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A GridAKL take on TechWeek'17

Tech Week is almost here and there is SO much happening across the country!
To make things as easy as possible for you, here is a summary of ALL the events taking place within this very GridAKL building. Don’t miss anything you’ll regret later! All events you need to register for, through the link provided....

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Got a winning startup? Time to enter BNZ Startup Alley!

It is coming to the end of the year which means a good portion of you will be scrambling to get your Webstock tickets together for next February. But while you may be super excited about the lineup of speakers like Stefan Sagmeister and Genevieve Bell but if you are a startup you might also be excited about BNZ Startup Alley, a startup comp that takes place as part of Webstock. For the uninitiated, the competition allows startups to pitch for their chance to win cash, legal advice and a return trip for 2 to the states! We cornered Webstock Co-founder Mike Brown to talk startup, BNZ Startup Alley and why you should enter. 

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Accelerating work: we talk Launchpad Work with Akina

2016 may well be the year of the startup programme here in New Zealand. With new incubators and accelerator programmes announced, familiar faces taking on new locations and specialities covering everything from fintech to youth. There seems to be a programme to fit every need - including now thanks to GridAKL Graduates Akina - employment. 

The social enterprise foundation recently announced a new accelerator, aimed to help social enterprises creating employment in Auckland. But Launchpad Work is not just focussed on employment, they are focussing down to try and find employment for individuals facing the greatest barriers to work. This ambitious programme is the first of its kind in New Zealand and supported by the Ministry of Social Development and SKYCITY Auckland Community Trust.

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The wrong kind of innovation? Big I little i

Innovation, like Beyonce and chocolate cake, is one of those things everyone wants a slice of. We have spoken about it before - innovation is oft mentioned, lauded and praised but perhaps less diligently actioned in our organisations. That is why when the invite for the launch of Big I little i appeared in my inbox I was more than a little intrigued. While every day we see people spinning up new innovative approaches, ideas or iterations at a startup level - The Big I little i report is all about tackling the wicked problems of innovation in large New Zealand organisations. The learnings within the piece have been informed by interviewing 44 CEO’s of New Zealand’s biggest companies and most successful startups.

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Event Watch: Hardware Meetup Auckland

A familiar face in the NZ tech and innovation community, you may recognise Elyse Wyatt from Lightning Lab Manufacturing, or her constant presence at tech, innovation and startup events in Auckland and Tauranga. Recently, fusing her passion for people and love of hardware Elyse has founded the Hardware Meetup - Auckland. In the midst of prepping for their first event we managed to get a moment to talk to Elyse about what exactly a hardware meetup is, why it matters, and why you should be heading along. 

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GridAKL Resident Watch: boardPro

boardPro has been with the GridAKL family since our early days in the Polperro building. We cornered co-founder and C.E.O Brett Herkt to ask about their journey, startup tips, insights and the things they really wished someone had told them before they started on their startup journey.

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Friday Five: The antidote to startup stress?

If you feel the grind of work getting you down or the pace of startup life to quick this week, or need a bit of Friday afternoon chill-time. This week's Friday Five is for you, covering everything from work-life balance for startup founders through to the art of quitting, apps for meditating and a battle to focus on  making something you love.

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ThisData graduate GridAKL: Growth, pivots and beyond

Seeing a long standing resident graduate out of GridAKL is always one of those bittersweet moments! You feel hugely proud of everything they have achieved, but at the same time know you are going to miss them. We talked to recent GridAKL grads ThisData who have been part of our family for a while. Initially joining us as a resident in our old Polperro site, they recently made the leap to going it alone.

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Friday Five: All things VR

Because who is working on a Friday really? If you are going to be wasting time on the internet, we need to make sure you are at least filling your brain with goodness. This week we tackle the topic of VR, with links covering everything from the AR/VR Garage in Auckland, right down to the playing with food to make music, the first 360 degree ballet, and a little something from NASA....

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What is exponential technology? Why should I care?

We live in an ever changing world. 

This statement is the sort of 'white sliced bread' of statements. Ever present, truthful but all-together too boring to unpack at any level. Especially when you are living in the midst of such change. I mean why ponder the fact that your fridge can connect to the internet when you are busy bug fixing it. Amirite?

For a while, talk of innovation has been one of technological advances we can contextualise in our every-day existence. Computers are faster, so now I have gruntier graphics in my game, more fluid animation in my fav pixar film, and a phone which allows me to control my world - from dimming my lights through to ordering cookies, or a car to pick me up. Things have ticked along, and we have bumbled along with it. But what happens if the technology increases beyond our ability to contextualise it, or for-see its impacts?  

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What is the future of business?

Like many things in life, the answer to the question relies on context. For some like my tradesman father “the future of business is now”, for the Elon Musk’s of the world it might be taking place on Mars. So a panel on the future of business at what is typically perceived as a design conference definitely piqued my interest.

From a variety of backgrounds, including old school business success, new school business success, diversity and design - the panel of Vaughan Rowsell, Cecelia Herbert, Peter Biggs and Dean Poole all grappled with the same question. What will the future of business look like? The response? One of exponentials, humanity, creativity, diversity and questioning. But perhaps Peter Biggs had it in one “It’s hard talking about the future of business, because none of us know what the future is?”.

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The journey to Series A: a simple tale of tips, truth-bombs and tenacity with Tim Norton

It takes a lot to get people out of bed early to traipse into the city on a rainy day. But hearing from Tim Norton is a good a reason as any. If you are not familiar with the name, you are more than likely aufait with the story - the kiwi born company 90 Seconds, now a global high growth business taking an 11 million dollar Series A care of Sequoia India. The last year has been huge for 90 Seconds, involving big growth and even bigger goals, and at the helm of that story every step of the way was 90 Seconds Founder and leader Tim...

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FIVE questions: we chat Singapore, investment, and startup support with Carl Thompson

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FIVE questions: we chat Singapore, investment, and startup support with Carl Thompson

In the lead up to the Startup Grind Auckland we managed to corner the next speaker, a man by the name of Carl Thompson to answer 5 questions we have been pondering. If the name is not familiar you may know the business that Carl co-founded Trade Gecko. Carl and the other founders moved to Singapore to grow their business in premier technology accelerator, JFDI. Trade Gecko raised over $8million USD with a global customer base in over 100 countries...

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TECH WEEK AT GRIDAKL

A week all about celebrating, showcasing and inspiring the local tech, innovation and design community? What is not to love?! Tech week is here from the 14th to the 22nd of May and GridAKL will be the HQ with great events, chances to network and a spot to charge up yourself (with a coffee) and your computer! For the low down on what the week entails keep on reading…. 

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Meetups, discussions and pitch events: 5 tips for speaking success

As if starting a business or crafting an idea through to product stage is not hard enough, you have to talk about it too? Few founders, technologists, inventors - or frankly people with ideas worth sharing, will go through their career without having to get up in front of people and explain the ins and outs of a new product, their origin story or give their opinion on what is next in innovation. A good job at speaking can spread that idea of yours far more than a night of cold calling can do, so how do you make the most of it?

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FRIDAY FIVE - CURIOSITY

Curiosity about a structure can lead you to trigger a light show but curiosity can also lead in some decidedly more kooky adventures. We tackle all that is curious in this weeks Friday Five. 

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