Tonight we held our twelfth DemoCamp in Edmonton. We changed up the venue this time but decided to stay on the University of Alberta campus, so instead of the familiar ETLC we found ourselves at the Telus Centre. To me the vibe in the room felt different, like there was less energy, and it actually seemed like there were less people because it was a bigger room. It’s amazing how the layout of the room can have such an impact.
We had four short demos tonight, from some of the winners of the Apps4Edmonton competition:
- Eugene showed us Statistics Edmonton, which lets you easily look at demographics and other information on a map.
- Ben showed us Alertzy, which can send you a text or email notification when it is time for garbage pickup where you live!
- Mitch showed us Diner Inspect, which lets you look at health inspects for restaurants in your neighbourhood.
- Chris showed us YEG Live, which aggregates music events in Edmonton and does e-ticketing as well.
We also had five regular demos:
- Chad Smith from Hybrid Forge kicked things off by demoing TRACpac for iPhone, an iPhone application that lets users search the combined catalogue of more than 150 libraries. He also demoed an iPad app that offers the same functionality but with a different interface. The apps looked great, and I love that they use a variety of 3rd party APIs to pull in data.
- Jas Panesar showed us an app he had built for clients to deal with managing warranties. We didn’t get to see too much of it, but it seemed to have some solid workflow behind it. And certainly as a customer, making my interactions with warranties better is a good thing.
- Next up was David Nedohin and Kieron Quigley from Statusfirm. They demoed Core Catalyst, a CMS tool targeted at government, enterprise, and other large organizations. It’s actually the platform that is powering the City of Edmonton’s election webcasts.
- Fourth tonight was Joel Adria and Yuri Delanghe, university students who built Bearbook which is a Facebook app that makes it easy for students to share their timetables with other students, and to find common breaks. Joel said they were inspired by Bearscat and currently have 3700 students using the app (half of which have uploaded their schedules).
- Last but not least was Trystan Kosmynka and Colin Humber. They showed TestFlight, a beta testing management platform for developers targeting the iOS platform. It fills a big gap that Apple developers face, and does it without iTunes, cables, or jailbreaking.
Overall, I’d say my favorite demo was probably Bearbook (though I also really liked the TRACpac app that Chad showed). I think a lot of other people in the room enjoyed Bearbook as well, feeling that Joel and Yuri brought some of the old-school-DemoCamp back. And I love that Joel was more than happy to respond to questions about new features with “we wanted to keep it simple.”
I think the most popular demo was without a doubt TestFlight. I’m not an iOS developer, but a lot of people in the room were, and they seemed to be salivating at the solution that Trystan and Colin showed. I also love that they tackled a real problem, and solved a major pain point. TestFlight isn’t just cool tech, it will actually have a really positive impact on the lives of iOS app developers and their testers.
We definitely had some issues tonight. Internet connectivity was a problem, due in part to us being on the U of A campus I think. We need to get that figured out. A lot of our demos tonight used iPhones or iPads, so we made use of the camera display. It worked well enough but the constant switching of video cables did get somewhat annoying.
The after-party tonight was awesome! The entire top floor of Original Joes was packed. I’m sure some people skipped or couldn’t make the demos and just came for beer, which is fine! It was a good time.
There were a few announcements tonight:
- The next BarCamp is tentatively scheduled for October 23.
- The next Launch Party is tentatively scheduled for November 17.
- There are a bunch of other tech events coming up! I’ve got them listed at ShareEdmonton.
Thanks to everyone who came out tonight. See you at DemoCampEdmonton13!