After many events, I’m growing very tired of the usual stuff. Every time I open my Twitter it’s the same old ,same old. Every time I read about an event, it’s similar. Today I read this quote on declaring failure by my friend Danielle that made me smile: “Your company is becoming a zombie start-up if […] You’re at SXSW right now reading this post and trying not to cry“.
For those that know me, that have seen me ride every event, this might come as a shocker, but yes, I’m very tired with the tech scene event. That’s why when my friend Nuno approached me about the Lisbon Big Apps conference I was a little bit skeptical. That was until he told me what the idea behind it was.
Everyone talks about mobile apps and everyone talks about big data, but truthfully, few companies actually build something useful with it. That’s why Nuno and his team decided to partner up with the city of Lisbon and Vodafone App Factory to bring to Portugal a very useful conference, one where start-ups actually are required to build things on top of the city’s big data resources.
I like this approach for two reasons. First of all, it’s something fucking useful. I’m sick of Yet-Another-Pooping-Helping-App. I would rather have an app that tells me what’s the best order and route to drop my friends when I give them a ride home. Yes, this actually happened to me last week. Funny enough, there are no mobile apps for that. (and no, Google Maps doesn’t helps as you need to input the order of the stops). The other reasons is because it puts to shame the city’s tech resources. To be honest, I have no idea if the open data sources of the city of Lisbon are any good, but I’m pretty sure, we’ll discover it shortly after a bunch of hungry data eating start-ups grind them. While this might seem as an unfair critic, I think the city of Lisbon is actually very brave about it and I wished more cities would do this. As always it’s not about failure, but about how to make it better. I would rather bruise a couple of egos and get better open data support for my city than smile, say everything is fine and walk away in frustration.
Now, are you in the mobile , open data or big data spaces? Do you want to build something actually useful that your mom can really use? Then you should give it a try! Applications are open until the 7th of April 2013. I would love to see a couple of Spaniards there (yeah country pride, what can I say), kicking Portuguese asses. Either way, I think it’s a great opportunity, specially because both the city council and top tech mobile companies are sponsoring it, which means, you might even get a contract out of it.
So don’t be shy, give it a try, visit Lisbon and above all, have a lot of fun. This is about enjoying yourself while helping others
Disclaimer: I’m a good friend of Nuno and I’m also part of the jury 😉