Read Audrey

A lady's perspective on startups

Posts tagged Tech

Oct 14

Thank you Brooklyn Beta.

I just wrapped up my third year attending Brooklyn Beta, and lemme tell ya - it was incredible.  There’s nothing like sitting in a room full of the most talented an kind-hearted people on the web.  But what I love most about Brooklyn Beta is that the focus is always on sharing ideas that are above the fold.  Organizers intentionally invite speakers who share ideas that are meant to BIG solve problems.  Problems that plague systems like education, health care and government.  This isn’t about discovering the next SnapChat.  It’s about bringing people together to use technology that have the power to shake entire people groups to the core. Brooklyn Beta breeds a kind of big picture thinking that a SnapChat could only aspire to evoke.

I’ll admit, I didn’t immediately recognize Tim O’Reilly and I had to ask a friend what “IRL” meant when Tavi Gevinson humorously said it in her Skype chat with Ira Glass.  Clearly, I have some catchup work.  But my ignorance makes me that much more thankful for the people who make Brooklyn Beta what it is: a gathering of friendly people and a charge to make something for love.

To the speakers, Brooklyn Beta crew, and volunteers: Thank you for your relentless hard work.  I don’t know how you did it, but you were able to turn something amazing into something spectacular.  Hugs all around. Till next year.  

Apr 12

My first tech hangover

So, you know it’s getting interesting when you’re up all night :

reading Git Immersion

on your iPhone …

under the covers …

in the dark …

$ git checkout -b latenight 

$ git status

# nothing to commit - have tech hangover 

Whatever happened to reading comics with a flashlight?

Dear God I’m tired.

Apr 10

I’m coming for you, Starter League.

Two years ago, I packed up my Long Island City bedroom overlooking Manhattan to travel the world.  My friends wished me ‘Bon Voyage!’ and I had a stomach full of butterflies.

I had quit my job and bought a one way ticket to Australia.  My exact itinerary was unknown, I just knew that I was going away.  Far far away.  For the next three months, I was going to see the world.  I was going to do what folks in cubicles only dream about.  The plan was:

  1. Treat myself to a trip around the world
  2. Come back to New York
  3. Start my business.  

After riding elephants, petting tigers and seeing the most beautiful beaches in the world, that’s exactly what I did.  

I was pretty freaked about starting a business.  

Tiger? — yea whatever.

I didn’t know what I was doing, but I trusted myself enough to figure stuff out along the way.  I knew if I waited to accumulate all the knowledge to run a business before actually starting one, it would never happen.  And I didn’t have the time or patience to wait around for a bolt of lightning to tell me I was ready.  I just don’t think life works like that. Most people don’t want to start the race until they feel fully trained, have the entire strategy figured out and know they can win.  But for me, I couldn’t wait.  I knew that as long as I kept my head on straight every day, that no matter what happened, I would always land on my feet.  Failure in my business was probable, but if I asked a lot of questions and had the discipline to learn, personal success was guaranteed.

Starter League

Fast forward 2 years, and I am once again packing up my room.  But this time, I’m not going too far.  This time, I’m going to Chicago to learn front end development at The Starter League.  Life is full of surprises.  One of my biggest surprises from this past year is my obsession with learning how to code.  I never thought that I would be one to get my hands dirty with brackets and tags, but somewhere along the way, I’ve gotten caught up in the mud — and I love it.  I can’t get myself to stop.  I’m spending all hours of the day in Sublime Text 2 and have tested out more broken lines of code than I could ever count.  

It’s a long and arduous task, learning to code is.  It always makes me a little miffed when I hear someone say, "Oh, it’s easy. Just do it like this… [types one line, then done]."

My reaction -

Chris Farley Gif

I don’t have an engineering background and my brain doesn’t seem to work the same way as my computer nerd friends.  It’s frustrating.  I feel like a little person trying to climb a mountain.  But what I lack in natural ability, I making up with laser focused determination.  Maybe it’s just me being stubborn.  I simply CAN’T give up.  I reFUSE to give up.   Take THAT you insufferable semicolons!

So that’s why I’m spending the little money I have left on the Advanced HTML/CSS at the Starter League in Chicago.  I’ve been teaching myself for a while now, and I hope the program will give me the structure and support that I’ve been lacking these past few months.  If I must be a little person climbing Mount Everest, at least I’ll have a map, a sherpaa and some hiking buddies.   

Will this detour on my entrepreneurship adventure pan out?  I had my first class yesterday.  I think it will.  

Thanks for reading!


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