Category Archives: Events

Calling all Startups‚ Students‚ Developers and Designers!

The App Pitch competition is coming to MaRS Discovery District in Toronto on January 29th‚ 2013!

What is The App Pitch?

The App Pitch is the opportunity to show the Toronto startup‚ student and developer community YOUR app ideas for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.

Register to pitch your app as an individual or as a team of two. You will have three minutes to pitch your app idea to a team of amazing judges. The judges will then select six finalists‚ based on the judging criteria. Those teams will then pitch to the audience who will decide the top 3 apps who will receive a spot in the elevator to pitch your startup to investors during the International Startup Festival Elevator World Tour.

The first 20 people at the door for The App Pitch on January 29th will receive a discount code to register for a complimentary pass to attend the International Startup Festival Elevator World Tour stop in Toronto on January 31st. Although‚ you must register in advance of the event to receive the discount code!

Finally‚ bring your hardware with you as Microsoft representatives will be in attendance to conduct a Developer Installfest! Get support from experts to set up your machine with all the necessary developer tools‚ SDKs‚ code samples and more to get started on your app!

How Do I Get Started?

If you prefer I not forward you these types of communications‚ just let me know. To learn how to manage your contact preferences for other parts of Microsoft‚ please read our Privacy Statement.

Good luck to all those pitching apps and please reach out to me at if you have any questions!

#DevTO 19 – Connecting Things & CoffeeScript with Node.js

Looks like #devto’s just turned legal age… in months! Thanks to all who battled the Sandy aftermath to hang out with us!

Mailing list

Have you joined yet? Remember you get access to tickets a whole day before everybody else. This month we event sent out some discount codes to other Toronto events like Startup Weekend and Lean Startup Machine! It’s free and it’s the fastest way to get #DevTO tickets delivered to your inbox!
Join our mailing list!

Tickets

If you missed last month’s speakers check them out here. We have Anita from Veriday and Faisal from Kobo this month talking about Connecting Things & CoffeeScript with Node.js.
Don’t miss it! The full details are below! More tickets will be opened at 8pm on October 1st.
Get your tickets

Anita Katakkar – Connecting Things

Anita Katakkar

Steve Jobs describes the creative process as “connecting things”. Similarly, the creative process when collaborating can be described as connecting things that come from different origins. Software developers collaborate each time they work with individuals from varied backgrounds or when they develop systems that need to communicate. Similarly, musicians are creating more unique collaborations than ever before as the granularity in labelling music genres increases. Often these collaborations mean traveling unchartered territory. During this session, Anita will discuss similarities in her experiences of collaborating in music and software design, discuss some basic principles of collaboration and demonstrate these principles in musical practice.

Anita Katakkar is classically trained in playing “tabla”, a drum that originates from India. With Indian/Scottish roots in multicultural Toronto, Anita Katakkar’s music practice represents a link between her heritage and community. She has performed, toured internationally and recorded with the Toronto Tabla Ensemble and Jeff Martin and has toured nationally with The Tea Party. In her latest fusion project “Rakkatak” (http://www.rakkatak.com), Anita has teamed up with local Toronto musicians to create an atmospheric backdrop for her tabla compositions.

Faisal Abid – CoffeeScript with Node.js

Node.js is kick-ass, but when writing large scale apps Javascript does get messy. Learn why Dropbox said F-u to their Javascript and went to CoffeeScript, and how you can too! We will cover the basics of CoffeeScript and Node, then jump right into why CoffeeScript and Node.js are like Peanut Butter and Jelly!

Faisal is an author published by Manning (at age 17) and O’Reilly and has also appeared in leading publications with articles on ColdFusion and Flex. Faisal also teaches Android development at the Rich Media Institute, as well as give presentations at FITC, Riadventure and other conferences on Android, Node.js, CoffeeScript and various other topics. Previously Faisal served as the CTO for MatchFuel and its predecessor AndSpot. From server-side and database challenges to the the front end issues, Faisal loves solving problems and strives to create software that can make a difference. Currently, he is a Software Engineer at Kobo on the Android tablet team.

Partners

Headstart Solutions is a social recruiting and career development agency. We specialize in social media recruiting on-demand and outsourcing solutions, using the latest social media tools and methodologies to engage, recruit, and stay in touch with the best talent.
You probaly have met Marc or Sue at some point in the past year, remember they spoke about personal branding and how to give awesome presentations? Marc and Sue are here to provide our community with personal branding tips,career advice, and exciting new job opportunities for FREE! Get in touch with us at talks@devto.ca for a FREE career coaching session!

Gold Sponsors


Extreme Startups
is the epicenter of innovation in Toronto and is dedicated to providing everything it takes to see its startups succeed!

Silver Sponsors


New Relic is the all-in-one web application performance tool that lets you see performance from the end user experience, through servers, and down to the line of application code. New Relic is the only dashboard you need to keep an eye on application health and availability. Real user experiences, server utilization, code-level diagnostics, and more. Complete visibility anytime you want it.


Mercatus Technologies enables retailers and advertisers to achieve competitive advantage, boost brand equity, and improve financial performance. Leveraging Mercatus’ smart shopping technology on a cross-channel marketing level, achieve the ultimate one-to-one relationship with shoppers throughout their buying cycle—from intent to influence to purchase.

Bronze Sponsors

In Kind Sponsors

Startup Weekends are weekend-long, hands-on experiences where entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs can find out if startup ideas are viable. On average, half of Startup Weekend’s attendees have technical or design backgrounds, the other half have business backgrounds. Startup Weekend Toronto is a non-profit event and all ticket proceeds go towards creating an awesome event for everyone to enjoy. Purchase your tickets here for their next weekend in Toronto from Nov 9th to Nov 11th 2012.


FITC produces design and technology focused conferences and seminars worldwide which inspire, educate and challenge attendees.

The Startup Kids Screening

Last month we accidentally stumbled upon a blog post for this documentary made in Iceland about young entrepreneurs. The trailer was really good and so here we are! Depending on how this goes we might arrange for another screening in Toronto. Let us know if you’re interested!

The Startup Kids is a documentary about young web entrepreneurs in the U.S. and Europe. It contains interviews with the founders of Vimeo, SoundCloud, Kiip, InDinero, Dropbox, Foodspotting and many others who talk about how they started their company and their lives as an entrepreneur.
The movie is made by two Icelandic entrepreneurs, Vala Halldorsdottir and Sesselja Vilhjalmsdottir, who founded their first company shortly after the economic collapse of Iceland and wanted to motivate other young people to become entrepreneurs.

Event Details

When: Dec 5th, 2012 6pm
Where: 25 Dockside Drive Toronto, Ontario at Corus Entertainment – 8th floor

Tickets

On Dec 5th we’re holding a different kind of event from the usual #DevTOs. Check out this awesome documentary made in Iceland about young entrepreneurs in the U.S and Europe.

Get your tickets

Also given that this is about young entrepreneurs it seemed natural to utilize a local Toronto startup for the ticket management. Thanks to Picatic for their support!

Last but not least thanks to our wonderful hosts and staff  that evening at Corus Entertainment!

 

#DevTO 18: Take it to the Edge and Email for Pirates

Mailing list

Have you joined yet? Remember you get access to tickets a whole day before everybody else. This month we event sent out some discount codes to other Toronto events like Startup Weekend, AndroidTO and Lean Startup Machine! It’s free and it’s the fastest way to get #DevTO tickets delivered to your inbox!
Join our mailing list!

Tickets

If you missed last month’s speakers check them out here. We have Tom from Adobe and Tom from The Working Group this month talking about Pirates sending emails from the Edge of the world…or something like that : )
Don’t miss it! The full details are below! More tickets will be opened at 8pm on October 1st.
Get your tickets

Tom Green – Let’s Take It To The Edge

Tom GreenIn August of 2011, Adobe Edge was quietly offered on Labs and within a few days Adobe received a rather pleasant shock: Over 200,000 copies of the app had been downloaded and designers and developers were doing things with the app that Adobe had not even envisioned. Since then the application has undergone 7 revisions from an app that simply shoved pixels from here to there to one with a full compliment of pro grade tools that will appeal to everyone from hard core JavaScript programmers to designers looking for a visual motion graphics and interactivity application that get’s them into the HTML 5, CSS3 and JavaScript game.

Tom Green is also an Adobe Community Professional, a member of Adobe’s Higher Education Leader Program in the Post Secondary area and is a member of the Customer Advisory Boards for Flash Media Server, Fireworks and Edge at the Adobe Corporation.

Tom Walsham – Email for Pirates. Plunder your customers with lifecycle marketing

Dave McClure’s seminal talk ‘Pirate Metrics for Startups’ highlighted the key metrics by which startups live and die. By applying an understanding of your customer lifecycle, setting event-based triggers in your application and engaging with your customers via email, you can drive growth, retention and revenues across the lifecycle of your product.

Tom Walsham is the Product Manager and Chief Email Herder at PostageApp, as well as Director of Product Development at The Working Group. Over the past decade working in tech, his career has led from the blinkenlights of systems administration through a winding path working at and with startups on product development, metrics and marketing.

Partners

Headstart Solutions  is a social recruiting and career development agency. We specialize in social media recruiting on-demand and outsourcing solutions, using the latest social media tools and methodologies to engage, recruit, and stay in touch with the best talent.
You probaly have met Marc or Sue at some point in the past year, remember they spoke about personal branding and how to give awesome presentations? Marc and Sue are here to provide our community with personal branding tips,career advice, and exciting new job opportunities for FREE! Get in touch with us at talks@devto.ca for a FREE career coaching session!

Gold Sponsors


Extreme Startups
is the epicenter of innovation in Toronto and is dedicated to providing everything it takes to see its startups succeed!

Silver Sponsors


Mercatus Technologies enables retailers and advertisers to achieve competitive advantage, boost brand equity, and improve financial performance. Leveraging Mercatus’ smart shopping technology on a cross-channel marketing level, achieve the ultimate one-to-one relationship with shoppers throughout their buying cycle—from intent to influence to purchase.

Bronze Sponsors

In Kind Sponsors


FITC produces design and technology focused conferences and seminars worldwide which inspire, educate and challenge attendees.

What is a Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekends are weekend-long, hands-on experiences where entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs can find out if startup ideas are viable. On average, half of Startup Weekend’s attendees have technical or design backgrounds, the other half have business backgrounds.

Beginning with open mic pitches on Friday, attendees bring their best ideas and inspire others to join their team. Over Saturday and Sunday teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing LEAN Startup Methodologies and building a minimal viable product. On Sunday evening teams demo their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts.

Want a 15% discount code?

Join our mailing list here to get this discount code! You’ll also hear about our next event before tickets go live on the web AND get access to tech jobs in Toronto

Join our mailing list!

Here’s a video preview of how all this goes down.

Startup Weekend Toronto is a non-profit event and all ticket proceeds go towards creating an awesome event for everyone to enjoy. Purchase your tickets here for their next weekend in Toronto from Nov 9th to Nov 11th 2012.

Event: HACK with Facebook in Toronto on June 16th

Facebook is running their largest ever developer event in Canada on Saturday June 16th at 99 Sudbury.
There will be two presentation tracks dedicated to developers and creative/marketing professionals and plenty of time dedicated to cranking out code during the all day event. In the morning, Facebook Platform Engineers from New York, California, and Dublin will be kicking things off with an intro to the platform, open graph, and mobile, and the creative track later in the afternoon will cover storytelling, social design, apps for marketers, and advertising on Facbeook – all delivered by local platform experts.
Facebook Engineers will be on hand to answer questions and help you make the most out of the APIs and tools offered by the platform. There will be a demo session at the end of the night and prizes for best overall app, best open graph integration, best game, and best mobile app.
Registration is free and filling up fast! Check out more details and register at  http://facebook.regsvc.com/E8.
– Sachin Monga

Spotlight: Android

The little androids, that could, have made their way into cell phones and tablets. The platform has gain insurmountable ground in the realm of the mobile space in such a short time, being one the top OSes on the market. Various companies, in the space such as HTC, Samsung, Motorola, and several others, have dubbed their devices with over seven iterations of Android. Android’s deployment is not only the most user friendly, but also, the quickest, allowing even folks with Eclipse and a few SDKs to get started through both native and html apps with just the syntax to master. Those smart little robots.  And surprisingly, we’re not talking about anything to do with Star Wars.

At #devTO 13, we’re giving away two FITC Spotlight: Android tickets(Approx. value for early bird 109.00) to get your learn on, June 23rd, with some of Toronto’s brightest Android builders,  including one of our regulars, Mark Lapasa, and talent from one of the leaders in the Toronto mobile game, Xtreme Labs. 7 technical talks that are definitely worth the visit. We’re also giving out a special discount code at the event!

#FITCTO Recap – Tony SY Ke

Since Christmas last year the great guys and gals at FITC have been donating FITC tickets to #DevTO attendees. To top that off they generously offered the #DevTO gang complimentary tickets to attend this great festival of art and code at the Hilton downtown Toronto.

Steve Jobs Called My Work Sh*t, and Welcome to the Post-PC Era

I loved the title of this presentation and I knew it would be a great kick off to my FITC experience this year. Tony SY Ke’s 90 minute talk was all over the place but as he proceeded you could see how all these stories linked up together and eventually you get to the point where the title of the talk came from.

Come out from the trenches

Tony kicked off with a great statement about why you should be attending networking events such as meet ups and conferences. This advice goes out to everybody whether you are still in school, just graduating or have been in the trenches for a decade. The best thing about these events is the opportunity they provide you to step out of your trench or climb out of your hole and have a look around to see what everybody is up to. This helps you get a bird’s eye view of what is happening elsewhere and how all these trenches and holes people are keeping themselves busy with come together and connect.

10 billion

By 2014 there will be around 10 billion post-PC devices. Everybody will have not one, but multiple devices. Look around you today and you can see this trending towards that. Mobile devices are quickly becoming an extension of the brain, your bridge to the collective knowledge of everybody around you; online and offline. Today’s app developers have to fall into two camps to get a chance at being successful, either 1) your app creates content or 2) it organizes content. If it doesn’t do either then re-think your idea. Apps that create content like  DrawSomething also let you turn your creativity (good or bad) into a conversation. There is an abundance of content available offline and online and the other camp of apps help you make sense of this flood of information. A cool example is getabstract that allows you to read the key ideas of tons of business books available today in 10min! Yes, nobody has time to read these fairly big books that could end up being a little dry sometimes.

Context. Adaptive. Connected

Building a meaningful and powerful experience for your users requires you to consider three important concepts: 1) contextual data 2) adaptive data and 3) connected UX.

Contextual data. Time, data, location, movement. All external.

Adaptive data. Emotional data, learned data, recommendations.

Connected UX. How do you connect the digital world to the real physical world?

Portrait over landscape

There was a sudden diversion here into a discussion over what is better design for phone screens, landscape or portrait? Basically, for interacting with your website or app portrait is always better because it allows you to use the app with one hand. Also keep important interaction points away from the top left corner or bottom right corner as those make it harder to use the app with one hand. Once you design for landscape you force your users to use both hands which might not be ideal all the time.

…and this is why Apple will never create a phone bigger than the iPhone – unless Steve Jobs is dead

Tony continues on to talk about some of his best and most interesting projects and ideas throughout his career across London, Vancouver and New York.

 

Pretty vs. Functional. There is a difference

Interactive TV can be done fairly easily yet very few stations do this well or at all. Some key features here include things like a white background vs dark background for daytime vs nighttime. Auto-scrolling the schedule to the current time slow for more context.

Travel apps. A lot of travel apps and site suck. They don’t present data intelligently. They just present a lot of data. Why do they show what the current weather is? I’m not currently there. I don’t care. I care about what the weather will be when I’m there next week. Who cares where the airport is? How far is the hotel from the airport is more relevant.

Nike Plus. Weather context. If it it’s raining give me some motivation to go out and run.

Recommendations. Amazon recommendations suck but it’s hard to do recommendations well when they’re’ machine generated. Better yet, recommendations from friends are easier to implement and probably more relevant that machine based ones.

Wifi Calendar Router. This is a pretty crazy idea but I liked it. WiFi routers are one trick ponies, why not teach them some new tricks? Imagine your WiFi router is actually a calendar that sticks to your fridge or hangs on the wall. It’s also got a little screen and you can push and subscribe any data feed to it such as the weather, bus schedules, birthdays, etc. Makes routers are little more useful and you don’t have to tuck it away behind the TV.

Your Music DNA. A common conversation between kids and adults alike:

“Hey what music do you listen to?”

“A little bit of everything I guess”

We don’t all just listen to one type or another, some of us do, but most listen to different genres all the time and just something about certain songs trigger something inside you and you like it. This is where the idea for your music DNA comes from. Basically its an app that analyses your music and spits out a sequence of coloured shapes. These can be printed on a tshirt for example and could work at concerts or other festivals and break the ice between complete strangers since you already have something in common. You both have this shirt, and you might have similar music DNA.

Economy of Attention

90 minutes later after many stories that also included casino gangsters that looked friendly to 7 year old Tony, lighter clickers, and building the A-team van from card board because no stores carried it, and other stories of how he ended up in design Tony sums things up nicely with:

today we are living in an economy of attention more so than ever before. Our attention spans are declining but websites and apps that command our attention can get away with a $1B valuation or even $100B valuations.