Edmonton’s 24th DemoCamp took place tonight at the Telus Centre on the University of Alberta campus. DemoCamp is “an event that brings together developers, creatives, entrepreneurs and investors to share what they’ve been working on and to find others in the community interested in similar topics.” You can read my recap of our last DemoCamp here. There was a pretty good turnout tonight, and lots of new faces in the crowd.
We had seven demos tonight, three of which were projects created at the recent 24 hour Computer Engineering Club Hackathon. In order of appearance:
- Gregg and Stephen showed us Industry Mailout‘s new email editor. The existing editor hasn’t really been changed since 2004, so a fresh approach was long overdue. The new editor looks very slick, and in addition to being easier to use with a live preview, it’s more advanced too. Users can easily include tweets and other elements in their templates. It also supports Liquid.
- Ross and Andrew were up next to show us their project from the hackathon called Stall. It’s a mobile app that lets you play mini games simply by scanning a QR code that has been placed somewhere. So imagine getting into an elevator, scanning the QR code, and playing a quick game. They also implemented a high score feature, so you could try to top the leaderboard in that elevator. Cool stuff!
- Our third demo was from Michael who showed us Renturly. It’s an app that helps to match buyers and sellers in off-market, NPN (non-performing note), and REO (real estate owned) real estate. I must admit I don’t understand the business, but I gathered that this isn’t a tool you’ll use to buy your next house. It’s for people looking to buy and sell apartment buildings, hotels, and golf courses. I’m not really sure where the name comes in or why the logo is a bird, but it sounds like Renturly already has a number of paying customers.
- Next up was Indragie and Ali who showed us their Smartwatch Light Bulb Controller, which took first place at the hackathon. Their solution enabled a Pebble smartwatch to control the color and state of a wifi-connected lightbulb (they used LIFX). It was neat to see such a visual demo that just worked! Currently it requires a server and a phone, and it requires everything to be on the same wifi network, but in theory they could make it run from the cloud.
- Our fifth demo was from Myst.io. Logan and his team showed off the cross-platform API using Visual Studio! Myst makes it easy for developers to add features to their games like cloud saving, multiplayer, and achievements. It sounds like their API is fairly complete, though they are still working on the deployment and management.
- Sixth was Ranek who showed us his hackathon project called URSA. As he himself admitted, it solves a problem that students try to solve every couple of years – a better way to search and select from the University of Alberta’s course catalogue. His solution did look pretty slick, and there are lots of potential improvements he could make. Interestingly it doesn’t simply scrape data, but actually gets the bulk of it from an LDAP server the university makes available. Progress!
- The final demo of the evening was from Kris, Damien, and their team, who showed us GameSys. They work in the online gaming (as in casino) space, and showed us some nifty tech that can help to detect fraud, collusion, and other “abhorrent” behavior in online poker. We basically saw a Virgin-branded poker game being played, followed by a peek at the admin interface they would use on the backend to detect foul play.
Here are some video highlights from the event:
All of tonight’s demos were relatively quick – I don’t think anyone used their full seven minutes actually! I am really happy to see what Industry Mailout is up to as their service is used by so many local organizations (I feel like I interact with it daily due to all the email newsletters I get). I loved seeing all of the cool projects that students were able to create in just 24 hours, it’s really impressive. Even if their solutions don’t have a commercial future, it’s great to see such creativity.
Great job to all the demoers!
Here are the upcoming events and other announcements that were highlighted at DemoCamp:
- Startup Edmonton is hosting an open house each Friday afternoon. It’s a great opportunity to check out the space and to find out what it is like to be a member.
- The next Go Meetup is on Monday night. There are also meetups for Ruby, Python, and many other technologies so check them out! One of the newest is an AWS Meetup, the first meeting of which will be during lunch on March 20.
- There’s an interesting lunch event coming up next Wednesday called Lunchalytics. Taking place at Startup Edmonton, the event’s theme is Predictive Analytics in the Public Sector.
- TEDxEdmonton is coming back this summer with the theme of “uncertainty”. They’ve recently changed the date to June 14 to watch for future details in the weeks ahead.
Keep an eye on the Startup Edmonton Meetup group for more upcoming tech events.
See you at DemoCamp Edmonton 25!