Nuggets from NY Tech Meetup – April 2010

Tuesday was a great night for all techies at NYTM, although not as packed as usual, it did not disappoint!  It was an information packed night.  Interestingly, developers seem to be using social data more and more to create apps, especially as FourSquare and Twitter offer the ability to capture so much data.  There were quite a few demos that used this data to build content for their apps.  So many great ideas!

Here are some of the nuggets:

Cabsense NYC – This iPhone app should come in handy for New Yorkers!  It will show on a map, based on your location, the best corners to stand on to catch a cab in Manhattan.  For the data geeks out there, and this is actually interesting, the developers got data from the NY Taxi Commission and studied 90 million taxi cab trips in order to figure out, depending on the time of day, the best places to get a cab.  They also showed a really cool video heat map of week of taxi activity on a map of Manhattan.

Whistle Box – Love, love, loved this demo!  Whistle Box have created the world’s first augmented kids reality game.  Kids can see themselves in cartoons and interact with characters.  It works through a motion capture system from a webcam.  Kids can interact in a 2D physics-based world and be part of games and stories.  The virtual play space allows two kids to play together virtually, so they could be in different locations and interact together.  Games get kids to move around, similar to Wii, but they can see their own image from the webcam inside the cartoon.   I can see this being huge!

Bantam Networks – Another great option for companies to manage communication internally.  Bantam has developed a social CRM workplace that is a competitor to Sales Force.  It allows employees to manage contacts and calendars, status updates, meetings, Twitter feeds.  LinkedIn feeds and Facebook info will be added soon.  This starts at $20 for single user. – This is a personalized newsfeed that filters information based on user activity and preferences.  It also finds information that it thinks you might like based on your profile and similarities you may have to other users.  It uses the same technology as Pandora, Netflix and Amazon.  They have a consumer app as well as platforms for developers.  For publishers that don’t already have this technology in place it could be a great opportunity to easily personalize content.  If you go to the website you can sign up for more info. Unfortunately it does not look like it is actually live yet.

NOAH – aka Networks Organisms and Habitats showed off their iPhone app.  Users can take a photo on their iPhone and the free app will identify animals and also send the info about where and when the animal was spotted to various organizations.  Lots of good uses for this app.

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