Monday, September 17, 2012

eClub starts again next Monday

I am still at the airport in Glasgow returning from a short cycling vacation, but I feel it is time to reveal the next eClub series plans. We are making big changes in eClub and we have a lot of surprises. Do not miss the opening presentation by Steven Kuyen.

This semester we will open in a big style with a presentation by the Steven Kuyan the director of the Varick Street incubator. Steven’s incubator is closely associated with NYU Poly. There is a big similarity between our eClub and Varick street incubator and therefore I hope, it will be very interesting for us to see how they organize educational and motivational presentations, how they help their students and how can we work together. Varick street incubator also provides mentors helping the student’s teams to develop their startups. On top of that they also provide a hosting space for new teams. This is still a dream for us, but believe me, we are working on it and I hope, we will surprise you soon.

Steven’s presentation starts on Monday 24.9. at 18:00 again in Hub Prague. As in the last semester we will be streaming to our usual locations. (Brno, Hradec Kralove, Olomouc, Ostrava, Zlin) This also will be our first overseas session. The students of the NYU-Poly will join us, too. Get ready and invite as many viewers as possible, it will be great. I also hope, we will remove all the technical problems we had encountered last time. We plan to have another two sessions in HUB in this semester, each last Monday in the month. Regularly we will meet as usually at Karlovo nam 13, K9 room.

I will deliver the second presentation (Karlovo nam. K9, 1st Oct). I will present the organizational details for this semester, this time for the whole academic year in the eClub. There will be some changes. I am planning to select the winners of the eClub competition only once in the academic year, in May before the summer vacation. The reason is simple. Based on the last year experience students had to focus most of all on exams in January and beginning of February and they did not have time enough to work on their ideas, to work on their startups. This does not mean there is no competition before Christmas. Instead, we will organize the ideas presentations, which we have been running in the middle of the semester. A panel of reviewers will select the most promising teams. The winning teams will get a working space, and mentors. The reason is simple we want to work with the most promising teams throughout the summer semester and prepare them for the final competition. Before summer the jury will select the teams with the top entrepreneurial potential in the final competition. The best team will get the grand price: two months stay at the Varick street incubator joining  their summer program. Imagine working for two months in the center of the world business, in the middle of Manhattan. Fantastic, do you agree?

The list of speakers for this season is not completed yet. We have some empty spaces. But check the eClub program pages, the first presentations are already confirmed. I will get back to you with more details soon.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Do you want owning company in the US

I was not idling during the summer. I worked with my friends from Varick Street Incubator (NY) and the University of Tomas Bata (Zlin) and we have put together an competition with an amazing award. If you win you will own a US based company.

How it started? Bob from TBU wrote me an email saying: hey, I have a bunch of talented designers interested in multimedia and web design and they do not have the right programming skills to make them live. My reply to his email was immediate: we have a different bunch in eClub Czech Technical University, Prague with complementary skills. Why don’t we try to put them together?

In the same time I was visiting incubators in the US and thanks to Jan (CzechInvest Director for the East Cost) I happened to get to Varick incubator and I met Steven who is the director. The Varick street incubator hosts mainly NYU-Poly students teams. When we met I asked Steven simple question: I have lot of skillful programmers and they want to get access to the US market, what can we do about it? His reply was quick: lets try to create a competition for mixed Czech US teams and let’s see how it would work. Great idea!

The things clicked together immediately. Bob's students have put together a portfolio of great game graphical designs. We have eager programmers at NYU-Poly, Varick street incubator and in eClub CTU. The remaining question was how to get our student together? How to make them cooperate? How to create international teams? This is a difficult task. We have immediately started discussions to find a solution. We have reviewed many different ideas, but the outcome is not surprising: we have chosen the famous BaseCamp. The BaseCamp selection is probably obvious, but it took us quite some time.  Clearly, it is one of the most popular project management web tools used in many startups. I hope, it will work for our students too. Of course, it will very much depend on the student’s activity and imagination too. I am looking forward to see emerging teams of programmers and designers.

How to start? If you want to enter the competition fill in the registration form and we invite you to the BaseCamp. Then you can browse between various projects and virtually meet your future team members. I am sure the teams will find more web communication tools, let us know what works best.

The competition is aiming at games for mobile devices, phones or tablets. You can chose from the list of graphical designs but we made the topic selection open to let other developers use their imagination and come up with something interesting. Submission date is November 5th and we will announce the winners a week later.

The competition rules are quite simple and the award is awesome. The winners will own a US company to start their business career on the most interesting market in the world.

If you have any questions let me know. If you want join register. I wish to all participants good luck and I am looking forward to see the first emerging teams.

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