NodePDX Conference

i missed a lot of the sessions but it turns out there were 2 that surprised me w/ their content:

geddyJS – frameworks. in the young stage of js/node that we’re at we’re finally seeing frameworks. but this presenter thinks the next logical step is code organisation. some of the web frameworks suggest a little code organization but when projects get large it still turns to spaghetti. this guy is obviously a rails fan and he’s built a framework similar to rails. i’m on the fence with rails but i’m psyched where this is going. it builds routes for you and creates resource models like users, etc.. via command line calls. it’s part code generator and structure.

real time collaboration – though the premise was missing from this talk, the tech was intriguing. Kav (he was the “lead” on the team mark and i were on at our first startup weekend) is developing a framework for building real-time collaborative apps (think where you have to keep multiple browsers in sync.
this is where the beauty of using js on the client and server starts really paying dividends. using a combination of and some other shit(tm). syncing models over seems like a great idea. his company is like Liffft or something. Backbone is a bit heavy-handed, but it would help if you didn’t have too many models. if you were building a game you might roll your own model but still use for syncing. i’m getting the feeling that (and/or other node socket stuff) is the next Ajax.

here’s some other stuff i dug up on this:


cool js tools for building and continuous integration.

jake and concrete

Portland Seed Fund Launches

Tonight the Portland Seed Fund announced they were open for business. It was an uplifting event for everyone in Portland who have startup dreams, and the speakers brought some pragmatic advice to those in attendance. It was held at the Urban Airship space in the Pearl. The usual Portland suspects were in attendance, Rick Turoczy has posted video of the speakers.

I guess the biggest take-away for us was that it is definitely a great time for folks looking to start something, and that it behooves us to think of Portland and the Bay Area as a partnership. CarWoo and CloudKick represented and, although they went looking for more capital in Silicon Valley, they still have high hopes for Portland.

Just like them, we feel that there are good things to come from Portland. On top of that, Portland could be a great resource for Bay Area startups in terms of engineers and other hires.

If you have an idea that needs funding, check out the Portland Seed Fund. If you need tech resources to help with your idea, give us a call.

The startup environment in Portland

It’s no secret that the bay area is ramping up what some are already calling a tech bubble. Much of this is fueled by the new mobile/social networking/games space that is so hot (see: WSJ article).

ruby rails

At the same time, Portland is clammoring to have a startup scene of its own. With the level of investment promised from various groups, it’s going to be tough road. And why the Bay Area is still uncomfortable staking out a space here is beyond us (we aim to change this).

There is some insightful commentary on these two posts, albeit some very unsophisticated arguments that must just make the folks in the Bay Area say, “see?” But peep anyway:

How Much Does a Software Developer in Portland Earn? (spoiler alert: no one knows and/or is willing to say).

Portland Seed Fund seeks inspiration from Y Combinator grads.

City To Aim Services At Top 100 Companies

An initiative to put Portland on the map as a player is underway. In a controversial move, they are moving their focus from spreading services across all businesses to focus on the Top 100. This is sort of like dropping the ambition bomb on ourselves. The hoped for outcome is that we have more and larger success stories in our coveted 3 industries (technology, beer, spirits).

A follow-up meeting was held yesterday at Puppet Labs to discuss the current state of affairs. I was there mostly for the free booze, but have been roused from my comfortable day job and searching for the next thing. It was an interesting hodge-podge of speakers. Nitin Khanna started it out with his outline of how he feels the city needs to approach mentoring and supporting the strongest companies. He thinks the outcome is that we’ll have more local angel investors and mentors if we grow great companies.

I wasn’t always aware of who was speaking, but the PCC was well-represented. One face I recognized from the recent StartupWeekend was Angela Jackson from the Portland Seed Fund. She was well-received and well-loved, so somehow she’s a player here. I was sort of appalled, coming from SF, that when they announced a meager 2 Million dollars to work with the whole room broke out in cheers. That’s big money here? People were talking about how founders spend lots of their time looking for funding in the 10k to 25k range! How can you start a company when there is NO money coming around?! It’s bittersweet to watch. There’s a lot of excitement and strategy, but so far there’s no money here in Portland.

One of the best parts of last night was getting acquainted with all of these meta groups that are all rallying around a new startup culture in Portland. Here are some of the names:

Calendars to follow:

Other Reports: