We're excited to announce that Obtiva has been acquired by Groupon. While we aren't accepting new business at the moment, we will continue to service existing clients. It's been our pleasure to work with some of best clients possible over the past 6 years, so thank you for getting us this far!
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions. Thank you!
Guess who's leading a presentation at the Web 2.0 Expo in New York this October?
To be accepted to speak at this lofty conference, you've gotta be smartsmartsmart, have a compelling topic that really stands out, and have absolutely no stage fright.
Kat Nelson-Reid fits the bill. Obtiva's intrepid VP travels to New York October 10-13 for the fifth annual Web 2.0 Expo, which attracts a huge audience of developers, designers, entrepreneurs, VCs, marketers and business strategists from around the globe.
Kat, along with Ingrid Alongi of Quick Left, Inc. in Boulder and Hao Truong from Foodzie (and formerly with Yahoo! for almost a decade), will present a session on "How to Speak Geek." In order to launch a digital product, or maintain the digital relevancy of an existing one, you need to know the parlance. Kat's session will guide attendees in hiring the right development team and learning the language to overcome communication barriers and pave the way to the creation of beautiful digital web and mobile applications.
The lineup of speakers at this Web 2.0 Expo is nothing short of mind-blowing, with execs from some of the world's most recognizable organizations along with exciting newcomers and accomplished business visionaries.
It's great to see Kat sharing the limelight with them. Anyone who knows Kat knows she is anything but geeky.... but she sure can talk the talk.
Noel Rappin continues to reel in (lasso?) the speaking engagements. He's been leading trainings and presentations around the country, and the invites to speak keep rolling in.
In August, he heads down south to Texas to lead a presentation at Lone Star Ruby. His session, titled "Being Correct is Only a Side Benefit: Improve Your Life with BDD," takes place the first day of the conference. He'll lead participants in building a complex program using a strict BDD process. Along the way, he'll convey how BDD enhances speed and code quality, reveal the five habits of highly successful tests, and show them how to best leverage existing tools to improve their coding life.
Everyone, meet Shay Howe.
Shay is a UI and UX developer with Pawngo who has a passion for building intuitive websites. Working as a freelancer in the past, he's built a solid portfolio of work for clients around the country, and he's also done some content management, SEO, branding and logo identity, copywriting, and print and graphic communication work. He's a Shay of all trades.
And on Monday, July 25, he's going to help TechWeek attendees understand how to establish a solid web design strategy that'll set you up for success. In one short hour, he'll outline for you the steps involved in properly researching and planning a website. He'll explain how to straetgize a site's architecture, visual design and development, and how to launch and grow a site with confidence.
Shay was born and raised in Lima, Ohio, earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Phoenix, and now calls Chicago home. In his spare time, he's an avid mountain biker, outdoorsman and musician. Spend your Monday evening with Shay and take home some tasty knowledge.
As I attend more and more Startup Weekends, I’m beginning to notice a trend in the attendees: expectations. The last couple of Startup Weekends that I was involved in, I played the part of “mentor” — going around to teams, discussing their project management and tech strategies, advising — which was great, but I’d like to point out a few things I think are important for a would be Startup Weekender to know going in.
If you know Startup Weekend, then you know it starts with pitches. Everyone that desires can bring an idea and give a 60-second pitch to the attendees. After all the pitches have been given, a vote is taken and people split up into to teams to work.
A question I get asked a lot, “What if my idea doesn’t get selected?” as to say “What am I going to do then?” My feeling is that in a lot of ways Startup Weekend is about practice. Practicing your pitch. Practicing working with a new team. Practicing working with constraints. Practicing your business development skills. Not having your idea selected shouldn’t signal the end for you.
The truth is that failure is at the heart of being a great entrepreneur, as long as you understand that failure doesn’t mean defeat. If your idea doesn’t get selected it could mean your pitch needs to be tweaked. Or maybe your idea targets the wrong market?
But don’t give up on Startup Weekend. Enjoy the company. Dig in to the challenge. Learn something new.
Startup Weekend is an amalgamation of people with different skills. Business majors, designers and developers are the biggest, all with something interesting to offer Startup Weekend. Once the voting completes there’s a mad dash for one type of attendee though: the developer.
I believe this is rooted in the fallacy that you are required to produce a fully working product by the end of startup weekend. The goal is to produce a viable business plan that you could pitch to someone and presumably get funding; in the case of Startup Weekend your “someone” is the judges.
The definition of viable reads:
Capable of working successfully; feasible
Success in this context is defined as attracting customers and making a profit. Unfortunately having the mostly complete product does not guarantee you will find customers. More likely, going heads down and building a complete product without getting feedback from customers means you will have features that no one will use and/or damages your product. This is a waste of your most precious resource: time.
Where do I think your time is best spent in a Startup Weekend?
I believe if you become comfortable with these truths and work together cross-functionally to build the best pitch possible, you are on your way to having a successful Startup Weekend experience. Even if you don’t win you’ve networked, got some practice in building a startup and you’ve learned something about your idea that could help you take it to the next level and build something amazing.
Before you write your first line of code, take a step back for a minute and ask yourself: what's the best platform for your web project?
Tyler Jennings leads a TechWeek training session to help you uncover the answer. Open vs. closed source. Java vs. .NET vs. Ruby and a hundred other languages. Picking the right platform can be daunting and the wrong choice will hamstring your project from the get-go. Tyler will discuss simple principles to guide you in choosing the best development platform.
Tyler Jennings is one of Obtiva's earliest employees and a prolific developer whose work is the foundation of some of Obtiva's highest profile projects. You can usually find him working on site with a client, coaching and mentoring the developer team. Like every Obtivian, Tyler is entrenched in agile practices and the software craftsmanship movement.
He knew he wanted to be a programmer since he was a kid growing up in Texas, and since joining Obtiva in 2005, he's become a visible face in the local technology community. He's a frequent presenter at industry events nationwide and an instructor and course designer at ObtivaU. And of course he's a blogger and a tweeter.
Obtiva has a long history of partnering with 8th Light - like us, it's a top notch agile development firm with immensely talented craftsmen who produce outstanding work. We're partnering with 8th Light to produce and host the third annual Software Craftsmanship North America conference this fall.
Micah Martin is the president and co-founder of 8th Light, and we are fortunate to have him lead a workshop for TechWeek attendees.
Micah points out that 10 years ago, Ruby was the unknown gem of programming languages; today, it's gone mainstream. Now, Clojure has the feel of Ruby 10 years ago. It's fresh, sexy, powerful and relatively unused. He'll explore Clojure's Lisp heritage and show how it fits into the world of functional languages. He'll talk about software transactional memory, show how it provides all the tools needed to build an OO architecture (even though Clojure isn't an object oriented language) and share some real-world uses for Clojure.
Micah is one of the principal authors, publishers and signatories of the Manifesto for Software Craftsmanship. He's a respected speaker who has led presentations around the globe, and he's known for his prolific open source work.
Micah's TechWeek training is a great way to stay on the leading edge and gain familiarity with Clojure, learning from an esteemed and accomplished craftsman. This is most definitely an hour well spent. We look forward to seeing you at Micah's training Sunday morning!
Ruby on Rails is sort of like that really popular girl in school who everybody wants to get to know better and everybody wants to go out with.
And Noel Rappin, well, he's like the best teacher in school whose classes everyone signs up for and who has the best reputation and who really connects with his students.
So this training session is a little bit of TechWeek heaven: "Welcome to Rails" with Noel Rappin on Saturday, July 23 from 3:30 to 5:00 pm.
In an hour and a half, Noel will provide you with a solid introduction to Rails and explain how and why Rails makes web development manageable and fun. You'll understand why Rails has become hugely popular and the web framework of choice for so many.
Noel is a senior consultant at Obtiva who knows his stuff. He is a sough-after speaker who presents at conferences and leads training sessions around the country. An accomplished developer, instructor and author, he is fluent in multiple programming languages and has been working with agile development since before it was called agile.
Noel dabbled in standup comedy for a time, but discovered that the audiences at developer conferences and training courses were far more receptive to his material.
Don't miss this TechWeek training session... it's going to be a popular one. Just like that girl in high school.
Attention All TechWeek Tech Geeks:
Here it is... your chance to learn from Groupon's director of engineering.
Shinji Kuwayama develops infrastructure, operations and growth for Groupon. He leads several Groupon development teams and helps to ensure that the Groupon.com website keeps on whirring through exponential global growth and massive bursts of traffic. His current assignments include site performance, customer growth, hiring and international back-office engineering. He's an avid Rubyist and you might find him hanging out on GitHub.
When he's not making Groupon tick, he spends time working with November Eleven, a nonprofit that supports independent media, research and humanitarian aid efforts.
Shinji leads a TechWeek training session on a topic that's close to his heart - "Scaling a Development Team." He'll talk about how to preserve a startup culture while also becoming a larger, more mature team, and he'll field your questions about scaling and building fast-moving development teams.
His session runs from 3:30 to 4:30 pm Monday, July 25 at the Merchandise Mart. You know the drill by now - register now on the TechWeek website.
Most software geeks are really good at what they do. They possess strong and varied skills: coding in multiple languages, testing, running migrations, managing highly complex files.
But let's be honest: sometimes software engineers can be, um, lacking when it comes to public speaking.
Presenting technical ideas in an articulate, engaging way is a key skill for programmers that can help dramatically advance their ideas -- and their careers. Jeff Cohen is here to help you learn valuable public speaking skills in a TechWeek workshop Sunday, July 24 from 5 - 6 pm called "Talk Tech to Me." His session is a "Lightning Talks 101" tutorial that shows you how to organize a presentation, speak effectively to an audience and prepare live demos.
Jeff is a professional trainer - he's the founder of Purple Workshops, a company that delivers high impact, one-day technical training sessions for agile software teams. He's the co-author of the book "Rails for .NET Developers," and has worked with object-oriented programming languages and Microsoft application frameworks for more than 15 years. He's a madly passionate hockey fan and a musician, and he also loves to tweet.
Don't miss Jeff's talk at TechWeek at the Merchandise Mart. You can log in and register here - and remember, TechWeek training sessions are included with your TechWeek Conference & Expo pass at no additional cost.