Who's Who in the NYC Digital Media and Technology Scene

I’d like to start doing some short interviews with local notables. Who would you like to see get four of five questions to answer here? CEO’s? Entreprenuers? Investors? Give us some specific names and ideas by commenting in this post.

Posted on Friday, December 1, 2006 at 04:41PM by Registered CommenterCharlie O'Donnell in | Comments10 Comments | References1 Reference

Harvest Time Tracker Review

Harvest is an online time-tracker from Iridesco. It was principally designed with clients who bill hourly in mind, but it scales nicely and can track groups or entire offices with simple group management and alerting features.

You can see Part 1 and Part 2 of a video walk-through I created if you’re interested in how the application works. You’ll need to hit the full-screen link beneath each video in order to see the features in any detail. :)

Harvest is a simple online time tracking application built and maintained by Iridesco, a New York-based web design and consulting firm (among many other things, they created the template for this blog and our parent site).

I met Danny Wen and Shawn Liu, the founders of Iridesco, at their New York office and talked to them about the impetus for Harvest and their plans for the future. They Googled time tracking to show me there was no shortage of applications in this space. But despite the crowded market, they have found very few applications tailored to small businesses.

Friends and colleagues in consulting and design shops echoed their frustration over the lack of a simple solution, and the partners smelled opportunity. Starting in December 2005, the pair set out to create an application “built to the needs of the small business community,” Shawn said.

As for what’s coming down the pipe for Harvest. Danny pointed me to their blog and the just-released API for Harvest. It has limited functionality at the moment, but a more full-featured release is in the works.

The other imminent development is a Mac widget. I got a preview and it efficiently ports the one-click stopwatch (definitely one of Harvest’s UI highlights) onto the desktop of your Mac, making it that much easier to track task-specific time without getting bogged down in a hundred clicks.

Future developments planned for Harvest include an input for upfront time estimates to track your expected versus actual time put into a project, and rates to show you what your billable hours are producing for you income-wise in Harvest reporting.

Long-term, the pairs’ goal is to make Harvest into “more than just time-tracking software,” Danny said. Eventually, they plan to build a full suite of productivity tools into Harvest. They told me that they are comfortable with their present growth trajectory, and not interested in taking any outside capital.

Check out my video review if you want a closer look at the program’s features. Having used Harvest myself for a billable project in October, the bottom line is the software is easy to use and efficiently scales to administer multiple users. So whether you’re a one/two-man shop or managing several teams, Harvest for simple time tracking is definitely worth a look.

Jonah Keegan is an entrepreneur with a business, a blog and a few other things.

Posted on Thursday, November 30, 2006 at 09:51AM by Registered CommenterJonah Keegan in | Comments3 Comments

Join us for the nextNY Holiday Gathering! December 13th.

Deck the halls… Light the candles… Tag your wishlists on del.icio.us! It’s time to gather with your New York tech friends and celebrate the holiday season at the nextNY Holiday Gathering. Join us and celebrate our fantastic first year.

When: December 13th 7PM-10PM

Apple Restaurant and Bombar
17 Waverly Pl (Cross Street: Between Greene Street and Mercer Street)
New York, NY 10003
(212) 473-8888

Who: Other up and coming members of New York City’s technology and digital media community.

If you’re new to the group or thinking about joining, come out and meet us. We’re a fun bunch and we love great company.

If you’re thinking of coming by, let us know by adding your name to the RSVP wiki just so we can get a sense of how many people to expect.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Posted on Monday, November 27, 2006 at 05:43PM by Registered CommenterCharlie O'Donnell in , | CommentsPost a Comment

Thanks for the Metaverse

Last year, I was involved in organizing an event at Stanford featuring Linden Lab’s CEO and their online product Second Life. It was one of the most surreal topics that we had hosted at VLAB, talking about products and entire economies that don’t really exist. I knew this would be a field to watch, or even better, to participate in the building of related business models.

Jerry Paffendorf and I met quite randomly years ago at a wireless industry conference. He’s now working as Futurist in Residence at the Electric Sheep Company.

I moved from Silicon Valley to NYC for several reasons, including my contention that there must exist technologically-forward, alternative type companies oozing with style outside of the Valley. If a company that architects virtual properties within Second Life and other Virtual Worlds is not such a company, I don’t know what is. They are located within tres chic Williamsburg, Brooklyn (if you’re from the Valley, think Berkeley/Oakland vibe).

Jerry organized an event held the night after Thanksgiving entitled “Thanks for the Metaverse”. 30 or so geeks and geekettes were in attendance, a well-known VRML pioneer gave a presentation, and lots of discussions ensued. I really felt like I was back in the Valley, or perhaps Burning Man…

I’m surprised it’s taken this long, but it was in fact the first party I’ve been where people introduced themselves first w/ their “IRL” name and then their avatar name. Interesting sub-topics included the “CopyBot issue”, real concerns that virtual bling creators have regarding their creations being copied/stolen. The presenter also declared that there likely never will be an actual Metaverse, as the variety of virtual worlds are tough to connect. Of course this was met with cries of:

“The Metaverse is dead— long live the Metaverse!”

Ken Berger is a serial entrepreneur and mentor capitalist who recently made the Valley -> Alley switch. His bio and contact information can be found here.

Posted on Monday, November 27, 2006 at 10:37AM by Registered CommenterKen Berger in | CommentsPost a Comment

Registration now open for ContentNext Mixer in NYC: Dec 5th

If you’re in the business of monetizing content and you’re HQed in NYC, you should go to the ContentNext mixer on December 5th.

Registration is now open, and, if history is any indication, it won’t be open for long. You can read more about the event on the PaidContent.org site, but I’ll add my own endorsement of the event:

I went to the last event over the summer and found it to be one of the best, most professional networking events I’ve ever been to. It’s a collection of C-level execs from nearly all of the top content companies in the City. Last event had Arthur Sulzberger, Publisher of the New York Times, and this time, the editorial guest will be Gordon Crovitz, publisher of the Wall Street Journal, president of the Consumer Media Group and EVP-Dow Jones.

It’s a crowd worth mingling with.

Posted on Monday, November 27, 2006 at 09:53AM by Registered Commenterinnonate in | CommentsPost a Comment