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Wednesday September 20, 2017

NY Convergence ORIGINAL

Heiferman Swears in New NY Tech Meetup Organizer

NYConvergence ORIGINAL

Nate Westheimer was sworn is the second NY Tech Meetup Organizer and seven presenters spoke about their technology at the first NY Tech Meetup of 2009 at the IAC building in NYC's Chelsea neighborhood last night.

Outgoing Organizer Scott Heiferman, CEO of Meetup, called the meetup to order.  He then responded to Path 101's Charlie O'Donnell's op-ed piece featured online at Silicon Alley Insider on why the meetup should be disbanded with his own take on when that should happen.  According to Heiferman, that should happen when being part of the meetup means nothing more than being a member, when competitors can no longer come together to share their ideas, when attendees find their smartphones more interesting than what's on stage, and when the organization's self-preservation is more important than what it does.  He concluded by swearing in Westheimer on a MacBook with an oath that he read from his Blackberry.

This meetup, the first organized by Westheimer, had a theme and that was "Built on Twitter".  Presenters included: @shakeshack, TwiTerra, CoTweet, StockTwits, Shorty Awards, Klout, and Botanicalls.  At the meetup's conclusion, Westheimer outlined his plans for the meetup and invited all attendees to The Park bar and restaurant across the street where management provided a private room for attendees to network.

Here is a summary of the presentations which we saw:

  • @shakeshack's creators discussed how the Twitter-based service helps keep NYC's new "Silicon Alley" in the vicinity of the Shake Shack in Madison Square Park informed about the burger stand's line length.  They informed the staff there that they'd created it, but they haven't heard from owner Danny Meyer what he thinks about it. 
  • TwiTerra is a program which allows you to visualize retweets across an image of the globe and was created by a graduate school in NYU's ITP program at the Tisch School of the Arts.
  • CoTweet, currently in private beta, allows companies the ability to easily switch between the Twitter accounts of different brands they're tweeting as. 
  • StockTwits provides real-time updates on company information being shared over Twitter and has recently received funding.
  • The Shorty Awards is accepting nominations for best Twitter users in a number of categories and user-generated categories.  They've arranged for sponsorship and winners will be flown to NYC for the ceremony where they'll give their speeches in under 140 characters. @botanicalls was hijacked to nominate Westheimer for a "pottery" award.
  • Klout tracks online influence and showed how Westheimer has had a steady amount of influence, judged by updates, followers, and retweets since the service went active.
  • Botanicalls showed off its kits that you have to solder together and allow your plants to send you messages via Twitter when they need water.  The company grew out of a project at The New York Times' R&D lab, but it wasn't mentioned how this technology could be of use to the publication.

In his valedictory remarks, Westheimer outlined changes attendees should expect in the coming months.  First, there will be an advisory board chosen exclusively by Westheimer.  Second, there will be a group of 12 who will function as a Community Committee to ensure that the meetup connects with the other parts of NYC's tech scene, including universities, businesses, etc.  Committee members can nominate themselves or be nominated, but any nominations must be made to Westheimer at nate@innonate.com. Future meetups will have themes and next month's will be "Mobile Meets Social".  Lastly, there will occasionally be guest MCs. 

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  • also, I must have blacked out during the shakeshack preso. I don’t remember that at all 🙂

  • the Community Committee sounds like a real super hero troupe (read latest RollingStone) and by far, the most “look at me I’m such a nerd” moment occured with the swearing in. It felt showy and insidery, but chuckles all around proved they were talking to the right audience.

  • h

    “swearing in a new organizer…”
    That and the whole election is quite amusing. Scott is really full of himself.
    The meetup should be disbanded, since all his criteria have already been met, especially:
    “when the organization’s self-preservation is more important than what it does”
    Or perhaps he should have said “my own self-preservation”