Tag - vancouver

Are you interested in coworking in the Fraser Valley?

You know coworking? You should …

  • Coworking is smart independent knowledge workers who work mostly solo or in small teams, but don’t want to be stuck in their home office all day every day
  • Coworking is remote team members of larger companies who don’t want to be remote from people & interactions & a place to go
  • Coworking is networking and creative interaction between people with different skill sets, maybe even in different industries, leading to different solutions
  • Coworking is a place to work but not a traditional office
  • Coworking is like the coffee shop, but you don’t have to buy a coffee or a muffin every hour – and it’s a bit quieter
  • Coworking is a space for small teams in larger companies who want to break off and do something innovative
  • Coworking is a place where growing companies can get a few spaces while they’re looking for other offices or premises
  • Coworking is the future

Well, we’re trying to set up a coworking space in Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada. Yeah, right here in the Fraser Valley. With the farms next door (not really) and Mount Baker in our window (well, maybe).

The “we” part is yours truly, John Koetsier, and Matt Farley, of Pendeavor, a web design firm. You should join. It’s about the community, not about us. It’s about the space and the place, and the interactions with others that can occur when you’re there.

Pretty soon, you’ll have a place to sign up. It’s coming … on a page much like this one:

Details and links coming!

TEDx Vancouver

Aaron Coret & Stephen SlenI had the great privilege of going to TEDx Vancouver this past weekend …

It was in UBC‘s Chan Centre, a great venue – although it’s hard to sit anywhere for 8 hours or so of lectures. But TED talks are generally awesome, and these did not disappoint.

(If you don’t know what TED is, stop everything, go here, and watch a few videos. Short form: Technology, Entertainment, Design.)

My favorite sessions:

  • Aaron Coret & Stephen Slen
    After Aaron broke his neck snowboarding, they invented an airbag for snowboarders that saves lives and was used in the 2010 Winter Olympics opening ceremonies (yeah, I was in those opening ceremonies). Very cool, very courageous, very inspiring.

  • Christopher Gaze
    Wow. If you love language, you have to love Christopher. He loves the bard, Shakespeare, and does an amazing job explaining, no, demonstrating why.

  • Dr. Kate Moran
    How about the internet in the ocean? She’s doing it … very cool.

  • Romeo Dallaire
    The Canadian leader of the UN force in Rwanda during the genocide, who had his hands tied by UN rules, was forced to basically watch the atrocities, and wrote a book about it later: Shake Hands with the Devil.

  • Jer Thorp
    Wow. Amazing data visualizations with the NY Times and other organizations.

  • Victor Lucas
    Victor was announced as talking about 3-D. Turns out he was introducing the 3D rules he wrote in a letter to his unborn daughter:

    • Don’t be a dick
    • Don’t hang around with dicks
    • Don’t dick around

All in all: a great day. A few of my shots:

Social & You: my presentation at SOHO Vancouver

Here’s the slide deck from my presentation today at SOHO Vancouver:

I talked about the evolution of data from the spoken words to the Facebook timeline, and how that impacts business and branding. There are also four simple steps for businesses to take when starting out in social media.

It was a ton of fun … there were a lot of great people there. Smart business people all, with many of them already doing more than just dabbling in social media for their companies and their brands.

Speaking at SOHO YVR

Looks like I’ll be speaking at SOHO Vancouver in about a month. The topic? Social media, of course …

I’m looking forward to it, but I had to create/update a new bio to be posted on the site and in the conference literature. At first I sent in this:

John Koetsier is senior manager, online media for Canpages, the Canadian
local search company. He’s been connecting people and ideas online for over
15 years.

But our senior marketing manager, Cathy Greer, felt that wasn’t substantial enough. So, back to the drawing board …

Here’s what I came up with on the second go-around:

John Koetsier has been creating simple solutions for communication and connection for over 16 years.

He’s been director of product development for Premier (a division of one the largest education companies in North America, School Specialty), COO of a software startup, and has built 3 learning management systems for over 40,000 schools in the US and Canada. He worked with Disney to build a custom PC environment just for kids, and helped create the user interface for Intel’s Classmate PC project.

He is currently Senior Manager, Online Media for Canpages, the Canadian local search company, where he manages social media, search, and apps.

John has been blogging since the mid ’90s when he built his own blog infrastructure from scratch, and currently tweets (to over 4K followers), shares, updates, checks in, and Google+’s with alarming frequency. He’s spoken about technology, learning, and connecting to clients to audiences in Europe, Asia, Africa, and North America.

He has a Bachelor’s degree in English from Simon Fraser University and a Masters in Educational Technology from the University of British Columbia, and is on the board of directors of DiverseCity.

Sounds good – I should hire this guy. Marketing, marketing, marketing 🙂

Every kid's dream: Aidan is a Canuck

We are all Canucks.

Last night, my son Aidan lived that in a very special way. He was selected to join the Vancouver Canucks for the pre-game skate and the national anthems for one of the biggest games in Canucks history: game 7 of the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs against the Chicago Blackhawks.

This is his story …

Getting ready to leave
We pack up Aidan’s gear and stick in the car and head out to downtown Vancouver:
Ready to go!

We arrive at Roger’s Arena in Vancouver
There's Roger's Arena, under the Skytrain

It’s a party in Vancouver, but we don’t like dark birds of prey

We chill for a bit at Blenz with a cup of hot chocolate
Chilling @ Blenz with a hot chocolate

And then Aidan gets his face painted at the CBC’s offices

We get a pic with Peter Puck at the CBC
With Peter Puck by the CBC

We go in to the Canuck’s offices – gate 16
Going in Gate 16 ...

Aidan chills by playing some hockey at gate 16 and hits me with a “puck”

In the hall of heroes
Ready for the game, waiting in the Canuck's offices

We go down to ice level at Rogers Arena – it’s the calm before the storm
The calm before the storm

Aidan makes a new friend – a son of one of the Canucks’ coaches:

The Canucks come out for the pre-game skate – Burrows flips a puck over the glass for Aidan
Burrows digs it out

The pre-game action heats up:

Lu makes some sick saves:

Aidan is all eyes
Aidan watching ice heroes

Here’s the puck that Alexandre Burrows flicked over the glass to Aidan
Burrows shot me a puck!

Time to get suited up for the pre-game skate and national anthem
Getting dressed

Backstage at Rogers Arena – Aidan gets final instructions

We get a pic taken by the Canucks’ logo
Aidan and me by the Canuck's dressing room

Aidan skates out with Lu and the rest of the Vancouver Canucks

Aidan with the starting line-up for the national anthems

The whole crowd joins in singing the Canadian national anthem

Afterwards, Aidan changes out of his hockey gear and we head to our seats
In our seats after changing ...

The crowd goes nuts with our Roger Neilson towels
Canucks fans celebrate

The game is unbelievably awesome – one of the best in Canucks’ history

We check out the merch during the second intermission
Checking the shwag ...

Canpages (my company) shows on the scoreboard at center ice
Canpages on the scoreboard!

The Canucks win in overtime and Rogers Arena ERUPTS

The shake of shame for the Blackhawks, led by Jonathan Toews
The shake of shame (for the Hawks!)

A friendly fellow fan takes a shot of the historic game 7 overtime winning moment
A celebratory pic after the Canucks win

The celebration continues outdoors

Some random guy puts Aidan on his shoulders as we walk down West Georgia
The victory parade outside Roger's Arena

5 minutes after getting in the car … one tired Canuck
One tired Canuck

. . .
. . .

We had a wonderful time. Thanks Canucks for a great opportunity and a great game! Thanks Vancouver for such a fun and exciting and safe celebration after the game!

Here’s to the next round: Nashville here we come.

Running a major Canucks contest

This is too good not to promo here. At Canpages, we’re running a major contest with the Vancouver Canucks right now.

The contest is the Ultimate Canucks Night Out … and it’s pretty ultimate. Check out what we’re giving away:

  • 2 Canucks tickets to the Flyers game on December 28
  • Dinner for 2 at a nice downtown Vancouver restaurant
  • 2 jerseys from the Vancouver Canucks team store
  • A night at a local hotel

Not too shabby – all in all that’s a very significant prize pack … and the ultimate night out for a Canucks fan. By that time, they should even be out of their current slump!

Check out the contest at Canucks.com for all the details, including how to enter.

Innovation & collaboration panel at VX2010: audio now available

During the Olympics here in Vancouver, the Digital Media and Wireless Association of BC (DigiBC) hosted VX2010 … the “Vancouver eXperience” … V for convergence; X for intersection.” They brought in many of the entrepreneurs and business leaders who were attending the Olympics and hosted mixers, conversations, and showcases.

I was fortunately enough to be asked to sit on the Innovation and Collaboration panel, held at Robson Square on February 25th (the day before my birthday, actually). We had a great conversation: Olivier Vincent, the CEO of Canpages, Par Singh, the president of Intellectual Ventures Canada were also on the panel, and the moderator was Dean Prelazzi from DigiBC.

The audio is now available – all 39 minutes and 43 seconds of it – on the VX Conversations blog.

I arrived early to take in the previous panel, and was pleasantly surprised to find Robert Scoble on-stage. We briefly chatted about dark fibre and Google and other geeky goodies, and then I was whisked away to prep.

Yeah, that's Bob

That night there was a reception at the Vancouver Art Gallery. The event was just perfect: we watched the Robson Square Olympic fireworks show, met dozens of smart creative people, and at cake:

The VX2010 cake and Michael Bidu, president of DigiBC

Opening Ceremonies cast: cream of the crop?

I’m in the Vancouver 2010 Olympics opening ceremonies (actually, the closing ceremonies too) with probably thousands of other performers. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience: the chance to be part of an Olympic games.

I know only about a hundred of the performers: those in my immediate cast group. But as we’ve gotten to know each other over the almost a year of meeting, practicing, and preparing, I’m more and more amazed at the talent and intelligence in the group.

A young guy behind me is a pediatrician specializing in childhood skin diseases. A woman in a parallel section is an educator, company founder, consultant, and speaker. A big bald guy a few rows down is a serial entrepreneur. The guy two people in front of me is a young architect. Many of the participants are students at UBC or SFU. Others are young professionals. And it goes on and on …

Last night we had a dress rehearsal with 30,000 people in attendance (including my wife Teresa and our 3 kids). Since we were called in early and needed to be there most of the day, I took my laptop along and worked for a few hours. The number of people who came up, chatted, dropped business cards or connected in other ways was amazing.

I applied to be in the Olympics ceremonies for a chance to participate in a major local event with global implications. (It’s also been great fun and great exercise!) I never dreamed it’d be great networking and relationship-building as well.

Tomorrow we do a second dress rehearsal in front of 45,000 people, and Friday we go live to the world, with 70,000 people in attendance live and perhaps a billion or more tuning in on TV and online.

It’s a great privilege to do this, and an even greater privilege to do it with such wonderful companions.

Welcome to Vancouver 2010

As a longtime resident of the greater Vancouver area, and a participant in both the Olympic opening and closing ceremonies, I’m getting excited about the Olympics. They’re just around the corner, and everyone is frantically getting the last few things ready, in place, and perfect for the storm that is about to erupt.

This is an amazing introduction to Vancouver:


People I'm meeting at WordCamp Whistler

It’s 9:43 on Saturday morning and I’m at WordCamp Whistler right now. Tons of cool people here, and I want to be able to remember and connect with them, so here goes:

I had to cut this post short … I got very sick partly through the day and had to leave WCW09 just after noon. That was a real disappointment, as I had been enjoying the day immensely, but hey … what can you do?

I had to drive home from Whistler (3 hours) and stopped twice for not-quite-rest breaks. Not fun at all!

If there’s anyone else who was there and wants to be on this list, just add a comment and I’ll add you to the body of the post.

4 straight losses for the Vancouver Canucks

It’s Friday night and I’m surfing around while listening to the Canucks-Wild game on the Team 1040. The Canucks are just about to lose their fourth in a row and doubt is growing in Vancouver that they’ll make the playoffs.

I have to say it’s very, very unrewarding to be a Vancouver fan – it’s almost enough to put someone off of hockey.

The problems?

  1. Can’t score
  2. Can’t keep the puck out of their own net
  3. Not tough enough
  4. Not big enough
  5. Not enough heart

It has not been pretty lately.

. . .
. . .

BTW, I’ve joined a 3-on -3 league at the Abbotsford Training Rink, a half-size rink. I haven’t had this much fun playing hockey for years … it’s all offence, offence, offence.

Photo used in Schmap Vancouver

Just got this email letting me know this photo of mine with a CC license is being used in a map/guide to Vancouver. Cool!

Hi John,I am delighted to let you know that one of your photos witha Creative Commons license has been selected for inclusionin the newly released third edition of our Schmap VancouverGuide:Science WorldIf you like the guide and have a website, blog or personalpage, then please also check out our schmapplets -customizable widgetized versions of our Schmap VancouverGuide, complete with your published photo:http://www.schmap.com/schmapplets/p=18955080N00/c=SE28031505Please enjoy the guide!Best regards,Luke Ritchie,Managing Editor, Schmap Guides