Last night I went to (and presented at) the Seattle Tech Startups monthly meetup at the Seattle Public Library on Capitol Hill. I had a fantastic time. The crowd started at about 30 and maxed out at probably 50, as people straggled in partway through. And, strangely enough, speaking in front of 50 strangers didn’t make me freeze up and start drooling (I think). My presentation went well. My topic was a bit dry – especially compared to Hillel Cooperman’s inspiring talk — but that’s the nuts and bolts of software development for you. SOMEONE has to be boring. 🙂
Mostly I’m just glad I put myself out there and gave a talk about something that I know and love and do pretty good work in. I put myself in the arena. Throughout my life I’ve tended not to be that person, but this startup experience is so fulfilling that I find myself actively enjoying things that I normally avoided before.
Hillel Cooperman presented after I completed. Listening to Hillel was a revelation. I’ve heard of him, obviously, most memorably when he was ranked the #1 Entrepreneur Blogger in Seattle by Marcelo Calbucci of Sampa. He’s got a great thing going at Jackson Fish Market, not in terms of producing 1,000,000 dollars a month, but in terms of having a viable, fun business built on terms set by the founders. No outside funding. Lots of creativity. Lots of, well, thinking about what makes cool products and services, then actually going out and getting it done. If I was 21 I would gobble up one of the intern spots JFM is offering this summer.
Afterwards I met quite a few super-interesting people, and put some faces to Twitter friends’ names, which was very neat. I’ll definitely be a regular attendee at STS meetups in the future.
Maybe the best part? Seeing the Seattle Startup Weekend crowd roll in. Shout out to Marina, Adam, Scott, Leo, Rob, Adam, Jocelyn, Nathan, and I’m sure I’m missing one or two.
p.s. My slide show can be found on SlideShare.