New Website Coming (Real) Soon

For years we have struggled with creating a site that helps people all over the world engage with Gangplank. Having multiple locations, each with a different set of initiatives, numerous events, and so many things happening in the Gangplank movement can be intimidating.

Instead of waiting to be perfect, we are going to Be Dangerous. This month you will see some major changes to our site. We will be launching a new, extremely simple, theme. We can figure out what is and is not working, and quickly iterate to improve the site for everyone.

Visit our github project to get involved and make the Gangplank experience better for everyone. Any and all skillsets are welcome.

Gangplank Domain Exchange Recap

On Wednesday, February 23rd, a few members of the Gangplank Community gathered together for the Inaugural Domain Exchange. The Domain Exchange was a loosely organized event setup as an opportunity for individuals to “exchange” ideas about domain names or clean out their URL library.

The importance of a quality domain is often overlooked by many online professionals. Owning a domain name is a chance to own a truly unique identity or online property, in addition to being wise investment strategies. Domain names are a powerful part of search optimizing a website, not to mention domains act as great vehicles of advertising and promotion.

The goal of the event, organized by Gangplank and local design firm Drawbackwards, was an attempt to connect people interested in buying or selling domains or developing out an idea with a domain. The gathering was also an attempt to express the importance of a quality domain name to ad agency professionals, brand managers and all creative people.

Bret Feddern, a developer and aspiring domainer, listed a few domains from his portfolio during the silent auction. He listed NerdBoy.org, LocationWars.com and SecretsofSocialMedia.com from his portfolio. “I’m a bit anti-social myself, but Secrets of Social Media would be a great title for an eBook where someone more social than myself could write about the ever-evolving world of Social Media,” Bret explained.

Eric Anderson also attended the event, and had several quality domains featured in the auction. In his portfolio are the domains FreeCarbonCredit.com, BillTheseHours.com, ScottsdaleTutor.com.

Nathan Sauser was also in attendance, and listed the domain help-links.com for anyone interested in a self help site or online tutorials site. A few of the other domains listed in the silent auction were: PhoenixForeclosure.org, AdultsWithDisabilities.org and BrainTea.com.

While the silent domain auction could not generate a noteworthy sale to attract local news headlines, it was successful in connecting like-minded people and generating ideas.

Never underestimate the importance of an effective domain name. If you are interested in any of the domains mentioned in this post, or listed below, please contact info@gangplankhq.com.

Engagement for Nonprofits

Gangplank was pleased to host the ‘Engagement for Nonprofits’ seminar as part of WordCamp Phoenix 2011. The event was sponsored by Cox Communications and Gannett Local.

Greg Ensell of Cox Communications spoke on social media sites and how best to utilize the various mediums, providing examples for the Phoenix community.

Kevin Spidel of Gannett Local followed with specific CRM strategies.

Thank you gentlemen for the valuable information and for sponsoring the event! You can view their slide decks below.

Intel AppUp Application Lab: MeeGo series

Thank you to Wendy Coneybeer for this submission.

On the evening of Thursday February 3rd, Gangplank had the honor of hosting one of the stops along the Intel AppUp Application Lab: MeeGo series world tour. The purpose of this event was to introduce the AppUp Center and Developer Program, and to educate the Phoenix-area developer community on the tools they can use to create applications for the company’s upcoming mobile phone and tablet PC operating system, aptly named MeeGo.

Intel AppUp Event Intel AppUp Application Lab: MeeGo series

Before the event, the main room was transformed from collaborative workspace to auditorium, trading the numerous tables and office chairs for two sets of large projectors and screens hanging from the rafters, and rows of white chairs to accommodate the 140+ attendees. San Tan Brewing Company also came in to cater the event, providing plenty of good eats and keeping our complimentary Intel beer mugs full.

Some of the key takeaways from Intel’s presentation:

  • AppUp a marketplace for applications to run on mobile devices that use Intel Atom or ARM processors
  • Apps can be developed in C+, Java, .NET, or Adobe Air
  • MeeGo is Intel’s new open source, Linux-based mobile operating system
  • Applications submitted to AppUp will be available to MeeGo users
  • Smartphones and tablet versions of MeeGo will have different user interfaces, but will use same API
  • MeeGo is on a 6 month development cycle, with the next release due in April

I had a chance to talk with Intel AppUp program representatives Rhonda Peters and Kelly Woods after the presentation. “We’re excited about the opportunity to bring education to the developers,” said Peters.

“We want to bring a sense of community with our events and give the developers the tools they need,” Woods added. “They control their own destiny and set their own prices with the AppUp store.”

At the end of the event, each attendee was presented with a Lenovo Ideapad S10-3T convertible netbook/tablet PC with MeeGo 1.1 installed, so they could experience the new mobile operating system for themselves, and get started developing right away.

Other AppUp MeeGo series events have been held in Dublin, Ireland and Paris, France, with the next stop in Barcelona, Spain on February 16th.

For more information on the Intel AppUp program and the MeeGo mobile operating system, check out AppDeveloper.Intel.com.

More reasons to mentor

The more the merrier – that’s our mentoring philosophy for 2011.

We started out with 2 mentors in September 2010, growing that to 8 by December. Already in 2011, we’re up to 17 mentors.

If you’ve been waiting to check out the program, now’s the time.

With the addition of more mentors (and a goal to triple the number by 2012), we’ve changed the structure to make it easier for potential mentorees to choose who they would like to see.

Mentors are now divided into areas of specialty, which currently include:

  • Early Stage
  • Product Development
  • Design & Marketing
  • Operations
  • Technology
  • Legal
  • Finances

Gangplank’s mentors range from successful entrepreneurs to investors and business executives, who enjoy the opportunity to give back to the Chandler community. Gangplank mentors dedicate 3 hours a month, in 45-minute sessions, to helping entrepreneurs succeed in their business ventures.

“A lot of people feel like mentoring services are unobtainable because of the cost involved,” said Chuck Reynolds, a Gangplank mentor who specializes in WordPress and SEO. “Free mentoring lowers the barriers to access, letting more good ideas see the light of day.”

Read about our knowledgeable mentors by visiting our mentoring page and clicking on any of the areas of specialty. Appointments can be booked by emailing the Director of Operations.

If you’d like to contribute to our community as a mentor, email info@gangplankhq.com with a little bit about your background and what areas you specialize in.

Weekly Roundup – November 15-21

This week at Gangplank:

Monday, November 15

Tuesday, November 16

Wednesday, November 17

  • (9:00-noon) Mentor Office Hours with Hamid Shojaee [RSVP here]
  • (noon) Brownbag – ‘Guitar History and Performance’
  • (6:00pm) Hacknight
  • (7:00pm) Street hockey

Thursday, November 18

  • (noon) Technical Brownbag – ‘Devise’

Friday, November 19

Saturday, November 20

Sunday, November 21

Weekly Roundup – November 8-14

This week at Gangplank:

Tuesday, November 9th

Wednesday, November 10th

  • (noon) Brownbag – ‘The Business of Burlesque’
  • (5:00-8:00pm) Chandler Start up Drinks
  • (6:00pm) Hacknight
  • (7:00pm) Street hockey

Thursday, November 11th

  • (noon) Technical Brownbag – ‘Functional Programming with Clojure’

Saturday, November 13th

Sunday, November 14th

Street Fighter Tournament Recap

They came to battle. They came to win. But only one claimed the ultimate victory as Gangplank Street Fighter Champion.

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The first-ever Street Fighter Tournament brought in more than a dozen enthusiasts to test their skills. The employees of Integrum and Forty sought to maintain their street credit – access to the game everyday demands participation. Gangplank coworkers and community members fought to bring the anchors down a notch.

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Battles were close and at times, painful.

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But there can only be one winner, and Integrum President Jade Meskill claimed that honor.

5122744348 c81f869f98 300x199 Street Fighter Tournament Recap

Thank you to all those that participated in the tournament and to Jeff Rivers for photographing the event. Feel free to stop in anytime and practice for the next tournament.