Dragonair’s Inflight Magazine Declares “Asia is Innovating”

SR0716_p1_FRONTCOVER

This is an interview I did with Dragonair’s inflight magazine called Silkroad — they don’t have a website so they were gracious enough to allow to reprint the article in full here. I sat down with writer Katie Scott for about an hour in April and this is the result of it with insight from friends and ecosystem supporters Simon Squibb and Bay McLaughlin — I’ve attached the actual spread below with Chinese translation:

This is the Asian Century. The region is changing faster than arguably anywhere at any time in history, and innovation is at the heart of this transformation. In our new monthly series, Innovation Asia, we’re exploring new ideas, technology and entrepreneurship across the continent, one city at a time. But what is the big picture? In our first instalment, we look at how the winds of innovation are ready to swing east.

Six years ago, six people met in a Hong Kong coffee shop. They were there to share ideas, exchange contacts and give each other support as they embarked on the uphill slog of making their startup businesses a success. ‘At this early stage, there was more enthusiasm and ideas than investors and proper business plans,’ says Casey Lau, one of the co-founders of the group, StartupsHK. ‘Some of those early birds fizzled but the ones with sound ideas are still around today.’

The potential, however, was clear and the StartupsHK gatherings soon gained traction. Now the group has more than 10,000 people in its network and can no longer find a coffee shop big enough for its meetups. This story has parallels across Asia.

[Read more…]

Hong Kong’s First Google Digicamp at ArtisTree

Digicamp1

ArtisTree hosted Hong Kong’s first ever Google DigiCamp on Wednesday.

If you’re having trouble visualizing this, think 20,000 square feet of sensory overload: larger than life 3D brand logos (YouTube, Maps, Google+ etc.), mounted TV screens with real-time product demonstrations, projections of interactive games on the walls and of course, a giant domed Android head in the corner.

Basically, it was the amusement park equivalent for Google fans where attendees gave new and existing Google tools a whirl. In the Android corner, the delicious mascot KitKat stood next to fans eagerly waiting to design their own Androidify character for customized tote bags. At the interactive games wall, attendees got to simulate the Google Maps experience by using their body to navigate through the streets of Hong Kong, while others tried out the skydiving emulator; both were created exclusively for DigiCamp.

Exhibits for Art, Copy & Code (a 60 second film build out of code, personalized based on the viewer’s location, the weather and time of day) and 500 Chrome Experiments (showcase of web experiments written by the creative coding community) were also a couple notables.

[Read more…]

Tipping Point Hong Kong Event Overview

tippingpoint_01

If you can get 300+ Hongkongers to take an entire day off work to attend a sell-out conference on innovation then I would hardly say entrepreneurship in this town is dead. On the contrary, it’s alive, kickin’, and poised for explosive growth.

The conference, dubbed Tipping Point Hong Kong and moderated by Prof. Gregg Li, is the product of Business and Professionals Federation of Hong Kong (BPF), where Li serves as Vice Chairman. The events’ aims are to promote innovation in Hong Kong, bridge gaps between industry and government, and encourage students to participate in the process of innovation. A dominating theme I’ve been hearing in the business community, and today was no exception, is that Hong Kong needs to diversify away from banking and real estate and invest more in innovation and entrepreneurship. This should be encouraging for those of us supporting or running startups.

[Read more…]