iStrategyBlabs

GE Garages DC Opens – Remake The Capital With Your Fellow Innovators!

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Are you a maker, hacker, tinkerer or innovator of some kind? If so you’re going to love GE Garages DC.

From March 21 to – April 9th, GE is opening up a hands-on maker space pop-up right in the Golden Triangle area of downtown DC (map).

The full calendar is here – register FAST before everything books up. Use #Garages2014 for live updates.

iStrategyLabs will be powering several sessions including a Founders Forum, Entrepreneur & Investor Panel (RSVP), and several design/build sessions where people will create a Weather Clock. GE has also graciously sponsored this month’s DC Tech Meetup where over 800 people will come out to see demos by early stage start-ups.

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In the past iStrategyLabs has worked with GE on their Garages Program at SXSW. If you haven’t see it yet – have a look at the GE Social Fridge we built and the full GE Garages experience, powered by the Sub Rosa crew:


GE Garages DC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introducing “Hypermind” — A Quarterly Publication by iStrategyLabs

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Say hello to Hypermind: our very own in-house publication created entirely on iBooks Author.

Whether you’re a marketer, maker or designer, Hypermind is your guide for exploring the possibilities of creative technology. Each edition includes interviews, insights, and experiments gathered from innovators across the globe, helping you discover secret weapons for conquering your next big adventure.

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This inaugural edition of Hypermind seeks to explore “The Internet of Things” — investigating how brands/startups/marketers have leveraged readily accessible technology to create innovative products & experiences. We’ve tapped some big names (from Budweiser to GE) and spoke with some stars in the making in order to provide a rapid fire snapshot of trends we’ve seen, and to illuminate a path for projects to come.

Download your copy of Hypermind from the iBooks store HERE. (Keep in mind: it’s an iBook, so you do need to have iBooks installed!).

 

#DCTech goes to SXSW

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Half a dozen iStrategyLabs team members are here @SXSW. Check out this list of our must-do events, cool sessions, and killer speakers (oh and parties) hosted by DCers.

 

 

Weird vs. Wonderful: 4 New Products That Require a Comfort Shift

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The Oscar nominated film “Her,” which focuses on a man’s intense relationship with an operating system, has left many moviegoers sufficiently ”creeped out.” In fact, a completely made-up graph will show you (based entirely on my own personal experience and opinion) how certain groups of tech users viewed “Her:”

 Her Chart

If you think about it, a lot of the mannerisms and behaviors we find “normal” today would have made someone uncomfortable 10 or 20 years ago. Have you ever walked down the street and seen someone seemingly talking to him or herself? A few years ago they were crazy — now they’re obviously just chatting on their bluetooth.

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Even Siri, today’s closest publicly released technology to Samantha, is not fond of “Her.”

“Her” is unsettling because it’s somewhat believable. We’ve seen it before. We experienced the debut of bluetooth headsets and Apple’s Siri and have since adjusted to handsfree talking and asking an electronic voice for directions. We’ve seen the addition of geolocation tags and slowly become okay with people constantly telling us exactly where they are.

Technology is constantly altering our behavior, language, and way of thinking. To many, these advancements are startling at first; but slowly we adapt, and before we know it the things that used to be unnatural become second nature. That being said, sometimes “creepy” is simply unavoidable. As a tech company, we’ve had to become pretty comfortable walking the line of weird and wonderful.

Here are a few examples of products that we feel have the potential to conquer eerie and radically change our lives for the better.

1) iBeacon/Estimote

An Estimote is a small, wireless device, that, when placed in a physical space, broadcasts tiny radio signals to smart devices using Bluetooth LE. You don’t even need to have your phone on or be logged into an app to use it.

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2) Social Cooler

The Social Cooler uses Bluetooth LE technology to give you a buzz. When 4 people are within range of the Social Cooler, it pops open for your beverage-guzzling enjoyment.

3) Project Tango

A 5’’ phone capable of tracking the device’s motion in full 3D, real-time, as you hold it. The implications of this are huge- you could automatically have extremely detailed building maps and dimensions without doing a thing.

Google project tango 3D mapping graphic

 

4) Social Radar

SocialRadar is an app that provides real-time information about the people around you. It combines your phone’s location with information pulled across social networks to tell you who is around, how you know them, and what they have been up to.

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What new products out there are making you uncomfortable?

The LED Cave Sign: Powered By Electric Imp & Arduino

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As our company has continued to grow our desire for common work space has increased.  We recently decided to turn our “Dev Cave” into a multipurpose meeting area — allowing for our team to take client calls, have project check-ins, and work together productively in an enclosed space.  We initially mounted an “On Air” sign above the  Cave’s door that was activated via a button on the wall. The system worked, but there was room for improvement.  Enter: “The LED Cave Sign”.

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The LED Cave Sign is powered by an Electric Imp and an Arduino, with a simple webpage acting as the control center. An iPad inside the Cave runs the webpage and has a multiple buttons that allow people to control the display. When the user taps one of the buttons on the iPad, a signal is sent to the Electric Imp, which then sends a signal to an Arduino Mega. The Arduino then relays the information to the LED array, and there you have it!

 

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