From the category archives:

Headlines

The following is from a blog post by Burgher Jon:

I traded a couple tweets with Mike Capsambelis (@mikecaps) several weeks ago and it got me thinking about the bubble in tech investing.  The Pittsburgh startup scene is one of the fastest growing tech startup scenes around, for the full year of 2010 the VC dollars in our system were up almost 68% compared to a national increase of only 12%.  If this growth is bubble related, it would make Pittsburgh a likely target to become a GIANT splatter when the bubble bursts.  I’m not overly concerned about this though, and I’ll give you three reasons why…

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Since Groupon is now a household name, I was excited to see the news that ShowClix, a local startup and Innovation Works portfolio company, landed a partnership with them.

The partnership comes just after they experienced a 275% growth in new clients in 2010. Now with this new deal with group buy juggernaut Groupon, ShowClix’s is proving once again their local startup to watch.

I remember a few years ago when I first saw there ticket scanning doohickey at a local show. I thought, “What is this, there is no way this scanny thing is going to take down Ticketmaster”. I’m glad there making me put my foot in my mouth on that one.

ShowClix has also announced that there are over 100 new features for administrators of events. You check out the video below so see some of them in action. These new features add more robust social media intergeneration and tracking. Two very important thing to success in this Facebook and twitter dominated world.

ShowClix Introduces New Event Ticketing Admin from ShowClix on Vimeo.

Read the full press release after the jump.
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The following is from a blog post by Burgher Jon:

Pittsburgh’s own Accelerator, AlphaLab was in the news last week as a founding member of the TechStars Network. TechStars is a nationally renowned accelerator with centers in NYC, Boston, Boulder and Seattle. One of the primary men associated with it is Brad Feld, a guy I’ve mentioned several times on this blog. The TechStars Natwork was formed to help develop synergies with other accelerators across the country in conjunction with Barack Obama’s Startup America. I think the move positions AlphaLab well to take advantage of some network benefits and perhaps even some Federal help. Just exactly what ends up coming out of it, will be interesting to see.

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AlphaLab has been helping startups get off the ground for six cycles (has it been 3 years already?), so they have a nice pool of alumni to offer advice to new batches of companies.

Thankfully the advice they share is not always private. Last week AlphaLab posted a few highlights from what the latest grads had to share with the new guys.

  1. Launch Quickly. This is often the first piece of advice alumni offer up–and for good reason. Both a pillar of the lean startup model and adopted maxim of many startups, “shipping fast, and often” allows companies to test out market assumptions and use valuable user feedback to quickly pivot their product or service to fit the needs of their customers.
  2. Learn How to Say “No.” This refers both to taking on potential customers that will cause you more problems than you can handle, and the laundry list of features your customers will inevitabply want you to add.

Click here to read the rest of the advice the alumni had to offer. Take special note of number three and be sure to add this blog to your PR email list. Thanks!

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The following is from The Blog of Burgher Jon:

It occurs to me that I should probably give some space to Project Olympus on this blog. After I spoke last week about the number of CMU software engineering students who leave Pittsburgh (CMU Professor Lenore Blum estimates it’s 95%), I thought a project specifically designed to help keep them was worth noting. The project is known a Project Olympus. The goal, as you can see from the chart above, is to more actively place CMU (and by extension Pittsburgh) at the center of their most talented software engineers’ projects. If you click the picture above it will take you to their about page. They have a list of their probes online and while a disappointing number don’t appear to have gone anywhere, they can claim ReCAPTCHA has a huge success (acquired by Google).

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