|By Business Wire||
|July 23, 2014 08:30 AM EDT||
The time has come for the maker movement. The time has come for the re-shoring of manufacturing in North America. The time has come for a shift in venture capital investment to hardware. And the time has come to close the technology gender gap. At the intersection of these multiple transformations is the winner of the 2014 N100 Startup Competition: Linkitz.
Linkitz is a wearable electronic toy. It's modular and snaps together, allowing users to modify and expand the device. Linkitz is designed for kids and doesn't require any knowledge of programming--reassembling the blocks will change how they behave. Anyone can program Linkitz, they just don't know it yet.
“Wearables are the new black, and kids want their own. Linkitz makes smart and modular wearable toys that blink and buzz and will help kids learn programming too,” explains Andrew Macrae, CTO of Linkitz.
“Girls are big on accessories and Linkitz will give them a chance to get programming chops as they make toys their own,” says Lyssa Neel, CEO of Linkitz and a MIT PhD who co-founded two other companies. “Making technology playful at an early age can go a long way,” she adds.
By winning N100, Co-Founders Neel and Macrae have secured a $100,000 early-stage investment from Northumberland CFDC to finalize, test and market their product. “Linkitz is already working with the prototyping and engineering team at a local Cobourg manufacturer,” said George Harvey, Chairman of the business development corporation that runs N100. “They will be establishing their headquarters and operations here in Northumberland where they will be able to leverage local innovation infrastructure and value-added partnerships.”
“A social toy and fashion item can motivate kids to learn more about technology. Building this type of confidence can help kids get comfortable with technology and grow from mere consumers to active creators,” Neel said.
“Through innovation, Lyssa Neel is creating a pathway of possibilities for a generation of young women,” said Wendy Curtis, Executive Director of Northumberland CFDC. “And we are putting the spotlight on an impressive entrepreneur who is helping to close the gender gap for women in tech.”
This year, Linkitz won out over forty-one other startups from Canada, the USA and around the world. The next call for applications for the annual N100 Startup Competition will go out again in January, 2015 with a registration deadline in March.
Linkitz is a wearable electronic toy that allows kids to have fun while easily learning to program. A Canadian hardware startup led by Co-Founder and CEO Lyssa Neel, Linkitz is the winner of the 2014 N100 Startup Competition and was recently accepted into the 2014 HAXLR8R Fall cohort. Follow Linkitz on Twitter @Link_itz.
About the N100 Startup Competition
N100 is an annual startup competition led by Northumberland CFDC in partnership with Spark Centre and a high-level Power Panel including David Pamenter, Business Law Partner at Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT). Startups compete for $100,000 in early-stage investment capital through a series of three Rounds: the Pitch, Business Planning and Negotiation. The winner of the inaugural year of the competition in 2013 was Unified Computer Intelligence Corporation (UCIC) who went on from their win to launch an expansive beta program for their ubiquitous computing device (dubbed the “Ubi”) and to secure a $635,000 angel round led by Maple Leaf Angels.
Northumberland Community Futures Development Corporation (Northumberland CFDC) is a business development corporation dedicated to providing financing and strategy for entrepreneurs. A member of Canada’s Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (CVCA) Northumberland CFDC receives core operational funding from FedDev Ontario.
Spark Centre is one of fourteen not-for-profit Regional Innovation Centres (RICs) that form part of the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE). The RIC works to improve competitiveness and visibility of Northumberland and Durham as a world-class innovation cluster.
In his session at Cloud Expo, Robert Cohen, an economist and senior fellow at the Economic Strategy Institute, provideed economic scenarios that describe how the rapid adoption of software-defined everything including cloud services, SDDC and open networking will change GDP, industry growth, productivity and jobs. This session also included a drill down for several industries such as finance, social media, cloud service providers and pharmaceuticals.
Dec. 9, 2016 03:45 PM EST Reads: 560
"Dice has been around for the last 20 years. We have been helping tech professionals find new jobs and career opportunities," explained Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 9, 2016 03:30 PM EST Reads: 1,224
Extracting business value from Internet of Things (IoT) data doesn’t happen overnight. There are several requirements that must be satisfied, including IoT device enablement, data analysis, real-time detection of complex events and automated orchestration of actions. Unfortunately, too many companies fall short in achieving their business goals by implementing incomplete solutions or not focusing on tangible use cases. In his general session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products...
Dec. 9, 2016 03:15 PM EST Reads: 975
"ReadyTalk is an audio and web video conferencing provider. We've really come to embrace WebRTC as the platform for our future of technology," explained Dan Cunningham, CTO of ReadyTalk, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at WebRTC Summit at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 9, 2016 03:15 PM EST Reads: 852
Infrastructure is widely available, but who’s managing inbound/outbound traffic? Data is created, stored, and managed online – who is protecting it and how? In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Jaeson Yoo, SVP of Business Development at Penta Security Systems Inc., discussed how to keep any and all infrastructure clean, safe, and efficient by monitoring and filtering all malicious HTTP/HTTPS traffic at the OSI Layer 7. Stop attacks and web intruders before they can enter your network.
Dec. 9, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 351
@DevOpsSummit taking place June 6-8, 2017 at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York Call for Papers is now open.
Dec. 9, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 2,007
The many IoT deployments around the world are busy integrating smart devices and sensors into their enterprise IT infrastructures. Yet all of this technology – and there are an amazing number of choices – is of no use without the software to gather, communicate, and analyze the new data flows. Without software, there is no IT. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation; Alan Williamson, Principal...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:45 PM EST Reads: 622
Businesses and business units of all sizes can benefit from cloud computing, but many don't want the cost, performance and security concerns of public cloud nor the complexity of building their own private clouds. Today, some cloud vendors are using artificial intelligence (AI) to simplify cloud deployment and management. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Ajay Gulati, Co-founder and CEO of ZeroStack, will discuss how AI can simplify cloud operations. He will cover the following topics: why clou...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:45 PM EST Reads: 1,034
Video experiences should be unique and exciting! But that doesn’t mean you need to patch all the pieces yourself. Users demand rich and engaging experiences and new ways to connect with you. But creating robust video applications at scale can be complicated, time-consuming and expensive. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Zohar Babin, Vice President of Platform, Ecosystem and Community at Kaltura, discussed how VPaaS enables you to move fast, creating scalable video experiences that reach your aud...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:42 PM EST Reads: 191
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann returns to 'DevOps at Cloud Expo 2017' as Conference Chair The @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. "DevOps is set to be one of the most profound disruptions to hit IT in decades," said Andi Mann. "It is a natural extension of cloud computing, and I have seen both firsthand and in independent research the fantastic results DevOps delivers. So I am excited to help the great t...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:30 PM EST Reads: 788
Rapid innovation, changing business landscapes, and new IT demands force businesses to make changes quickly. In the eyes of many, containers are at the brink of becoming a pervasive technology in enterprise IT to accelerate application delivery. In this presentation, attendees learned about the: The transformation of IT to a DevOps, microservices, and container-based architecture What are containers and how DevOps practices can operate in a container-based environment A demonstration of how ...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:30 PM EST Reads: 1,258
"At ROHA we develop an app called Catcha. It was developed after we spent a year meeting with, talking to, interacting with senior citizens watching them use their smartphones and talking to them about how they use their smartphones so we could get to know their smartphone behavior," explained Dave Woods, Chief Innovation Officer at ROHA, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 9, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 813
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 376
Without lifecycle traceability and visibility across the tool chain, stakeholders from Planning-to-Ops have limited insight and answers to who, what, when, why and how across the DevOps lifecycle. This impacts the ability to deliver high quality software at the needed velocity to drive positive business outcomes. In his general session at @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo, Phil Hombledal, Solution Architect at CollabNet, discussed how customers are able to achieve a level of transparency that e...
Dec. 9, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 1,290
WebRTC is the future of browser-to-browser communications, and continues to make inroads into the traditional, difficult, plug-in web communications world. The 6th WebRTC Summit continues our tradition of delivering the latest and greatest presentations within the world of WebRTC. Topics include voice calling, video chat, P2P file sharing, and use cases that have already leveraged the power and convenience of WebRTC.
Dec. 9, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 1,776