Archive by Author - Susan Bratton

“I come from 5 generations of Cohen merchants …” Joe Cohen

by on July 18, 2009 at 8:18 pm
Joe Cohen, Founder, Seatwave.com

Joe Cohen, Founder, Seatwave.com

“I come from 5 generations of Cohen merchants thus love the marketplace; I also have non-genetic love of sport and music = best job ever,” Joe Cohen. #WDYDWYD? #TG2009 @SeatwaveJoe

My Traveling Geeks Meme: WDYDWYD? What is it?

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Cambridge Traveling Geeks TweetUp #TG2009

by on July 17, 2009 at 11:43 pm

We had the most gorgeous setting for a TweetUp ever, arranged by Karyn Barnes of East of England. Thank you, Karyn!

Below are a few choice photos and links to larger sets. If anyone else has photos, please let me know.

Cambride England TweetUp at the Fitzwilliams Museum

Cambride England TweetUp at the Fitzwilliams Museum

Flickr Set from Susan Bratton

http://www.flickr.com/photos/luvlotus/sets/72157621345333391/

Flickr Set from Mark Littlewood

http://www.flickr.com/photos/39952434@N04/sets/72157621295932914/

Laurence John, Amadeus | Andrea Christofaro, Designer

Laurence John, Amadeus | Andrea Christofaro, Designer

William Tunstall-Pedoe, True Knowledge with Susan Bratton, Personal Life Media

William Tunstall-Pedoe, True Knowledge with Susan Bratton, Personal Life Media

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How are the US and UK Different in Our Approach to Social Media? #TG2009

by on July 17, 2009 at 6:13 pm

Here’s an interview done at Econsultancy in London where they asked me about the differences between the US and UK with regard to start ups, innovation, and social media.

Econsultancy Round Table #TravelingGeeks
Image by SusanBratton via Flickr
Econsultancy
Image by jdlasica via Flickr
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Jim, JD and Clare
Image by jdlasica via Flickr
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Natural Language Oracle – True Knowledge: New Search Technology from Cambridge #TG2009

by on July 17, 2009 at 5:36 pm
True Knowledge
True Knowledge

Last week in Cambridge, the Traveling Geeks met William Tunstall-Pedoe of True Knowledge.

True Knowledge bills itself as a question answering service — a more refined online search service.

Image representing William Tunstall-Pedoe as d...
Image byTrue Knowledge/True Knowledge

via CrunchBase

Instead of searching for words, you ask questions in natural language, and instead of getting a list of internet pages that may contain what you’re looking for, you get a concise direct answer. According to William, this is similar to Ask.com, but instead of human intervention, they’ve come up with new algorithms and data feeds that can automate the question-search.

True Knowledge has a huge database of facts (170 million and counting). For searchers, this translates into a powerful online personal assistant answering simple questions like When was Barak Obama born? and much more complicated ones like Who has been president of the US since John McCain was born? and How far is London from Michael Jackson’s birthplace? that require True Knowledge to deduce information based on the facts it knows.

True Knowledge has a free Firefox extension called Google Enhancer. After you install it, every time you search for something on the top search engines (Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and Ask.com), the extension will also ask True Knowledge what you searched for and show you the results:

True Knowledge Results
True Knowledge Results

Here are photos of the TweetUp and the luxurious interiors of the Fitz.

Here is a photo of William and I at the Cambridge TweetUp at the Fitz Museum.

Susan and William
Susan and William

You can keep in touch with True Knowledge via their blog and @trueknowledge on Twitter.

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In the MOO’d to be Creative? Richard Moross Has Some Fun Ideas for You #TG2009

by on July 17, 2009 at 5:18 pm

While in London last week, I had the delightful opportunity to meet the founder and CEO of Moo.com. If you haven’t seen all the great things you can create with your images and Richard’s printing capabilities, you should click below to check out the options.

MOO PRODUCTS

Richard Moross of MOO.com

Richard Moross of MOO.com

Day 54 - Moo.com MiniCards
Image by brianjmatis via Flickr
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Howard Rheingold on 21st Century Literacy Skills at #RebootBritian #TG2009

by on July 17, 2009 at 1:30 pm
Howard Rheingold Keynoting Reboot Britain

Howard Rheingold Keynoting Reboot Britain

I had the good fortune to travel for a week with Howard Rheingold as part of our Traveling Geeks contingent to England. Being with him 24/7 is delightful. He rolls with the natural hiccups of travel, is cordial to one and all and is a deep thinker about the human condition as it meets the online world.

Howard’s keynote at Reboot Britain was his first pass at a new group of practices he believes are crucial skills for success in today’s online world.

Check yourself and see which you possess and where you can improve.

The five main skills, according to Howard are:

  • Attention
  • Participation
  • Cooperation
  • Critical Consumption
  • Network Awareness
Howard Rheingold
Image by SusanBratton via Flickr

Howard purports and I agree, that school is no longer enough to educate our students. If you’ve listened to my DishyMix interviews with Alvin Toffler, author of FutureShock and Revolutionary Wealth, Marcus Buckingham, author of The Truth About You or Sir Ken Robinson, author of The Element, you know I believe our schools are failing our children.

This presentation hit home for me as a litmus test to both my personal skills as well as those of my daughter. Howard says learning is happening outside the classroom via participation with others, including via online gaming and socnet interaction. He says that “being an active citizen has values on many levels that support learning.” As I’ve said before, passive consumption is no longer enough.

First there’s attention. In a world of multi-tasking and content snacking, we must continue to pursue focus. It’s a required skill. How is your attention span?

Next are Participation and Cooperation. Howard points to the value of online collective action and collaboration as trends happening now in which we should participate. Here’s my post on next generation collaboration tools. Are you taking advantage of these online tools to fix problems, change the world or just work more efficiently? Your children will be, if they are smart.

Howard Rheingold

Howard Rheingold

Next is Critical Consumption, or as Howard calls it, taking a page from Ernest Hemingway, “Crap Detection.” He rails at the lack of critical thinking being taught in schools today. If we induce children to challenge authority by teaching them critical thinking, we won’t be able to control them in school. Now that anyone can post anything online, everyone must develop scrutiny, fact-checking, rational thought and critical thinking. Is that Wikipedia entry true? Did USA Today fact check that story? Doubtful on both counts.

Crap Detection 101 by Howard Rheingold

Finally, there’s Network Awareness. Who do we know? Who are we leveraging? Are you taking advantage of social networking tools to stay connected and grow your connections? A small number of distant connections has been proven to significantly empower one’s network. Are you proactive in your approach to online networking? Are you using it for good?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on these or other skills you think are critical for our real-time, web-connected, networked world.

Susan Bratton and Howard Rheingold

Susan Bratton and Howard Rheingold

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“I am an entrepreneur because WORK becomes PLAY!,” Michael Acton-Smith. #WDYDWYD? #TG2009

by on July 16, 2009 at 8:01 pm
Michael Acton-Smith, Founder, MoshiMonsters.com

Michael Acton-Smith, Founder, MoshiMonsters.com

My Traveling Geeks Meme: WDYDWYD? What is it?

Image representing Moshi Monsters as depicted ...
Image via CrunchBase
Moshi Monsters - Puzzles
Image by Roo Reynolds via Flickr
Moshi Monsters - Zommer mopod
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What I’ll Use to Start My Next Two Industry Associations: GroupSpaces #TG2009

by on July 16, 2009 at 3:55 pm
Image representing GroupSpaces as depicted in ...
Image via CrunchBase

I’ve been on the founding board of two industry associations, the IAB and the ADM. We started the Internet Advertising Bureau in 1997 when venture funding was free flowing like champagne at an @PaulCarr rendezvous and though we felt some financial constraint, there were plenty of dues to be had to fund our site and manage the business.

Not so with the Association for Downloadable Media, which started in 2007, with very small coffers in an increasingly tight industry. Chris MacDonald, the Chairman and the executive team have had to manage every penny, with a lot of our costs going to dues management, voting infrastructure and other expenses that didn’t move the needle on our agenda to help podcasters monetize their content.

I wish we’d had GroupSpaces two years ago, instead of Avectra and the other very poor tools we’ve had to use to run our industry assocation. In London at a NESTA and Seedcamp “Speed Dating” event, I was introduced to David Langer, founder of GroupSpaces. The company focuses on helping clubs, societies, associations and other groups with the myriad tasks that suck time from people who typically volunteer. Here is a list of features:

Members

Database – Mailing List

Email Discussions – Forum

Social Network – Polls

Events

Manage Registrations

Promote – Take Payments

Schedule Times & Places

Website

Create Pages – Share Files

Public or members-only

Integrate with your own site

Just having a payment feature combined with a mailing list is a big huzzah, and it seems like GroupSpaces has done an excellent job understanding the features of their target audience.

Yet another excellent Seedcamp company coming from the UK.

Seedcamp Background Info:

Twitter: @langer

Email: david@groupspaces.com

Website: http://www.groupspaces.com

Contact Phone: +44 (0)7762 222 381

Company Description
GroupSpaces is an Oxford-based startup providing easy-to-use online tools that take the pain out of managing clubs, societies, associations and other real-world groups.
Today, GroupSpaces has over 1,600 groups signed up with almost 160,000 members in total and has worked with over 60 blue-chip advertisers including IBM, BP, JPMorgan, Procter & Gamble and McKinsey.
GroupSpaces was founded in October 2007 and raised seed funding in January 2008. In April 2008, GroupSpaces was selected as one of 20 promising UK Web companies to visit Silicon Valley on the inaugural Web Mission, a week-long trade forum sponsored by UKTI, BT, TechCrunch and HSBC. In December 2008, the founders were selected by Spectator Business in less than a dozen “rising stars of the business world” aged under-25. In March 2009, GroupSpaces won the MIT Global Startup Workshop pitch competition.
GroupSpaces is planning its next funding round for later this year.
About David: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Langer

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“Because I love design, teen culture and the challenge of growing a business. And selling animated ferrets for a living never fails to make me laugh,” Celia Francis. #WDYDWYD? #TG2009 @WeeWorld

by on July 16, 2009 at 10:07 am
Celia Francis, Founder, WeeWorld

Celia Francis, Founder, WeeWorld

weeworld = crazytown
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Day 338: WeeWeeWee...
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“Because I listened to Al Gore!,” Lisa Devaney. #WDYDWYD? #TG2009

by on July 15, 2009 at 9:03 pm
Lisa Devaney, Hai Media Group

Lisa Devaney, Hai Media Group

My Traveling Geeks Meme: WDYDWYD? What is it?

Lisa playing with Legos - Bonus Material!

Lisa playing with Legos – Bonus Material!

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