Open and Social Innovation: Techolab determined to bring ‘just this’ for all

Editor’s Note: This story is republished from Shonika Proctor’s December 2011 monthly print column in I Love Chile English language newspaper where the article first appeared.

‘What if’ are two of the most powerful words found in the innovation and entrepreneurship space. They are the words that lead us to dream a bigger dream, play with possibilities and create solutions from the edge of our potential. Jesuit Priest Felipe Berríos SJ’s ‘What If’ question was:

What if we could eradicate extreme poverty for those living at the base of the economic pyramid in Chile?’

Before I finish the story of what happened next, it goes without saying that if I were to ask that question to 100 different people from different backgrounds, with or without varying levels of education, careers, socio-economic statuses and so forth, I could very well receive 100 different answers. And if I then grouped those 100 people together coupled with a social network and funding source to implement those ideas this would be Techolab and thus the power and potential of open and social innovation. Continue reading

Gled plays with Chile’s entrepreneurial reality

Editor’s Note: This story is  republished from Shonika Proctor’s February 2012 monthly print column in I Love Chile English language newspaper where the article first appeared.

Somewhere between the physical world and the virtual world, the creative world and the technical world, lies the world that Gled built.

Originally started as a project out of the Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María, UTFSM, (Chile’s leading Science, Technology and Engineering School) by classmates Aníbal Valencia, Juan Pablo León, Tomás Mardones and Gonzalo Vallejos, the multi-award winning company, Gled, has risen to become one of Latin America’s (and in many regards) one of the world’s leading providers of augmented reality (AR) customized applications. Continue reading

While you were chatting…A startup revolution was born

One of my friends was recently asking me about startups and how that world works. And he mentioned this to me in the context of the CNN documentary Black in America, which recently aired, where they were asking is Silicon Valley the new promised land for African Americans? (my thoughts in terms of my current work can be found on point #4).

First, my friends should know better than mentioning something related to a heavily media propagated message into a conversation in which they solicit my advice especially related to business.

And second, they know that my disruption mode is all’ways on (Translation: I like to argue for ‘the sport’ of it). So don’t have kittens when I say something you don’t want to hear. Anyway, I think the conversation started something along the lines of this….

From what I can recall, in the mid to late 1990’s you were spending all your free time chatting on AOL Black Voices when the startup revolution in Silicon Valley was born. And that reality is playing out now.

Continue reading

This Valentine’s day, let LoveChirp be your cupid!

Powered by Babelverse and Tropo, LoveChirp is a new service that helps lovers connect through sweet, sexy, romantic or hot recorded voice messages and allows the creators of the messages to get paid for acting as Cupid’s arrow.

Sweethearts around the world who use this service can pick a message among a set of thousands available in multiple languages, with different tones(sweet, sexy, funny,etc) and in different voices, or record their own. They can choose to sign their message or remain anonymous, which is especially useful for secret admirers.

LoveChirp simply asks for the phone number or email address of the subject of the message. The recipient will then get a phone call or email that plays the LoveChirp, and will have the possibility to respond.

Sending a message costs less than the price of a coffee. Continue reading

How to get great press without breaking the bank: 3 of 3 articles in a PR series

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post on public relations for your startup (3rd of 3 posts) submitted by Colombian based Fursos (NOW LIVE!) Here are the first and second articles.

A startup should NOT hire a publicist.

To quote Mark Cuban Never hire a PR firm.  A public relations firm will call or email people in the publications you already read, on the shows you already watch and at the websites you already surf.

Continue reading

ePig games surpasses 1,000,000 downloads

For those who thought that a small bootstrapping Chilean game design studio was only capable of competing in the space with larger more well-funded companies when (e)pigs fly, AndesBeat is predicting that the price of pork is going to increase considerably in the near future.

The award winning ePig games studio was the first company in Chile to develop an HTML5 game.

And now, Nicolás Palacios, ePig Games CEO, along with his co-founders Andres Cortes and Diego Palacios (who is also his brother) are celebrating another huge milestone as their ePig games series has busted through 1,000,000 downloads. Continue reading

How to Build a Killer Launch Campaign: 2 of 3 articles in a PR series

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post on public relations for your startup (2nd of 3 posts) submitted by Colombian based Fursos (NOW LIVE!) Here is the first article.

Paulo Coelho, best selling author of The Alchemist, just launched his latest book, Aleph.

 “I am trying to tell my publishers world wide that I don’t need to give interviews in major media to sell books. This is a big shift for them, but they are coming to my point of view. I decided to give no major media interviews with Aleph’s launching, and the results were astonishing: the book made the bestseller lists all over the world, except UK.”

If a major author is actively declining major media interviews, why shouldn’t you? Continue reading

Nobody cares about your company: 1 of 3 articles in a PR Series

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post on public relations for your startup (1st of 3 posts) submitted by Colombian based Fursos (launching Feb 2012). 

The truth hurts.  That platform you’ve been working on, the company you’ve built, the hours of sweat you’ve put into it.

Nobody cares.

You ping hundreds of reporters and never get a response.  You blast out a press release about your launch and get no coverage.

Why? Continue reading

Pullcolab: Pioneers of LatAm’s Open and Social Innovation Platforms

A week ago today, news surfaced that Sharon Chang, formerly of 19 Entertainment, has launched Yoxi, a new media platform for social innovation rockstars.

19 Entertainment is the company behind popular U.S. based TV shows such as American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance. This announcement comes on the heels of recent news from consumer electronics giant Philips, who also launched a social innovation platform just 3 months ago.

Back in 2009, Santiago, Chile based Pullcolab had a similar vision when they saw the power of open and social innovation layered over a virtual platform. And so the legend goes…

While we may not be in Kansas anymore, here in Latin America where more than an estimated 2/3 of the population lives in poverty, ‘open and social‘ innovation is still very much a vast, uninhibited and unexplored frontier. Continue reading