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StartupBus isn’t just about putting people on a bus and having them launch businesses: that’s the excuse. The real driver behind the concept was to get people working together so they can form an alumni network and develop some raw experience together, that in turn makes them more likely to succeed with their future entrepreneurial ventures. (Here’s a video of me futher explaining this to the 2010 buspreneur class.)

Something we do to further that goal, is to get the people before they get put into teams, to work on the StartupBus platform. The reason is because when on the bus, everyone breaks up into teams and they don’t interact with others due to the frantic rush to push a product out. In 2011, this problem is compouned by the fact we have people from multiple cities involved in the event, which will create silo’s in the community.

The pre-bus work program is designed to have people build relationships and collaborate together as a group. This not only gives a stronger ownership over StartupBus the concept as an organic community-driven effort (this entire event is run by alumni on a volunteer basis), but it further strengthens the network that gets developed as part of the experience.

Starting from this weekend, the alumni and I will release our plans to get the incoming 150 170+ buspreneurs working together which will include hackathons, virtual collaboration with sister bus cities, and a frantic week of creating nothing into something. The work includes pushing the limits with location awareness technology, a game for the StartupBus audience to engage with, content management systems for the teams to announce their work, a virtual file system to be put on each bus, organising the launch parties and even the booking of accomodation for the group on the way and at Austin.

And while the work developed is intended as a way to get people working together, they also will be building some very valuable things that will help them work more efficiently on the bus and create more exposure of StartupBus. The value of the latter is so when they launch their startups they can benefit from the collective work under a unified brand that links them together.

So if you’ve been accepted to be a 2011 buspreneur, get ready because the fun starts now!

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