The wind was blowing, the snow was falling, there was a NY Tech Meetup going on... and it had been way too long since I went to one, so I made a game time decision, scared up a last minute ticket, and attended last night.
Despite the bad weather, there was standing room only. Perhaps people came out in droves because these events are consistently good; or maybe some were curious about the "sex+tech" track.
More about that later (and hence the "TV 14" rating of this post). For now, I will say that the other demos were very cool, and reflected the increasingly hardware-driven nature of the tech scene these days:
- Birdi is a smart air monitor that tracks air quality, fire and carbon monoxide fumes to keep you healthy and safe. Here is a link to their IndieGogo crowdfunding campaign.
- Uncharted Play showed off their SOCKETT energy-harnessing soccer ball; great for emerging markets, 30 minutes of play can provide hours of light.
- Capti is very cool; they aim to get people to lift their heads up from smartphone screens via an app that reads content aloud. You can pick the voice (we heard many fun and amusing choices - male, female, accents, etc.) and download it from the iOS app strore.
- The Cozy from Radiator Labs seems like an "only in New York" kind of invention, something that apartment dwellers can relate to. But it is also very cool - literally. the smartphone-controlled radiator cover regulates temperature and eliminates those annoying blasts of heat that you sometimes get from radiators.
- The Confide team demonstrated their disapperaing text message service via a hilarious sketch. They go one better than SnapChat (which has been hacked, as one questioner pointed out) when it comes to protecting confidential communications: think Mission Impossible ("this tape will now destroy itself") for a paranoid,Snowden era.
- ThinkUp offers analytics for real people, not companies. It was great to hear from social media/NY tech icon Anil Dash, who had the funniest line of the night. He spoke about their business model (typically a forbidden topic at NYTM) and explained (as best as I can remember): "We have an unusual way to monetize; we build stuff that people really want, and charge them money for it."
- Lenddo showed off their platform that lets emerging market middle class use social connections to build their creditworthiness and access local financial services.
The sex track ran last, and was hosted by Cindy Parrot. She spoke about her Make Love Not Porn initiative, and introduced the following vendors;
- Down is an app company (for iOS and Android) that wisely rebranded from its previous name, Bang with Friends. It gives you a way to tap your social connections, check out friends of friends, see which ones you might like (via a "Bangable index" which wins my prize for second funniest line of the night), and connect with secret admirers.
- Vibease wins for best demo, in my book (their demo was live and clean, don't worry - but the YouTube video above will give you an idea of what I saw). It is Siri meets Her meets... well, check out the video and the title of this post, and you will get the idea. Sadly, it could use a better name as it sounds like an STD or medication IMO.