Tuesday, October 30, 2012

George Bell’s Take on Boston’s Innovation Scene

George Bell really enjoys mentoring young entrepreneurs and teaching them to articulate the value of their budding businesses. As the current President and CEO of JumpTap, former Managing Director of General Catalyst Venture Partners, and one of the Co-chairs for this year’s unConference, George has a wealth of experience to share. He comes to the unConference because he enjoys hearing about fresh new ideas – your fresh new ideas – so come prepared to share them with George. We guarantee he’ll have something to teach you in return.

Below you’ll find his thoughts on entrepreneurship and innovation in Boston, with an important key takeaway: if you’re given 15 minutes to describe your brilliant idea, be able to do it in five.

What makes Boston an innovation hub?
The presence of so many universities sets us apart. We have some of the best universities and programs in the country for engineering, technology, and entrepreneurship. And young people coming out universities don’t find themselves bound by conventional thinking.

Are there any elements we’re lacking that would make our ecosystem thrive?
We need to up the ante on risk and increase the risk profile of startups in Boston. Our entrepreneurs need to think more boldly; we need more “change the world” ideas, and we need more high quality entrepreneurs. Once we have the ‘change the world’ ideas here, we need to cultivate every reason in the world for that entrepreneur or CEO to believe they can build a great business here.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

October 19th Cloud Summit: Moving From Theory to Practice

Accelerating your Business with the Cloud

Approximately 250 people turned out for MassTLC’s annual cloud summit focusing on accelerating your business with the cloud. Scott Davis, CTO of end user computing services at VMWare, kicked off the morning sharing their vision and perspective of the Cloud.  He noted that as the cloud era is evolving, it is all about speed.  For a company such as Wal-mart, they can continue to accelerate their business because the real-time data they utilize to adjust to store needs and demands provides them the competitive advantage to stay ahead of the competition.  It is the speed of change that is disruptive. Scott’s presentation can be found here

Next Michael Skok from North Bridge Venture partners took the stage to share the results of the 2012 Future of Cloud Computing survey.  Nearly 800 people responded to the survey and identified the top three cloud drivers as scalability, agility and cost. Cloud provides the ability to separate the non-core activities from your core competencies, outsourcing if necessary.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Katie Rae, Innovation 2012 Co-Chair: What Makes Boston Thrive and Why She Loves the unConference

It’s likely that every single person working in innovation in the greater Boston area has heard of Katie Rae. As Managing Director of TechStars and of Project 11 Ventures, and as Co-Founder and Chairperson of Boston StartUp School, Katie unquestionably has her pulse on innovation in Boston. She’s also incredibly thoughtful and approachable, which is one of the reasons we asked her to be a MassTLC Innovation unConference co-chair. We sat down with Katie to get her expert take on what makes Boston thrive and how entrepreneurs can turn this year’s unConference into an unforgettable success.

Katie, what makes Boston an innovation hub?
Boston is an extremely lucky place because of three main elements: incredible universities with world-renowned research institutions, a long history of groundbreaking startups and deep knowledge of how to fund and support them. These three elements have created a massive pool of people who understand how to build large high-growth businesses. We also have an incredible mix of industries where we grow startups to big companies. From financial services to robotics, from clean tech to biotech and big data, these varying industries make Boston unique. We have an exciting mix of companies and spaces of innovation here.

How is innovation evolving in Boston and where is it heading next?
Boston is on a roll. The number of exciting startups coming from all different pockets of innovation here is staggering. We also are seeing a trend of lean startups expanding outside of just software. The lean startup principles are being applied to different industries.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Inside the Four Walls of a Medical Center's IT Systems

Our healthcare community met at Wilmer Hale in Waltham to listen to Dr. George Brenckle, CIO at UMASS Memorial Medical Center, discuss the complete overhaul of the medical center's IT systems. It was a massive undertaking and quoting Dr. Brenckle "that was really fun and I never want to do it again"!   UMASS Memorial, located in central Massachusetts, is a 7 hospital system employing 13,500 people, 70,000 in-patient visits and 1.6M out-patient visits per year.  The presentation discusses the shift from a Meditech-centric environment to a distributed Sorian environment.  Details on what it took, both from a technology shift as well as a cultural shift, to enable the care team to deliver better care are available here in his presentation. 

I also wanted to bring your attention to our next program scheduled for November 6th.  The program is focused on integrating people, processes and technology to address chronic care – in this case, diabetes.  We have a Type 1 diabetic patient that will present his own data and the challenges he encounters, and a team of panelists that will discuss what they need to do to understand and conquer the problems. 

Thank you to Dr. Brenckle for this time, Wilmer Hale for hosting the event and cluster sponsors IBM and Partners Healthcare.

We hope to see you soon and as always, do not hesitate to contact me at christine@masstlc.org if you would like to chat further about how to get more involved with MassTLC.