News from the StartupBus community

Bridge

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Team eVal

The eVal team believes that feedback is a big deal. The feedback loop between your speedometer and your foot gets you home safe every day. The feedback from your teachers helps you improve who you are.

So we are pleased to introduce Bridge. The feedback loop between you and your customers.

We use proximity technology to determine when a customer is leaving your store. We push them a one-question, three-second survey, and let them leave a brief compliment or critique.

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All Aboard

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Polish2Publish – Dev Diary

25/10/2015 – Entry I

“Most people want to be circled by safety, not by the unexpected. The unexpected can take you out. But the unexpected can also take you over and change your life. Put a heart in your body where a stone used to be.”
Ron Hall

Alright…

So I can safely confess I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into before rocking up to Ultimo Tafe early on a Sunday morning that begged me to stay in bed.

I was at even more of a loss when, upon stepping on to the coach, StartUpBus Sydney Co-Ordinator Imteaz Ahmed mentioned, as more of an aside rather than a stentorian announcement, that we’d be ‘pitching’ our ideas in an hour’s time.

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the Give Garden

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Aussie Sunrise

The Give Garden

“Giving with your heart and your head, simply.”

Industry disruption is the defining feature of the startup age. AirBNB now rents more rooms a night than most international hotel/motel chains combined. Uber is revolutionising transport/logistics markets across the globe, all without owning a single vehicle.

Unfortunately, one industry has been left in the lurch.

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StartupBus Europe 2015 Kicks off

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Last night StartupBus Europe 2015 had kick off parties in Belgium, U.K., Germany, Italy and Estonia. Eat, drink and be merry the night before the epic journey to Cologne. Buses are ready to depart 29 August.

This Year, StartupBus has gone Pirate

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StartupBus Europe 2015 is a special guest with Pirate Summit, a tech Startup “jubilee” in Cologne. All StartupBus 2015 participants will get automatically accepted into Pirate Summit 2015.

Do you have what it takes to ride StartupBus EU?

Apply today


Want to know more about Pirate Summit? Read more:

What is Pirate Summit?

The first Summit was in 2011 and is now on it’s fifth run, founded by Till (Ohrmann, Captain Till) who is still first matey and CEO. The Pirate Summit celebrates entrepreneurship. It’s an unique meet-up of early-stage startups and investors on a rusty scrapyard. Core activities: Walk the plank pitch competition with 70 pre-selected startups from 50+ nations. Burning Man and Party on the first night. It’s a startup festival to celebrate entrepreneurship & foster strong connections among the european startup eco-systems. The mission of Pirate Summit is to connect the best early-stage startups of all seven seas with the best investors. A typical attendee is wearing jeans and an eyepatch, screaming “ARRR” all the time. We have fire, shanties and rum everywhere.
Pirate Summit, Cologne, Germany 3 September 2014 - Image by Dan Taylor/Heisenberg Media

Pirate Summit, Cologne, Germany 3 September 2014 – Image by Dan Taylor/Heisenberg Media

The Pirate Summit is an incredibly cool event that totally lived up to our expectations! It is a great opportunity to mingle with the European startup scene.

Philipp Moehring – Head of Europe at AngelList (US/UK/Germany)

Some etiquette rules from: http://www.arrr.co/eps/show-your-inner-pirate-how-to-dress-and-talk/

How to dress

Eyepatch, pirate hat, pet parrot, sword (fake please), a huge beard (if you can), wooden leg. Well, you get the concept. It is all about making your inner pirate visible. For the ones wondering whether we’re joking right now… No, we’re not!

Pirate Summit, Cologne, Germany 3 September 2014 - Image by Dan Taylor/Heisenberg Media

Pirate Summit, Cologne, Germany 3 September 2014 – Image by Dan Taylor/Heisenberg Media

How to talk

For sure you have come across the typical pirate ARRR! – which you can use in almost any situation – a few times already. Yep, this is lesson 1. Not too difficult, ey? Use it once in a while and you’ll be fine. We’ll make sure to remind you of that one as well :) Still, if you want to impress your fellow pirates even more, make sure to memorize a few of the following words and sentences as well.

It is a really down-to-earth event and the whole setting gives you the freedom to be who you are. People here act without an agenda and focus on what they can do for each other. I will definitely come back.

Fabio VolkmannBlitzbude (Germany)

Want to read more about Pirate Summit?

Check here: http://www.arrr.co/eps/582/ and here: http://www.arrr.co/eps/well-thats-a-success-props-to-former-eps-participants/

5 Epic Reasons to Join StartupBus Europe

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In less than a week, the best and the brightest will come together to compete in StartupBus Europe, the continent’s most epic competition – combining the magic of a hackathon and a road trip to create the ultimate adventure on wheels. We’ll be hitting all the raddest hot spots and tech shops as we make our way to the invite-only Pirate Summit 2015, where buses from 5 countries will converge in the quest for StartupBus glory.

If you’re crazy enough to hop on a bus and build a business with a bunch of strangers in 3 days – or you know someone who is – send them our way

Epicness awaits. 

 

apply now

 

Still on the fence? Here are 5 more epic reasons why you should stop everything you’re doing now and sign up for StartupBus Europe:

 

#1: Do Something That Scares You.

like_a_bus

If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough. Push yourself past the limits of what you thought was possible and find out what you’re truly capable of. Whether you’re a hackathon junkie or a total n00b, chances are you’ve never been stuck on a bus with 20 strangers and given 3 days to build something – it’s nothing short of magic.

 

#2: Eurotrip – ‘Nuff Said.

double_decker_bus

Who hasn’t dreamed of driving across Europe on a double decker bus in a blaze of glory? This is your chance to travel all over the continent stopping at all the coolest spots and making plenty of killer products (and bad decisions) along the way…

 

#3: Make Epic Shit.

going_to_space

Think of it as a people accelerator, or a way to fast forward your life. You’ll learn more about yourself in 3 days than you have in 3 months. Cause when else in life will you have a completely safe environment to test out those crazy ideas with complete creative license?

 

#4: Join The Club.

super_heroes

You’ve heard it before: “the StartupBus will change your life” – but it’s only after 3 days of no sleep and countless hours on the road that you understand what it means to be part of the tribe. Become part of a #DreamTeam you can’t buy your way into and join ranks with some of the most elite hackers, makers and hustlers around. Start friendships that will last a lifetime and fill your rolodex with a list of insanely awesome people that you can call at any time.

 

#5: Pitch at Pirate Summit.

pirate_walk

1st Rule of StartupBus: Always Be Pitching. This year’s finalists will get the chance to brush up on their elevator pitch skills on stage at Pirate Summit’s infamous ‘Walk the Plank’ competition. Route escapades aside (and trust us, they’re awesome) – the destination alone is worth the trip. When else do you get to crack some beers and nerd out in Odonien, a scrapyard in Cologne with rusty robots, zip lines and fires galore? 

Whether you’re a billionaire or haven’t started a company, if you’re the kind of person who dares to risk it all, this is the place for you.

 

Chances to change your life don’t come often. So what are you waiting for?

 

apply now

 

Major League Hacking, Jon Gottfried on MLH Origins and StartupBus

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Jon Gottfried, Co-Founder MLH

Jon Gottfried, Co-Founder MLH

Jon Gottfried is a co-founder of Major League Hacking and a StartupBus Alumnus, former director and conductor

Applications are open!

Do you have what it takes to ride StartupBus EU?

Apply today


How did you get involved with StartupBus?

I heard about StartupBus in 2011. I had recently joined twitter and I didn’t have many followers and I started to follow a bunch of people in the tech space. I saw it popup in my timeline one day and so I applied on a whim but I didn’t really expect anything to come of it but I got an email from Justin Isaf who was the conductor that year to schedule an interview. While I was waiting to hear back I started to hustle a bit and used Twitter to find all the other people who were on StartupBus and kinda immersed myself in that world pretty quickly.

MLH has a weird long history. I actually registered the domain name majorleaguehacking.com in 2011, a week after I got back from StartupBus.

What drew you to StartupBus?

I honestly have no idea why I decided apply. I guess it was just crazy enough and just weird enough and just legit enough that I thought it was a real thing. That year, Justin was a great conductor, but the communications from the organization were almost non-existent. We would go on for weeks at a time without hearing anything and then the night before the buses were leaving you’d hear “Oh by the way we’re meeting here tomorrow at 6am at this location.” It was just very scrappy and I think that added to the appeal of it.

You were one of the first directors for StartupBus what was your experience like with that?

So I was on the bus in 2011 and then I was a conductor in 2013 and then I was director in 2014. This gave me some experience working with the organization and helping out at various levels and I also had some experience at that point from Twilio both for sponsoring and organizing events. So I teamed up with Andrew Pinzler – kind of an operations mastermind. We had two big goals for that year. One was to have a more process oriented approach to dealing with sponsors and conductors.

Our first season [at MLH] we had five events and now we have 75 every six months. We do about 150 events a year and it all started by just a random idea thrown around by a couple of people.

We  systematized communication and made the event sustainable from a financial standpoint. We made sure the conductors, the regional organizers, could focus on making their buses an awesome experience and recruiting the best people rather than worrying about logistical bullshit that could be more easily organized at a national level. So we enacted change there. Before that each conductor was responsible for their own sponsorship, operations, hotels. We centralized a lot of that to take it off their shoulders in order to change the focus for conductors to the culture on the bus.

Where did MLH come from? What was it like getting it off the ground?

MLH has a weird long history. I actually registered the domain name majorleaguehacking.com in 2011, a week after I got back from StartupBus. I talked to John Britton who also worked for Twilio and was on my team Lemonade Stand on the bus. We were kind of discussing the idea of making like a league for professional hackers – there were a lot of hackathons at that point – but nothing ever came of it. A couple years later, Swift, my co-founder and I, agreed to quit our jobs to work on something together but we didn’t really know what we were gonna work on.
Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 1.17.34 PM

The time came to quit our jobs and he decided to quit and I didn’t. I said I would stay for another six months. So Swift left his job and he was talking to people like Dave Fontenot and Tess Rinearson. He pitched this idea of ranking all the student hackathons, which were starting to grow in number and frequency.

We all kind of started to talk about the idea of Major League Hacking. Dave had started a list to rank them. So Swift reached out to me and said, “Hey can I use these domain names? I want to move forward with this thing.” And people were really into it, and it started to get a ton of traction.

Each year 50,000 students participate in our events. We do them in North America: US, Canada, Mexico and Europe: U.K., Spain, Romania, Germany and it’s growing really fast in Europe.

After six months, I quit my job and joined Swift and that was about almost two years ago. And it’s been going great ever since. Our first season we had five events and now we have 75 every six months. We do about 150 events a year and it all started by just a random idea thrown around by a couple of people.

How big is MLH and where is it represented?

Each year 50,000 students participate in our events. We do them in North America: US, Canada, Mexico and Europe: U.K., Spain, Romania, Germany and it’s growing really fast in Europe. We have still have a lot of work to do but it’s a big movement. One of the fun carry-overs that I’ve got to experience with both StartupBus and MLH was booking coach buses. I’ve had a lot of weird experiences with buses working both StatupBus and MLH.

One of the fun carry-overs that I’ve got to experience with both StartupBus and MLH was booking coach buses. I’ve had a lot of weird experiences with buses working both StatupBus and MLH.

One year on StartupBus got stuck in a freak ice storm and was on the side of the road for six hours and a woman came up and knocked on the door to use the bathroom. At MLH we had a bus full of students in Georgia near Atlanta that broke down halfway to an event and when we called the bus company to get a replacement bus the company told us they were going bankrupt and that we were shit outta luck. We had to find another way to get the kids off the side of the road. We ended up renting a ton of cargo vans and loaded them up. It was a weird thing. Coach buses are interesting to deal with.

What experience from StartupBus has helped you with MLH?

StartupBus is based on community and there are a lot of things I learned there about how to build a tight-knit group of people and I utilize that skill at MLH.

A million different things. I gained a lot of experience dealing with large scale operations and sponsorship – all of those things carried over to MLH. Also building a community. StartupBus is based on community and there are a lot of things I learned there about how to build a tight-knit group of people and I utilize that skill at MLH.

Check out Hack the Planet by MLH

The new season of MLH kicks off in September check out the events at mlh.io