Category: Crowdsourcing

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I've been writing about Slovenian startups for years now. In a post I published in the beginning of 2012, I've highlighted a few Slovenian companies there were able to gain global traction, and as you can see, all of them are focused on software. About a year later, I wrote on the topic again, and this time, the spotlight was on a new generation of companies, which were fueled by Kickstarter and the crowdfunding movement. These businesses were able to find their market with niche products that were interesting to the public mostly because of their innovative design. This year, I'll focus on the third generation of Slovenian technology startups, represented by companies that were able establish something that actually seems so logical today: the rise of the Slovenian hardware startup.

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written 9:55 CET on chronolog
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I don't know if you've heard, but the past year has been very generous to Slovenian startups. A new generation of companies like Layer, CubeSensors, Databox and Povio introduced innovative services in the technology sector, while products like FlyKly, Lumu, Musguard and Chipolo rocked Kickstarter with their fashionably designed solutions. If you take into account the veterans that have been around for years, you can see are slowly reaching a point where it's becoming hard to mention everybody worth mentioning. The scale of the Slovenian startup ecosystem can be understood by checking out this infographic provided by Yougo.

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written 13:07 CET on chronolog
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Kickstarter got my attention back in 2010, when Diaspora successfully raised $50k. This is the amount they required to develop an open source alternative to Facebook, where people would have full control over their posts and multimedia. It was a good idea, but too complex to easily implement, and the guys never managed to make it fully work. But there are other projects who did manage go big, making Kickstarter and crowd-founding an everyday thing. Today, numerous ideas, products, and even movies are financed this way, while statistics tell an amazing story: in 2012, Kickstarter pledges topped $300 million.

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written 23:25 CET on chronolog
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Ever since the times of IRC, there has been a need to categorize specific messages on the internet. With the rise of the social web and increased amounts of information, this habit became even stronger. First popularized by Twitter, the hashtag was introduced in 2007, and since then, found its way into standard offering of the most popular social services (Instagram, Tumblr, Google+, etc.). It seems even Facebook will introduce its own version soon, though people already use them overthere anyways. The hashtag changed the way we create and consume content, and it became a symbol of collaborative publishing in the social era.

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written 8:57 CET on chronolog
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Before I proceed with this rant, I would like to point out that I strongly believe in social media. I think it can do magical things, hell, we've already seen it has the potential to change the world. But that's just me, a person consuming information, deciding what's real and what not, riding those waves that I like. The media - they should try harder - it's their job to report the truth. In the past few weeks, we've encountered a few slips from the mainstream media here in Slovenia, feeding us with bogus information they've copied from the (social) web. I know it can be hard to track everything that's going on, but still, double-checking a few things and sources wouldn't hurt that much. And since Slovenia is in a quite critical stage at this point, with a fucked up financial situation, austerity measures, protests and everything, this makes it even more important for journalists to do their job properly.

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written 20:56 CET on chronolog
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When we started working on Ljubljana Realtime, we decided to approach it in an agile way. Amongst others, we wanted to use a few interesting lean concepts such as rapid development, Minimum Viable Product and the Build - Measure - Learn iterations. Less than two months later, the results are in, and they are very pleasing. The MVP in the shape of an activity map was developed in a few weeks, only to show there is a lot of social noise which will somehow need to be taken under control. But that's currently low priority, since the first pivot is already taking place, slowly shifting the focus from the rich map application towards an event discovery algorithm and stream. That's where I see the most potential of Ljubljana Realtime, and in the last weeks, that's where the most work was done.

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written 21:01 CET on chronolog
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I've always been a big fan of the power of the crowds. When a mass of people can achieve much more than a few skilled individuals can. And ever since we've started playing with Twitter's API, I've been think about the possibilities of this magnificent data source. Besides Twenity, we've done a few other Twitter mashups like Twitter walls, but this wasn't enough. We wanted something more - geolocation. Displaying information on a map in real-time. But since there aren't that many tweets equipped with GPS coordinates, we needed to include other services for more diversity as well. Which we did, and Ljubljana Realtime, a social event discovery application, was born.

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written 14:37 CET on chronolog
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