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Web Summit 2013

More than Just a Princess

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‘Girls- to do the dishes / Girls- to clean up my room’ vs. ‘Girls- to build the spaceship / Girls to code the new app’….hmmmm, seems like a bit of a no-brainer to us, especially as fathers of sharper than tacks daughters, who wouldn’t go ANYWHERE near the bedrooms of The Beastie Boys.

In case you missed it, there’s been some hoopla about the use of a Beastie Boys song from the 80’s called ‘Girls’ by the folks at Goldieblox– who are aiming to ‘disrupt the pink aisle’ by ‘building games for girls to inspire future engineers’. Now, what the Beasties claim is ‘copyright infringement’, we here at NXHQ see as the ultimate in reclaiming a word and bringing it home to its rightful owners- the girls!!

We first saw the famous vid the morning we happened to have a meeting with NCWIT (The National Centre for Women in Technology).  We had met them over in Dublin at Web Summit 2013 and wanted to have a chat about bringing their first Canadian startup on board. And guess what? Goldiblox is one of their Entrepreneurial Alliance Members- and NOW so is Nexed!

In the end, lawsuits were then threatened and withdrawn by both sides, and Goldiblox (perhaps showing their gentler and ultimately wiser nature) has now switched up the music that sent their video viral. It’s still great, but really such a shame that it had to come to this. Wouldn’t you think that the Beasties might want to get some good karma back for their misogynist ways back in the day? Or MAYBE, just maybe this was all a brilliant marketing scheme by the Goldiblox-ers- who certainly seem like they have the brains to stay one step ahead of the Boys.

IF you want to see it in all its original, pink-aisle disrupting glory,  go check out:

 http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2013/11/19/goldieblox_commercial_rewrites_the_beastie_boys_urges_young_girls_to_pursue.html

Hope that doesn’t get anyone in any more trouble…but sometimes a little disruption is exactly what the princess ordered :)

 

 

 

A Few of the ‘Crazy Ones’

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This time last week we were at the Paris airport, scraping together our last few Euros for REALLY expensive ham sandwiches and getting ready to roar back home. Good times in Dublin and at Web Summit, and it’s taken this long to comb through all the business cards and re-connect with the folks we met over there.

There were over 800 startups in the Alpha Village (or ‘Startup Alley’, as one investor put it). And while we couldn’t chat with all of them, we did make a point of meeting up with as many of our fellow ed-tech-ers as we could.

Today’s blog was meant to be a ‘Top 10’…but we couldn’t narrow it down- so here’s a ‘Top 17’ list for your reading and browsing pleasure. In no particular order, of course…

CLOUDPAGE http://cloudpage.co  create and publish a ‘stand alone’ webpage

FRUGOTON http://frugoton.com iPad games for toddlers

GRADQUIZ http://www.gradquiz.com helping connect university grads with top notch companies

THOUGHTBOX http://www.thoughtboxlearning.net  creators of ‘gameful learning’ apps

GLOBED http://globed.co  e-learning solutions and childrens’ literature online

CAMARA http://camara.org using technology to improve the education of children in disadvantaged communities worldwide

EDUONGO http://eduongo.com   allows educators to create and launch their own online academy or programme and share with colleagues and students

BOOKBOON http://bookboon.com  download free eBooks and textbooks

IQPOLLS https://iqpolls.com  live web-based audience response service

CHOREMONSTER https://www.choremonster.com  making chores fun by engaging and rewarding kids through a suite of web and mobile apps

TYROCYCLE http://www.tyrocircle.com  a social learning platform for students and professors in post secondary education

EDSPIRE http://www.edspire.co.uk  a beautiful, inspiring and award winning blog born out of the tragic loss of a child

APON http://www.apon.com   gives educators the ability to transform print materials into interactive media and repackage it as a native app, all without the aid of programmers

EXAMTIME https://www.examtime.com  changing the way students learn by providing free study tools for students and teachers

CODERDOJO http://coderdojo.com volunteer led, open source, global movement of free coding clubs for young people

RIFFSTATION http://www.riffstation.com learn guitar chords and solos from any mp3 by slowing down, isolating and looping the guitar track

In the next few posts we’ll be showcasing some of these great companies and discuss how we’d like to partner with them using ANSWERABLES! If you know of an Ed-tech startup we haven’t mentined here that is helping blaze the trail, feel free to comment below.

 

 

On the Road

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You’ve heard of dinner and a movie? How about dinner and a beta? The Nexed Team and Answerables landed with a badda-boom badda bing at East Side Mario’s  in the first of what we’re calling our ‘flash demo’ series.

After a little bit of fancy footwork getting ourselves online and plugged in, we rolled up our banners and got down to it! This first one was really meant to test out our ‘roadworthiness’, and a couple of bumps (they’re always in the road) aside, Answerables seems to be purring along nicely.

Even without any prior media shout outs, we had some folks drop by. Kiddos mostly, in search of something to do while their parents finished off their desserts. And as you all know, kiddos are our speciality! There were oohs and ahhs, especially with Answerable up on the big screen; the kids got a glimpse of our newly re-designed POD, and a chance to sit down behind our macs and take a test drive.

But if YOU want to have a peak, you’re going to have to wait till our next flash demo…won’t be long. And this time we’ll keep you all in the loop. Thinking somewhere caffeinated maybe…?

And of course, in case you hadn’t heard, this is all in full prep mode for Web Summit 2013  in Dublin’s fair city. We applied and were accepted into the Alpha programme, which helps startups get a booth without having to re-mortgage the house. So when it all goes down in Dublin in late October, Nexed and Answerables will be in there with the best of them! And not to toot our own horn, but we think they’re pretty lucky to have us;).

FYI, we’ll be seeking out some brave Ansibles and Pedagogs on THIS side of the Atlantic to help us out ‘live’ on the day we show our stuff. If you think you’re up to the challenge, drop us a line.

 Wonder if there’ll be pasta?

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