Thursday, February 15, 2018

Win a pass to MWC18 with Swedish Beers & Trustonic!

The lovely people at Trustonic have come up trumps again with a lovely Mobile World Congress pass giveaway. We have five passes to give away. Closing date is Wednesday 21 February 2018. All you have to do is answer one question and provide us with your contact details. The form is below.

Good luck and hope to see you in Barcelona!

(Travel/accommodation not included)


Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Swedish Beers - #13 Barcelona Edition, 2018 - Wednesday 28 February

Plans are afoot for the next edition of Swedish Beers in Barcelona in 2018! (Doesn't it come around quickly?!)... We will be in a NEW venue! More on that soon. The format will be just the same - a relaxed evening, no formalities, no presentations. Just come with an open mind, be prepared to see friends old and new, chat, enjoy a drink or three (courtesy of our sponsors) and have yourself a good time all whilst extolling (or not) the virtues of our mobile connected world.

The Swedish Beers crew will be on hand to welcome you as usual and we'll have the friendliest bar staff in town.

**Two sponsors confirmed. More to come. And there's room for more on top of that. If you'd like to sponsor and join the fun, please get in touch with Helen to discuss. All budgets catered for.** 

See you in Barcelona.




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There may be a queue to get in at times but we usually manage to get pretty much everyone in who wants to so don't be put off! All are welcome to attend if you are working in and around the mobile industry and enjoy a good chat. You may be asked for ID on entry. You must be pre-registered to attend the event. We reserve the right to refuse entry.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Geo-Graffiti reappears for Christmas

I do love it when people subvert technology and find a completely different use case for it. I first came across geo-graffiti back in 2005 when I attended the Freqout exhibition at the ICA. There were a selection of different exhibits created by young people who lived in and around the Ladbroke Grove Estate and engaged with the Vital Regeneration charity there. I wrote up my impressions of the evening here. My favourite exhibit that night was the geo-graffiti one.

Geo-Graffiti output from Battersea Park.
Freqout Exhibition, London 2005
"Geo-Graffiti - this was my favourite. Led by artists Jeremy Wood and programmer Hugh Pryor, kids went around with mobile GPS (global positioning systems) devices and traced their path on earth to create drawings. Back at base the 'drawings' were translated into a manageable size so that the likes of you and I can see them and make some sense of them. They started with creating simple shapes and then graduated to creating their signatures up to 400m wide at Battersea Park. Another project in this installation was to map the local area and mark the places most significant to them. In doing this, they created a map of the Churchill Gardens Estate including the best chip shop in the area. All good stuff." I've found an article here with some images of the output.

We're seeing more of this kind of thing now as mapping apps are more pervasive. And especially for the festive season, according to the Evening Standard, cyclist and Strava Artist, Anthony Hoyte, has created a giant snowman using the exercise and route sharing app, Strava. It took 10 hours to complete - that's pretty gruelling. One of the lovely things about it though is that it goes right through my local neighbourhood in South London! It's lovely to see that 12 years on, humans are making art out of whatever tools they have to hand. 

Day 24/25 Blogmas

Friday, December 22, 2017

It's predictions season... Here are GP Bullhound's Top 10 for 2018

GP Bullhound, a leading technology advisory and investment firm, has released its 2018 Technology Predictions Report. Their Top Technology Predictions for 2018 include (comments are mine):

1. Tech giants face political scrutiny 
Inevitable I think. It's not just political scrutiny, I think tech giants will be under greater scrutiny from their customers and users, especially around ethics and security issues (see next point).

2. Consumer cyber security becomes a number one issue
About time - our digital lives feel so precarious when so many companies and organisations are getting hacked for personal details.

3. Mobile usage will exceed TV in China 
I haven't followed the Chinese market much to date but this is certainly interesting if China is one of your (potential) markets.

4. Language recognition and translation becomes everyday 
Hmm, I've never really thought about this much, but I do like the automatic translations of Facebook posts. Some of the translations are pretty good.

5. The death of email 
I've seen this prediction in the past, but it never seems to happen. Email is still very effective when it comes to marketing, I can't see it dying in 2018. I think we're reducing reliance on it, but death is probably too strong a word.

6. International labour arbitrage flourishes
This is interesting. As cost of living increases, small tech companies move to cheaper tech hubs. This bodes well for UK cities like Leeds and Manchester and European hubs like Berlin and Barcelona. This kind of activity has been touted for a year or two now but I see no sign of tech start-up activity decreasing in London. If anything, it's still growing.

7. Organic expansion and consolidation of software sector 
The return of SAAS. If SAAS is your thing, then I highly recommend Mark Littlewood's Business of Software conferences in the US and Europe.

8. Industry 4.0
The digital transformation and manufacturing i.e. the next industrial revolution. Not my area of expertise but feels kind of inevitable. The rise of the robots and AI etc.

9. The rise of Blockchain and ICOs 
No big surprise there base on activity in the last month alone. ICO stands for Initial Coin Offering (Wikipedia definition here) and is the crypto currency equivalent of IPO. Blockchain and crypto currency are topics I plan to learn more about and cover more in 2018.

10. Augmented reality breaks through 
I think this will happen. Arguably, it's already happened as the little dot on Google Maps that moves according to our position is Augmented Reality. It's so pervasive, we hardly notice it. Note that AR is not VR. They are similar but different.

The report is well researched and each point is examined in some detail so I think it's well worth a read. They also review their predictions from last year and they weren't far off... You can download the report for free from the following link in exchange for your contact details.

Day 22/25 Blogmas

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Ever stuck for where to go for a late night drink or meal in London?

My friend Emma has the answer for you with her 24 Hour London app (available on iOS and Android). The idea behind the app is to provide people with information about bars, restaurants and clubs that are open late at night with the added bonus of special offers of discounts and even free drinks at some of the establishments listed.

The app is in early stages but is gaining a following and Emma's on a mission to capitalise on that. Londoners, if you're ever out and about at night, then do download the app - it's free and I expect you'll find it useful.

As part of Emma's initial marketing push, she's using Thunderclap to help spread the word about 24 Hour London in January. Thunderclap simply posts a tweet or a status update on your feed at the time and day allotted and that's it. It doesn't ask you to connect your contacts or spam your friends by email. It costs you nothing save for a few moments of your time.

Your assistance will mean more downloads for her and more footfall for the venues she works with and maybe free drinks for you and your friends if you use the app. Plus, you'll probably find out about places near where you live or work that you never knew opened late at night. I'm also really interested to see how this campaign works. I've never tried Thunderclap. If there's any insight from the campaign, I'll share it here in due course.

Click on the link here or the image above, you too can add your voice to the campaign.

Day 21/25 Blogmas

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

A century of voting for women in the UK and the #BEGC campaign

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan
announced his major new gender equality campaign
#BehindEveryGreatCity #BEGC
Photographer: Caroline Teo.
I've just been reading about London Mayor, Sadiq Khan's new campaign. To mark the centenary of the first women in the UK winning the right to vote, and to drive forward gender equality across the city of London, the Mayor has launched a year-long women's equality campaign called #BehindEveryGreatCity. You can read more about it here on Marie Claire and here on the Mayor's website.

The campaign includes a year of promoting women's art on the underground, a series of events, initiatives to tackle gender pay gap, including men in the conversation (after all, this is about equality for all and not men vs women) and in Parliament Square, the first statue of a woman will be unveiled - Suffragist leader Millicent Fawcett. If you're ever wandering around London, you will see that although there are a lot of statues in Central London, there are very few statues of women. This sounds like a great campaign and I look forward to participating in it next year. Maybe 2018 will be the year of the woman, at least in London.

It's hard to believe that both my grandmothers were born in an age where women did not have the vote. And although they got the vote as they grew up, their mothers and their grandmothers did not. It is worth noting that it was only some women who got the vote in 1918. You had to be over 30 and fulfil certain property criteria. It wasn't until ten years later in 1928, that all women over 21 got the vote and had voting equality with men. That's not very long ago.

I shall be mulling over all of this during the Christmas Holidays and thinking about how to support both the Mayor's initiative and also support the female entrepreneurs and female execs working in mobile. There will at least be some more of my meet-ups for women working in and around mobile, but with a bit of luck, I'll come up with something new. Meanwhile, if you have any ideas, feel free to share.

Day 20/25 Blogmas