Proto : Day 2 , A summary
Posted by tggokul on July 22, 2007
Whew, what a day. It was so refreshing to see so many people trying to innovate ( and not exactly just in web 2.0 and mobile) and it kind of inspires you and make you hopeful that an entrepreneurial India is really not too far away.
Now for the summaries of these companies presentation. This time around I don’t plan to review each of the companies, since some of them were completely outside the realm of my interest and expertise.
The company that got my attention in the Development Plaform group was BriteSoft Solutions. They are based out of Malaysia and they talked about their rapid Application development tool that cuts doen development time by a huge margin and also enables anybody to develop applications. Now to be fair to them, I am a cynic when it comes to Rapid Application environment since I have seen a whole lot of these who over-sell but under-achieve. It is likely that BriteSoft might be different, but then I got to see it to believe it. I honestly feel Rapid Application development software gets you only so much. Would be more than happy to be proved wrong. It wouldn’t hurt if I can be helped to reduce development work :)
Enterprise segment in Proto had some few interesting companies like TISS,AuthMe, Multimedia Display Technologies. Both TISS and Authme had a security play in their own ways. TISS provides a USB based security cover for the transactions carried out on your laptop whereas Authme provides a session based security solution. For me, the latter is a huge challenge because most of these solutions fail when it comes to scalability and heavy load. And I probably might be wrong on this one. But Authme has a very close resemblance to openID. Did anybody else sense that?
Multimedia Display Technologies deal with RFIDs and they have patented technology that reduces the cost of the solution by nearly one hundredth of a cost. If it is for real, I think it is just a matter of time before RFID becomes mainstream. Actually to be honest I thought it was going to get mainstream even earlier when Microsoft decided to venture into it. Cost was a major deterrent and if Multimedia Display Technologies can address that, it is the best of times for RFID.
Next were the Internet.Web 2.0 companies. To be honest, I attended this session with a pre-conceived notion that it was just going to be the cliched social networking stuff but was pleasantly surprised. The theme of Proto this time around revolved a lot around search and more search ( either using web or in the mobile space). Be in Inasra Technologies which ‘searches’ and gives you the best accomodation or Pennywise Solutions that “searches” and acts as your neighbourhood guide ( through their product Tolmolbol) or Routeguru which in its own way acts as a direction provider. Routeguru solves a very real problem. Something I faced last week. I was in Delhi and had to get somewhere. Now I am not fluent in Hindi and it was a big pain trying to explain to the Taxi driver whom I engaged in the airport to get me to the place I wanted to. He did not know the place, and he had to stop every so often to get further directions. Had I used Routeguru’s guide I probably would have known the well known landmarks and I could have told the driver. I am surely going to sign up for the Beta release and see how it goes.
Another company in the internet splace was Minekey. Their product is supposed to make content discovery on blogs and websites way easier and I plan to play around with their widget and see how it works. Now this blog does not allow me to place custom widgets so I probably would need to use my other blog. Genie Interactive Pvt Ltd presented their Voice Mail as an email solution. With the risk of being judgmental, I goto say there was nothing innovative here. Voice Mail has evolved so much in the last two or three years. Enterprise solutions like Cisco Unity addresses more problems and companies like spinvox have been offering this for ages ( And from what I have heard Spinvox was not doing too well on this either?)
Next was the mobile space. Rarefind Engineering Innovations promises to deliver content across mobile phones in such a way that the end user mobile phone does not have to worry too much about the content format, size etc. Now this is where I kind of got confused. In the demo, one guy sent a document to another. When he did this all he specified was the phone number he was sending the document too. Who does the decision making that the user has a specific phone make and so he would have to receive the content in that specific format. Hopefully the guys would read this and clear this.
And then there was BuzzWorks. I am going to discuss this in a later post because I have lot of thoughts on this one. ( Incidentally it was this company that was the reason behind by earlier post).
There were presentations from companies belonging to entirely disparate verticals clubbed under ‘New Frontiers’. Thinkworks with their creative Clay Animated movies, Lucid Software with expertise in Non Destructive Testing and Hyper Analytix whose focus area being Semiconductor Design Automation kind of made us realize that there were other areas were innovation was alive and kicking.
That kind of broadly summarizes most of the presentations. As for the actual event itself, it was way better than the previous edition. The presentations were crisp, more professional and to the point. Good job presenters and the mentors who help keep it that way. Other than a couple of presentations that did not have a demo, most of them flaunted their wares and thus kept the powerpoints to the minimal.