Category Archives: Video

appLOUD and youWare connect online and physical worlds

How much of the online world do you want to merge with your physical world? Two startups at the NY Tech Meetup last December 2 aim to remove this friction.

appLOUD, a live stream of fan-generated live music videos, allows you to give a tip to starving musicians out there, according to founder Cecilia Pagkalinawan. You simply watch 30 seconds of live music videos from street performances to concert halls and it will make sure the tips reach these artists. For artists already in the stream, the “tips” can be categorized in various ways–for rent, school tuition, even charity donation.

The other startup demonstration, Thinkyou, could be a business card killer. Its YouWare is instant social networking if you have one of its wearables. For instance, you can connect on Linkedin with someone you just met by the flick of a QR-coded wristband.). And we all thought QR codes were dead.

How does it work? When someone scans youWare with the youPass app, you become instantly linked based on the social network accounts you want to use for connecting with someone.

How is it doing? It’s fairly new. Founder Mike Juliano is currently running a Kickstarter campaign where he is currently raising $50,000 for it.

Not exactly a newbie since it was founded in 2009, but wireWAX left the crowd in awe as it demonstrated its taggable video tool. It allows you to add tracking tags to people and objects on video. To showcase its technology, a demonstration showed how it could track every person coming into the theater. Yes, we saw this in Minority Report the movie and even another company that presented in this same theater months ago.

Personal investing has gone social as well with Openfolio. It’s up to you, though, if you want to share your investments with Warren Buffett, though. The app allows you to stay private and choose the portfolios you want to see.

Another presenter, Celery, is not for vegetarians only. It’s a buy-and-sell bitcoin site. Reportedly secure, it allows you to buy bitcoins using your bank account. They can put your purchased bitcoins in storage.

Other startups showed how their startups or products can make our lives easier or productive: Kinvolved can check your kids’ school attendance; Bespoke marries discovery and utility visually, and showed.me offers enterprise peer-to-peer learning among employees.

Tiggly, Dweet.io among standouts at NY Tech Meetup demo night

nytechmeetup114

By Dennis Clemente

How do you pack in 12 startup demos in two hours? Last November 3, the NY Tech Meetup did it again with Tiggly and Dweet.io among the standouts of the night at Skirball Theater at NYU.

Every parent sees their kids using digital devices more, which also means less physical playtime for them. Recently funded for $4 million, Tiggly has found a way to merge both physical play with the digital world in its tablet app. It has developed game apps and physical objects used in tandem with tablets to help educate kids using conductor silicon. The startup has clearly found a sweet spot between a toy and an app.

CEO Peter Semmelhack presented dweet.io, a Twitter for things. You dweet, say, a public swimming pool temperature or air quality in a city. It’s Twitter for machines, sensors, devices, robots and gadgets, enabling data to become easily accessible through a web-based RESTful API.

Built from day one for commercial and enterprise deployments, a dweet payload can reach up to 2,000 characters. It’s public by default but you can make dweets private by purchasing a lock which are then applied to thing names. Each locks costs $0.99.

It only holds a thing’s last 500 dweets for up to 24 hours, then it’s history. But you can build a connector to your data store of choice such as Dropbox, AWS and Tempo-DB.

Next presenter, Admitted.ly positioned itself like how online dating works. It is a free platform that helps high school students find their dream colleges and universities, connect with mentors, and get accepted.

A “graduate” of ER Accelerator, Admitted.ly works as an outreach for high school students and guidance counselors but in a fun, engaging way. It even has walkability directions among other useful guides when choosing a school.

Another presenter, BugLabs, is a software company that focuses on providing easy enterprise application development tools for the Internet of Things.

Keezy’s presentation was perhaps the first unspoken one in NY Tech Meetup’s decade-long history. The demo showed how the music software works using two if its music apps, Keezy and Keezy Drummer for iOS, easily that even kids can play around with them. You can record different sounds on Keezy but the Drummer is just one kit.

Not all presentations are crowd-pleasing but some marketing people listened intently on how Offerpop works to create marketing engagement platforms for today’s social and mobile consumers—and how it helps the best brands, retailers and agencies in the world connect, engage and convert consumers.

Launched last September 29, Parcel offers off-hours delivery service in New York (not including Queens) for only $5 (not heavier than 30 pounds, no higher or longer than 2 feet). You can select a one-hour delivery window.
Other presenters include Simple Machine, crafter of gaming experiences and stories like The Outcast as well as SquareSpace which now integrates Getty Images in its CMS platform for people to buy photos to use directly on their sites.

Waywire Networks talked about how its curating all the videos to make it easy for everyone to find the videos based on their interests. Each channel is authored and “highly niched.” It hosts content and is currently looking for curators
The Hacks of the Month were Calcash, an 8-bit online arithmetic battle game that makes learning and solving problems fun, accessible, and competitive; NewsFeel, which graphs the New York Times articles on any topic based on sentiment and lastly, Nodeflow, a just-in-time synchronous Javascript compiler that makes Node.js development easier.

With HBO in the news, NY Video meetup holds one of its best demo nights

Jesse Glasse
Jesse Glasse

By Dennis Clemente

The NY Video meetup had one of its best demo nights last October 16 with Steve Rosenbaum keeping things interesting with his usual side commentary on the latest in the video world. If you missed the news this week, HBO plans to bring its programming to Internet users via a Netflix-style streaming service.

“HBO versus Netflix? Is this good for us?” he asked. He thinks if you have no cable and you subscribe to both plus Hulu, you may end up paying the same amount you paid on cable. That’s certainly something to chew on as he announced the presenters of the night at AOL—SundaySky with SmartVideo, OCHO, Joey and Mediabreaker.

Max Stossel, along with Jerilyn Stone, dared the audience to imagine what YouTube would look if it were made today. It’s a social network that makes videos better in 8 seconds thus the name Ocho. Now available in the App Store and coming soon to Android, it has an interesting story.

The founders got funding from Mark Cuban when they emailed him on Cyber Dust. If you know how the app works (hint: the name says it all), that was a small window of opportunity for Ocho. Good thing Cuban got to it before their message disappeared.

Next presenter was Rachel Eisenhauer who talked about SmartVideo and how to help brands tell compelling stories that matter to the consumer.

The videos are personalized to the individual viewer. “It’s created for you, not by you,” she stressed. “Everything we create is from scratch.”

“We work with insurance companies and health companies using inputs from data analysts and the creative team,” she added.

DC Vito presented Mediabreaker next, showing how its product remixes YouTube videos—as a commentary and critiquing tool. He stressed how important it was to read the terms of service in this matter, because of the risks it is taking. It would own all the videos submitted, because it was willing to take the hit if the videos were challenged under Fair Use, a doctrine that permits limited use of copyrighted material without acquiring permission from the rights holders.

Last presenter was Jess Glasse. He talked about Joey (to be renamed to avoid similar name owned by a cable TV company) his professional grade panoramic 360-degree camera that allows capture, broadcast and live two-way conferencing at up to 4K resolution. It was on Kickstarter until Thursday night, surpassing its funding goal. It could just be the next camera sensation.

Editonthefly is crowd-pleaser at NY Tech Meetup

nytm photo-oct6

By Dennis Clemente

How can you tell if your startup is going to be the crowd-pleaser at the NY Tech Meetup? Every month, almost like clockwork, the last presenter gets the most applause. Of course, it doesn’t mean your startup is the best or the most promising among all the usual nine startup demonstrations.

Last October 6, Fly Labs presented last but came first on top of people’s minds at the after party, as people talked about its iPhone app Editonthefly, which lived up to its name as a fast way to edit videos, literally on the fly. It’s only available on the iPhone (not available on Android yet), because the team focused on “perfecting” its cool features.

The demo showed how it keeps cuts interesting. Each cut stimulates the viewer with a change of perspective or a change of scenery. You just tap to cut. For dissolves, you make the videos dreamy, nostalgic or magical just by swiping. By tapping two videos at once, you get a split screen that allows you to compare them. You can add music and voiceover, too.

The other presenters were Emozia, which is developing technology that enables machines and software to understand and respond to human emotion. It can reportedly tell which “zipcode is really feeling (something).”

Still want another dating app? There’s Glimpse. It matches you with another person via your Instagram photos. Yes, photos, not likes or dislikes but just photos.

“Have you used the product personally?” a woman asked, which prompted a crowd-pleaser of a response, “I use it all the time.”

KuaiBoard turns your keyboard into your clipboard as you type text quicker.

Mondevices introduced Monbaby for monitoring babies. It’s a wearable baby monitor in a smart button that tracks your child’s breathing, movement and sleep patterns on an iPhone/Android app.

This could actually work for everyone, not just babies.

Two other presenters were Partake, which claims to be the easiest way for couples to share expenses as well as PowerToFly, a social platform that connects women in tech to great jobs at high-growth companies.

The latter’s mission is to give women more jobs. The site has a staff of 22 remote locations in 7 countries for faster work cycle.

Shyp, for its part, claims it is the easiest way to send anything, anywhere. It can reportedly lower your shipping cost, because it has a machine that allows packaging items to the precise size of the item. It delivers around Manhattan up to 96th St and in Brooklyn. What? No Queens again.

That same night, IBM selected the Scaffold to compete against other startups.

The site aims to help you discover your leadership style. You take a short quiz and a virtual coach generates customized insights and suggestion how you can become a great leader. Its virtual coach will also send personalized advice, weekly tips and helpful resources to guide you.

A background in organizational psychology helped the team answer questions about the site’s legitimacy.

The hack of the month came from Yin Aphinyanaphongs who showed the results of alcohol intake using Twitter for a specific period of time. It’s not scientific but it clearly showed some interesting insights that can help in terms of monitoring policy changes and the behavioral effect of alcohol.

Yin’s study considered the text categorization, labeled tweets and learning algorithm. His next step is to prove his study over time periods, especially on weekends. Yin wrote about 400 lines of code using R and Python.

Who wants to challenge the YouTube business model?

By Dennis Clemente

How would you challenge the YouTube business model? Nine years since the video platform launched, no viable competitor has emerged, even if major media companies are reportedly working on plans to disrupt it. Can one really take on Google in the first place? If so, what could a new platform mean for content creators?

Last July 30, VideoInk, in partnership with BigSceen LittleScreen and Magnet Media, hosted a fireside chat with guest speakers Shira Lazar, co-founder and host of What’s Trending and Erika Nardini, chief marketing officer of AOL Advertising, to talk about YouTube and how to diversify the video ecosystem. Sahil Patel served as moderator.

“If you want to develop and nurture an audience, YouTube is the platform to do it,”
Nardini said. However, she also points out that it’s not a curated environment. If you look at iJustine (who has her own show on AOL), YouTube offers the same box that YouTube offers Conde Nast, my kids, and anyone here.”

AOL is known for pursuing personalities like iJustine, an internet celebrity and occasional TV host, as well as Nicole Richie, TV personality and fashion designer. “We love looking to YouTube to find talent for our programming. We love [iJustine’s] YouTube following. We discovered her there and we want her to grow it.

“But we believe there is an opportunity to program and distribute premium environments, and one thing YouTube doesn’t do is distribute. What we believe is having a really significant syndication platform that curates content,” Nardini said.

How does anyone grow a business on YouTube these days? For the panel, the glass half-full scenario is that YouTube allows zero barrier of entry; but the glass half-empty scenario points to the platform earning money, nor the person.

Asked if YouTube didn’t exist where can content be distributed more effectively? Lazar took on this question: “(Choose) either Netflix or Hulu. Amazon is harder, as they don’t curate as much as Netflix or Hulu.”

Two short videos were screened at the event. Set to start on August 11 on YouTube is “Master Date,” a comedic series about dating in New York City featuring Kate Oliva and Bryan Pauquette of Covert Bacon.

The other video was by Ryan Holloway of Forge Apollo. Showing on YouTube channel since May is his short-form series, “American History X-Men.” It’s about what happens in the future when Hollywood runs out of movie ideas.

The meetup was organized by Tiffany Asher.

How would you like some hip hop to go with your school lessons?


By Dennis Clemente

How would you like some hip hop to go with your linear equations or your history lesson? Last July 17, Flocabulary, one of four presenters at the NY Video meetup, brought the house down with its educational videos. The other presenters were Zentrick, Veenome and Kaltura.

“Kids love this,” CEO Alex Rappaport said. Apparently, so did the adults who cheered him on at the AOL offices.

Flocabulary is an online library of educational hip-hop songs and vies for grades K-12. “More than 20,000 schools use Flocabulary to engage and inspire students. Our team of artists and educators is not only committed to raising test scores, but also to fostering a love of learning in every child,” he said.

But how can he keep up? It turns out there are many rappers out there who like doing this for their community, according to him.

Started with two people, now Flocabulary has 35 staffers and freelancers.

Zentrick, the second presenter, is an interactive video platform that allows brands, marketers and publishers to build, deliver, manage and measure interactive videos.

How interactive can you get? You can add interactive apps to videos, publish it to the web and all linked social network, unify media buying and content publishing to any channel, network or partner. Plus, its real-time programmatic optimization helps personalize and optimize for media performance goals.

Ever thought of the “viewability” of your videos in terms of brand safety and content? Veenome, the next presenter, is taking on the challenge of analyzing determining this with its technology.

Based on its indexing video impressions, it found out that 83 percent of objectionale impressions occur on predominantly brand-safe publishers.

This is done automatically and efficiently, at huge scale so that millions of videos may be analyzed easily, according to Kevin Lenane, founder and CEO of Veenome.

“We use computers but there’s still a human element,” he said. “The trick is doing it quickly,” he stressed.

Powering any video experience to transform the way people learn work and entertained is how the last presenter, Kaltura, talked about its service, its open source online video platform, which provides both enterprise level commercial software and services.

Kaltura’s Vitaly Shter, director of product marketing, enterprise and Iddo Shai, director of Product Marketing promoted the company’s real-time placement of TV ads.

Sponsored Content videos offer more monetizing opportunities for publishers

At the NY Video Meetup at AOL
At the NY Video Meetup at AOL

By Dennis Clemente

If you’re a publisher, you know how Sponsored Content can help you monetize your site. For the uninitiated, Sponsored Content can be advertorials or story links that usually sits below your favorite news sites, although some are also known to pop up when you least expect it.

Last June 19 at the NY Video Meetup at AOL, Sharethrough and Taboola presented just how videos on Sponsored Content are gaining headway. They were two of four presenters, just the right number; it’s what every meetup should strive for.

Dave Ford of Sharethrough showed how Vine is popular on its in-feed ad exchange, for example. Sharethrough natively integrates all types of brand content (video, images, sponsored content and yes, vines) into the news feeds and content wells of relevant tier one publisher’s mobile and desktop sites.

In his demo, he showed how the integration of in-feed ad exchange to a publisher’s content is supposed to “respect the user experience” because if an item is promotional, it simply says that on the feed.

Why is Vine popular? Is the 6-second video loop the secret to Vine’s success? That was a question posed by host Steve Rosenbaum to the audience. Many in the industry say it’s fast and easy to upload videos. It has also gained huge following on Twitter. What this tells us is how sponsored content continues to improve to the advantage of publishers.

Ford assured us that “feeds are the most effective way for brands to distribute content.”

Taboola’s Andrew Milk noted 30 percent more activity for its videos. The content discovery platform reportedly serves 130 billion recommendations to over 350 unique visitors every month on publishing sites like USA Today, The Huffington Post, Time and The Weather Channel.

Publishers, marketers, and agencies leverage Taboola to retain users on their sites, monetize their traffic, and distribute their content to drive high-quality audiences.

“Our videos have given us an advantage,” he said, adding how publishers can screen ads that fit their identity. He also pointed out how related story links is working for them.

Another presenter relevant for publishers is Appfigures. Its suite of app-data tools are built to deliver insights to developers, publishers and enterprise. What does it do? It’s basically a reporting platform for mobile developers that automatically downloads and visualizes sales data, App Store reviews, hourly ranks and more.

Co-founder and CEO Ariel Michaeli designed around bringing clarity to complex data. If you’re into collaborative video production, Ryan Fitzgerald offers Celtx, which he described as Google Docs for video production teams. Supplemented by mobile and desktop apps, it provides a start-to-end ecosystem for video pre-production.

With Celtx, you can create scripts, storyboards, shot lists, scene breakdowns, budget schedules and more. “We provide an all-in-one solution,” Fitzgerald said.

For people who can’t wait for email and need to be able to move all the time, you can share documents with your entire team (maximum of 50) and work together on productions in real time.

Adways offers interactive CTA overlays in video platform

By Dennis Clemente

Last May 15, the NY Video Meetup played host to startup presenters with an international pedigree—Adways from France and Fluendo from Spain. Even the first presenter, Vyer Films, said the name Vyer in Norwegian means having a clear perspective of the future. But they’re Americans like the remaining two presenters—Digiriot and the husband-and-wife tandem of Feedbac. It’s not common to find a married couple presenting their own co-founded startup but we wish there were more of them.

The affable host Steven Rosenbaum opened the night talking about and showing a short clip from his film, 7 Years At Ground Zero. It was a long day for Rosenbaum who came from the 9/11 Memorial Museum launch early that morning. He was given access to document the building and curation of the museum. He kidded about needing an editor to trim over 700 hours of footage to 90 minutes. Email him if he is serious about it.

Vyer Films works like Mubi and Fandor. If you like watching independent and foreign films before they arrive in the U.S., they have films streaming on their site. It’s $20 a month for 2 films a month. “Vyer Films is a new film curation service, or the meaningful-experience-through-film business,” said K.C. McLeod, founder and CEO.

For the curation part, the movies are categorized based on your mood. They also have a curator’s statement for each film and in some cases, even interviews with filmmakers. The startup has four staff, including Meredith Wade, co-founder and CMO.

Can you create a cloud-based interactive video in less than five minutes? It really depends. If you have the video and you just need interactive overlays, it’s possible.

Adways offers videos, photos, shopping cart and social media tools to help you craft call-to-action messages from the videos.

The tool uses a drag-and-drop functionality in HTML 5 and offers interactive overlays such as videos, photos, frames, shopping cart and social media tools.

Adways’ Fabrice Jaeger said he worked at NBC before, went back to France and then came back to go full-time on his video creation tool with Zeb Holt, VP of Technology. It was hands down the night’s crowd-pleaser.

Feedbac was interesting from the perspective of how a married couple, sharing the same animating skills, collaborated on a collaboration tool—one that allows anyone to give real-time visual feedback on videos.

“With the tool, you can bring your team to the cloud to watch, make frame-by-frame notes, notate and assign tasks on your video projects,” said Dara King-Fequiere who came with hubby Chris Fequiere.

From Barcelona, Fluendo is a company that enables multimedia and video on a wide variety of devices and operating systems. It just launched a new product suite called OnePlay for corporate users and resellers/OEMs. Test how the subtitles work.

Last presenter was Jeff Koenig of Digiriot, which currently shows an original sci-fi video series but who wants to give more content creators out there better exposure and success for their programs via its platform.

The NY Video meetup changes venues every now and then. It was at Columbia University at one time, at the Made in NY Media Center in Dumbo, Brooklyn and at AOL near NYU. The meetup was co-hosted by Bianca Francis.