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April 14, 2010

EVENT: Geeks go Green @startupweekend Boulder

For years I’ve been wondering what the iFart app has done for the betterment of humanity …. it’s easy of course, to think me a wowser (an Australian term for which I’m not really sure there is an equally succinct US word; roughly translates as ‘overly-serious-individual-known-for-sucking-the-joy-out-of-life-and-requiring-chiropractic-assistance-with-removing-head-from-ass’), and in part, perhaps, that’s true.

But in a time of crushing uncertainty, with natural resources being utilised at an exponential rate, with fossil fuel reserves inevitably due to expire (whether you believe that the entire basis of modern ‘civilization’ – access to a seemingly inexhaustible supply of cheap energy – is going to run out in our lifetime or not, hopefully we’re not all so abysmally stupid that we genuinely think that it’s just going to keep on coming forever), with ‘communities’ being degraded, companies collapsing and our existing systems of governance showing the cracks, it would be reasonable to ask

‘do we really need another social media app?

Boulder Startup Weekend, running this weekend …… is seeking to begin to answer that question, by bringing together social geekopreneurs into an environment where they can collaborate and spin out  solutions to problems large and small. The first Startup Weekend to be given a uniquely Triple Bottom Line focus (are you surprised that ‘you saw it here in Boulder first’?), it represents an awesome opportunity to turn on, tune in and drop in to a substantive conversation coupled with immediate action about making the world a better place.

Those unfamiliar with the success of the Startup Weekend phenomena would do well to note that more than 15 000 entrepreneurs in more than 100 cities have attended since its foundation in 2007, and some pretty decent projects have come out of it.

The most interesting aspect of the whole experience seems to be how people who may never have met before can find agreement to collaborate on a project and develop a revenue model around it in a matter of two days – bearing in mind that the whole exercise costs just $55.

My shortlist of ventures to watch that have originated in earlier weekends is:

  • SuLusso – a marketplace for sustainable jewellery
  • Local Food 365 – catalysing urban space conversion, local growing, community development, employment and eduation
  • Open Action – helping bring social impact to life by telling a more visually engaging story to a larger online audience
  • SnapImpact – making volunteering easy using a location based iPhone app (co-founder Rich Grote is speaking this year)
  • EventStart – simple, smart event organisation and management harnessing twitter and other social media

In short, if you’re into tech, and into green, and you don’t already have a half dozen projects you’re working on (or maybe you do, and want to find the talent to turn one of them into a revenue generator), you owe it to yourself, your community, and your feathered, finned and four-legged friends, to take the time to come out and play this weekend.

Click here to register

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Cameron Burgess is a recent Australian addition to the Boulderverse.

He is the CEO of a group of companies incorporating uncompromise, icologi & wellnessconnect that provide commercialization, strategic development, marketing & digital services purely to social and sustainable ventures.

Cameron is also a core-team member of w1sd0m – a global network that helps organize the flow of intellectual, social, human, & financial capital to strengthen Global Social Enterprise.

A speaker, workshop facilitator and agent provocateur, Cameron can be found on twitter @uncompromise

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