May 15, 2013: This morning I had the pleasure of speaking at the UT Club to the Metropolitan Breakfast Club, a diverse weekly networking group with maybe 80+ people on hand on this particular day. Everyone in attendance introduced herself or himself with a very brief elevator pitch, and they were all crisp and upbeat. The members had even memorized some of their colleagues’ pitches and occasionally provided the punch lines in unison. I was impressed. There were several tech entrepreneurs in the crowd, but only one from the usual tech startup regulars here in Austin.
Those of you who read my post on President Obama’s visit to Austin last week know that I focused on the importance of that trip in terms of creating in the broader community a better awareness of the tech sector and its impetus toward educating and training a workforce that matches the long-term needs of that sector. One of the responses to that post was the following email from Michael Clifford (photo above), for twelve years the CIO of Whole Foods until last September. I thought it well worth passing along.
May 10, 2013: Congratulations to Josh Baer and the partners, mentors, and numerous co-workers at Austin’s Capital Factory for graciously hosting President Obama yesterday on the first of his economic issues day trips. The President and the United States CTO Todd Park saw presentations by some of our finest local ventures, were introduced to a group of angel investors, and interacted with personnel from the many startups who operate from the Capital Factory. He was even invited to apply to Capital Factory when he needs a job in 2017.
There was plenty of buzz in Austin yesterday as we topped HuffPo’s list of “terribly overrated destinations.” Elsewhere in the Southern US, Asheville, NC, was #9, right below Berlin. Personally with respect to destinations, I’m looking forward eventually to the full opening of Cuba where all us baby boomers will be able to drive the cars of our youth.
March 3, 2013: Allow me please to address this edition of TechDrawl primarily to my readers from Atlanta and other areas distant from Austin. I hope many of you are making your way here as I write this.
As you who follow my Tweets know, I've spent a few days in Atlanta surrounding the semi-annual Georgia Tech Research Corporation (GTRC) board meeting. GTRC administers all the contracts and licensing with respect to research conducted by both resident faculty and by the mighty Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) with its 1000+ full-time researchers. There is considerable cooperation among the teaching faculty and the researchers, and with other universities, on many projects.
Formula 1 has made one previous stop in Texas – June, 1984 in Dallas on a temporary street circuit around the Texas State Fair grounds. The Wikipedia photo above shows Ayrton Senna chasing Nelson Piquet in a race ultimately won by Keke Rosberg in 100° temperatures on a less than pristine track surface. Now we get a chance to welcome F1 back to our state after what Forbes calls a “Sordid Saga” in a recent issue. I’m a bit off topic today with this racing discussion, but I’d say Circuit of the Americas (