the end and to considerable success due in large part to their limited release marketing model that had people who got in early bragging, and those on the waitlist foaming at the mouth for a peek at the hot new thing, becoming the 5th major social network. The thing to keep in mind, with the exception of Google, is that the brands mentioned for 2011 are for the most part, still startups, not publicly traded companies. Because the cream rose to the top, new startups began to spring up in 2011 that saw the simplified social networking landscape as an opportunity to create new products that took advantage of this whether on your tablet, laptop or mobile phone.
There has already been speculation about 2012, naturally, all over the web. What will it bring? What will 2012 do away with? What will be the killer platform and what will fade away into disuse like so many social networks and discovery engines did in 2011. Facebook is expected to make an IPO in 2012, Twitter is getting bigger and more ad supported, and mobile is expected to lead the way when it comes to what developers are working on. Will blackberry/RIM find a way to reinvent themselves before Q2 hits and it’s too late? Will Windows Phone 7 be Microsoft’s reawakening? What I can tell you is that mobile and mobile style applications are the future of computing in 2012 and beyond. Some of you have seen the Flexi-Screen phones from Samsung set to drop in 2012, and that should be indicative of the innovations coming forward. The paradigm is shifting once again, investment dollars are starting to be spent more readily and people are getting smarter.
Rannie and I were out to see a movie yesterday and took a second to appreciate how convenient our smartphones were. We had originally planned to see “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” but when we arrived at the theatre is was sold out. Not 10 or so years ago that would have meant the night would have been stymied as people used to check movie listings in the newspaper to find a showtime, or worse, call a hotline that would slowly and painfully read them all off to you in a recorded voice. It was just a matter of getting on Flixster and using the GPS function to tell us that within a certain radius there were other movies showing in a reasonable time slot. Before we knew it we were at the multiplex watching our second choice of “Sherlock Holmes 2″ with plenty of time to get popcorn, be seated and get comfortable. Seems simple and not that awe inspiring but consider that we could not even fathom that simple transaction 20 years ago it’s a big deal. Furthermore, to most people in their late 20′s or 30′s who were using computers before there WAS an internet, humankind has come a long way very quickly.
The very way people research anything is defaulted to the web and mobile and we are seeing encyclopedias go the way of the dinosaur in favour of the wiki. Our technology follows us wherever we go now and will continue to do so. The world has gotten ever smaller with social networks connecting people not just over great distances but from different social circles and milieus entirely. Businesses that are still skeptical and don’t keep up are biting the dust or spending dollars in the wrong places. Because Generation Y sits at the crossroads of the tried-and-true and the technological representation of those tried-and-true things, we are set to change the very face of the world in ways that will create an entirely new future in whatever image we choose for our children and their children. 2012 is the year we stop fearing the future and begin creating it for ourselves.
See you there.
Toronto, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. You showed the world that you care during Movember 2011 and you showed needy people across our great nation that you still care last night at HOHOTO 2011 at the Mod Club.
My first experience with HOHOTO was last year and I was delighted to see so many of the new friends I had made in 2010 in one place enjoying a big bash together in support of charity. This year was just as great if not even more so and although I arrived quite late to the party, it was a beautiful thing to be greeted so warmly by so many people with smiles on their faces. The thing I will remember most about this year’s HOHOTO is reconnecting with friends who I’ve not seen in months due to how busy we’ve all been this year – the year of the startup.
It was such a good time last year that I got involved in the organizing committee this year and though my role was a small one, it was a part of the greater sum of the hard work put in by a cadre of angels who wanted to party with a purpose: charity. Thanks to Alexa Clark, April Dunford and Michael O’Connor Clarke, our wonderful sponsors and, of course YOU, HOHOTO 2011 was the best one yet and we raised over $67,000 for the Daily Bread Food Bank.
By the way, if you want to know where on earth all the pictures are from last night I suggest you check right here. <3
Also here is Photojunkie’s HOHOTO 2011 photobooth, posted lightning fast, and Motionblur‘s set here. See if you’re in there! I’m also looking forward to Michael Penney‘s video coming down the pipeline soon!
It goes to show that Toronto is a city with heart and because of your generosity, a lot of hungry people will eat well this holiday season! Didn’t that feel good?!
If you are strapped for cash or just need to give more then I encourage you to visit this site to pledge to a random act of kindness and GiveGet will donate $5 to a charity of your choice, including Daily Bread Food Bank.
Have a happy and healthy holiday season. 2012 is going to be a big year and I look forward to seeing you all shoot for the stars.
Julia Stowell and the Make Web Not War team deserve credit where credit is due. My first experience with Web Not War was 2 years ago in Montreal and the brand has come a long way since then. People are really into this community initiative and the “Make Web Not War” brand/property has found a special place in the hearts of the startup and development community, particularly in Toronto. Mention Web Not War and you’re likely to hear how Microsoft and Windows Azure have really put in some great work and time into bringing people together in the open-source space and the overall tech scene in Canada.
Make Web Not War Community Night in Toronto went down at the Drake Underground with a live stream on Facebook. The venue was perfect, the planning nearly flawless and the company was excellent. Among the many faces in the room were our good friends from Bnotions, Atendy, Ladies Learning Code, My City Lives, Saul Colt (Freshbooks), Erin Bury (Sprouter), Chris Eben (TWG/Startup Weekend), and of course the Microsoft team, Julia, Jonathan, Nik and Reemah.
Thanks to all who attended. The Epilogger team had a blast and SOME of our team partied till they dropped! and we are thrilled to have gotten such a great response from the audience for our Alpha demo. Just wait till you see the Beta on December 9th! Stay tuned on the Epilogger blog for more news soon! By the way, Drake Hotel, cinnamon buns on a stick? SMART!
I hope you Windows Phone 7 folks are reading this because I would love to get my hands on a new Windows Phone 7 to replace my slow, dated, blackberry bold 9700. It served me well but it’s time for a change and I am sick of being hassled by Android and iPhone acolytes trying to woo me over to one or the other platform. Let’s give Windows Phone 7 a whirl! Rozenblit and Reemah let me play with their phones last night and I liked what I saw, so here is my photo scavenger hunt to win that phone!