This week, WBC had the unique opportunity to welcome attendees of the International Technology Manufacturing Show at McCormick Place. More than 1,000 exhibiting companies occupy 1 million net square feet of exhibit space at the show, which is held every even-numbered year in Chicago and attracts more than 82,000 buyers and sellers from 116 countries.
We built our Site Selector web-based mapping tool using open-source technology allowing us to easily add geo-data, and end-users to intuitivly toggle layers on a map. For example, universities, industrial districts, and commercial real estate can be added so the user can get a feel for which areas of the city have a convergence those things. In this blog post I discuss a bit about the process of building the tool.
Monthly emails will feature related innovation metrics along with news and statistical insights.
Last week World Business Chicago hosted a delegation of visiting journalists from the United Nations Press Corps. The global contingent of reporters came from Chinese newspapers, Japanese magazines, Swedish public radio and more. We took them on a behind-the-scenes tour into the exciting world of Chicago’s innovation ecosystem, including Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy, 600 West Chicago (home of Groupon & Lightbank) and the startup incubator, Excelerate Labs.
Built in Chicago (BiC) is a connector for, and promoter of Chicago’s fast-growing entrepreneurial ecosystem in the digital technology sector. The grass roots, social website has been very popular and works well as a connector, but in order to take it to the next level and begin ramp up the promotion side, BiC was in need of a stronger identity. As a member of the committee to develop a BiC logo, I’d like to share some insights into the process.
Chicago-based Groupon is number 5 on Fast Company's The Worlds 50 Most Innovative Companies list. CEO, Andrew Mason's take on what makes Chicago's startup scene different than that of Silicon Valley raises interesting questions about Chicago's tech talent pool.
I recently returned from what may be the largest geek-fest in the world, the South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) new media conference in Austin, TX. My brain sufficiently crammed with new information, I got to thinking about the growing number of such fests here in Chicago. 2011 in particular looks to be shaping up as an exciting year for these events in Chicago.
CrowdPitch invites tech-oriented entrepreneurs to present their ideas to a panel of startup experts and an audience of peers and spectators. Through the allocation of “FUN” money, audience members “fund” their favorite idea(s) at the end of the evening. The Chicago event offered a prize package from various sponsors that amounted to $5,500 in startup assistance for the crowd favorite.
Over the past year I’ve had the privilege of dipping a toe into the torrent of energy that is Chicago’s innovation ecosystem. This fast-growing and quickly evolving amalgamation of entrepreneurs, inventors, academics, designers, startup companies, business incubators, events, publications, and investors are collaborating across disciplines to make Chicago an epicenter of the technology world.