TechFuelLaunchMemphis’ latest TechFuel networking event was all about atmosphere.  This past Thursday, Memphis technologists, media, creatives and entrepreneurs assembled at the top of Clark Tower to meet old friends, make new connections and have a great time doing it.  The evening was graciously sponsored by MPACT Memphis, who share LaunchMemphis’ mission to promote growth in the Memphis entrepreneurial community.

The LaunchMemphis group has been hosting these networking evenings as part of its ongoing effort to bring focus to entrepreneurial activities in Memphis, TN, and to deliver new technology business startups to the economy.  The organization was very successful in making progress towards this goal last year.  In that spirit, they have designed a schedule of events for 2009 that will continue moving Memphis to the forefront of the business community.

Upcoming on the LaunchMemphis Calendar are:

MPACT MemphisSocialCamp Memphis – March 6 & 7
Location: Memphis College of Art
SocialCamp Memphis is an unconference focusing on Social Media and Social Networking.  Just imagine a conference where the morning is comprised of designated speakers/topics, and the afternoon is comprised of focused discussions and impromptu presentations that are decided on by the attendees.  There will be a networking event the evening of March 6th, and the main event during the day on March 7.  See more information at the SocialCamp site and Facebook pageRegister early!

Startup Weekend Memphis 2: Back by Popular Demand – May 29, 30, & 31
Location: EmergeMemphis and Mercury Launchpad
Startup Weekend recruits a highly motivated group of technologists and entrepreneurs to build a community and new business ventures in a weekend in a short 54 hours.  These motivated individuals come together form teams and decide what to make. Attendees are responsible for bringing the ideas, desire, and passion and walk out of the room with a brand new businesses launched or started.  Startup Weekend is a national program that has once again selected Memphis, TN as one of the cities that it will visit this year.  See more information and don’t forget to register.

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blogpost by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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Universe of Dreams Tweetup

January 30, 2009

Dave Barger and Neal ConanThe Social Media Expedition explored new frontiers in their last Tweetup at the Universe of Dreams concert at the Germantown Performing Arts Centre sponsored by LunaWeb. It was an evening of great food, and otherworldly experiences.

We kicked off the night at Rain, a new sushi bar in Cordova, TN, where we experienced beautiful food, and a great atmosphere. There was a lot of enjoyable conversation, and several of us had the opportunity to meet some folks we had only known from twitter.

SushiWe left Rain just in time to have wine and hors d’oeuvres provided by the friendly people at GPAC. We spent the hour before the show chatting in the green room and looking at photographs of some of GPAC’s most memorable performers.

The Universe of Dreams performance was the highlight and centerpiece of our Tweetup. An incredible performance (as always) put on by GPAC, that feautured NPR’s Neal Conan, Ensemble Galilei, and giant projected images from the Hubble Telescope. Conan read excerpts from some the greatest minds of the past several centuries, expressing their awe at the scope of the night sky, while beautifully displayed images gave meaning to his words. Thanks to all this and an incredible score of Celtic music, the evening proved to be a wonderful multimedia event, that was truly expeditionary.

Thanks to all who participated and made it such an enjoyable night. Join our Facebook Page to stay updated on future Expedition Tweetups.

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blogpost by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

Making BarCamp Work for You

October 29, 2008

It’s usually not hard to walk into a conference unprepared and find something useful along the way that you can take back with you. However, since BarCamp Memphis is so much more than a conference, here are some ways you can go about getting the most out of your BarCamp experience.

Come Ready to Present
This is first on the list because it is simultaneously one of the most beneficial and least used BarCamp options. Speaking gets you noticed, helps you network, and lets other people know what your expertise is. Not to mention, sharing helpful info is great for the Karma. In keeping with promoting the sharing spirit of BarCamp, if you come prepared with a topic to present to your fellow Campers, BarCamp Memphis is free for you. Otherwise a small fee will go to help defray the cost of the conference.

What not to do

Don’t turn your presentation into a live infomercial for your company. BarCamp is about learning, networking, and sharing, and people will notice if you’re shamelessly plugging your brand.
Give your presentation a catchy title, but don’t get so focused on it that people can’t figure out what you’re speaking on. Topic clarity helps everyone.

Join the Conversation

BarCamp Memphis is about networking, making connections, and fostering a forward-thinking tech community in Memphis. The presentations will be a great learning experience for everyone, but your biggest benefit for the day will be from the people that you meet. BarCamp will be a focal point for movers and shakers in the tech community and will be a great place where people with ideas can meet people with talent. Don’t let that opportunity go! Bring your business card, shake hands, speak up, share your ideas, and brainstorm for new ones. Whatever you do, you’ll get more out of your BarCamp experience if you avoid being a wallflower.

Vote

BarCamp Memphis is happening right after election day, so the importance of voting should not be lost on anyone. Be sure you arrive early enough to vote on the topics for the day. Voting makes sure that topics of the day are relevant to you, which is, after all, what makes BarCamp different from everything else.

BarCamp Memphis is on November 8! In the meantime, here are some other great blogs about BarCamp to check out!

What is BarCamp?
LunaWeb

Launch Memphis Rocks Social Media in September
LunaWeb

BarCamp Tips
LaLunaBlanca

Attn Entrepreneurs and Would-Be Entrepreneurs: BarCamp Memphis is Coming
Paul Ryburn

BarCamp Memphis Planning Underway
LunaWeb

BarCamp Evolution
LaLunaBlanca

BarCamp Fee Discussion on Twitter
LaLunaBlanca

BarCamp Memphis – Calling All Thought Leaders
One Half Amazing

BarCamp Memphis: November 2008
Conmergence

BarCamp Memphis 2008 – Be There, Share, Learn
LaunchMemphis

What is BarCamp?

October 23, 2008

With BarCamp Memphis less than 3 weeks away, it seems time to answer the question, once and for all, “What is BarCamp?

Let’s begin by deciding what BarCamp, most definitely, is not. BarCamp is not every other conference you’ve ever been to. The ones with cold coffee and colder speakers discussing topics that have been decided, possibly months in advance, with little or no audience input. It is not something you go to planning to sit still, look straight ahead, and try not to cough… or snore. It is the un-conference.

BarCamp is interactive and user-generated. There are pre-chosen topics interspersed throughout the day to help start things off. These topics are things that every BarCamper can use (programming languages, social media, social networks). After that, it’s all up to you. Anyone and everyone who comes to BarCamp can come with a topic in hand, prepared to share it with their fellow Campers. When it’s time to begin, you get to vote on exactly you want to hear that day. The result is the most relevant, informative, and interesting conference possible for you, today. Said simply, BarCamp becomes exactly what you want it to be.

BarCamp will have rooms set aside for open discussion on the topics that matter to you most (i.e. the ones you choose). There will be panel discussions throughout the day on those subjects where two (or more) heads are better than one. Even the traditional presentations are more exciting when you get to pick them yourself.

It’s time for bloggers, techies, entrepreneurs, and geeks to unite! Join the conversation at BarCamp Memphis 2008!

Social Media Breakfast #7

October 6, 2008

It’s hard to believe, but the Social Media Breakfasts seem to keep getting better! This month we had our largest group yet meet at the Crescent Club in Midtown Memphis for what promised to be a great way to start the morning. There were plenty of familiar faces mixed in with a great group of Social Media newcomers.

LunaWeb President, Dave Barger, hosted the event and kept everything running smoothly, as well as answering questions on all thing Social from a crowd that eagerly supplied both answers and inquiries. After some initial discussion, long time Social Media Breakfast attendee, Bob Hazlett, gave a hilariously informative presentation on Social Media campaigns gone wrong entitled, “You Suck at Social Media.” He effectively walked us through the best of the best on down to the abysmally low in Social success (from Zappos shoes to Microsoft’s twitter presence).

As always though, the best of Social Media Breakfast happened before and after the official presentations. Staying true to the idea of being “social” there were plenty of opportunities for networking, catching up, meeting new connections, and sharing new Social Media information.

You can already RSVP for the next Social Media Breakfast on the MeetUp page. And be sure to check out photos from SMB #7 here! If you haven’t already been to one of the Social Media Breakfasts, talk to one of the people who have. We’ll see you at the next one!

The Memphis entrepreneurial community has been drawing some high-profile attention recently, fueled by several recent events put on by everyone with the LaunchMemphis group.

The first event to give Memphis some much-deserved national attention was the LaunchMemphis TechFuel night featuring Business Week writer, Yahoo! TechTicker host, and blogger, Sarah Lacy.  Sarah, being a Memphis native, was already familiar with the local business climate.  After interacting with a full host of entrepreneurs during the stop on her User Generated Book Tour, Sarah wrote an epic blog post about what Memphis is doing right.

The Geoff Livingston tweetup on the 22nd was the second event to spawn great press from a better source.  Geoff, author of Now is Gone and top ranked PR blog The Buzz Bin, met with a group of Memphis entrepreneurs and Social Media proponents at Quetzal cafe, where he got to know several members of the business community, and shared some great conversations everyone there.  Afterwards, The Buzz Bin interviewed LunaWeb President and LaunchMemphis co-founder, Dave Barger, about the future of entrepreneurial Memphis and Social Media.  You can see the post here.

If you missed Sarah and Geoff, there’s still more on the horizon in Social Media.  Upcoming on the calendar is the Social Media Breakfast on October 1.  As well as Barcamp Memphis on November 7-8

It’s an exciting time to be a Memphian!  Let’s keep up the good work and continue to make Memphis great.