Last night

Last night I went to an event put on by a co-working space in Inglewood. I’ve worked for a couple of startups and work in social media so I wanted to check it out. The talk was really interesting and it’s fun chatting with different people.

There were two really cool things about last night:

1.

There were three speakers and at the start they were asked to talk about what their business is and why they are working in tech startups in Calgary. One of the guys talked about how he was from Toronto and lived here for a while before moving back east. He had finished up with a business and was thinking about what to do next. He said that when thinking about Calgary he looked at trends in energy and renewables and decided that the oil patch is doomed and will never recover. This is bad but it means that something needs to replace it and he wanted to be a part of building it. The collapse of the oil patch also means that there is a huge opportunity for tech and creative industries to move in. Cheap leases anybody?

It was cool to hear someone in Calgary say what I’ve been thinking. Coming back from Scotland it feels like Alberta is a different planet in terms of how people think about energy. Edinburgh is going full electric for cabs, Scotland runs entirely on renewables and is building a huge charging network. They even have the technology in place for single-level buses to run electric. The rest of the EU is going big on renewables. I feel like most people here don’t see that trend. Yes, we are not Europe but we inhabit the world where Germany, Norway and the Netherlands want to ban the sale of petrol and the internal combustion engine. So it was exciting to hear someone say they see the same trends as I do and think it means big problems for Calgary if we don’t come up with something else. It was even cooler that everyone nodded and was on board.

Tech is growing in Calgary. These are the people who are growing it. They’re not just saying things they’re creating what comes next.

2.

Start ups are businesses. Messy, complicated businesses. There’s always a good reason not to start one and an enormous number of struggles when you do. I want to grow my photography into a business but have no idea how to do that. I can’t figure out the answer and at a basic level being around all these people making businesses happen was a big motivator.

I want to move forward and I’m trying to come up with goals to get me there. Instead of feeling like I’m floating and not going anywhere I want to move forward.

I will take any help I can get on this. If it’s advice, experience or a gig. Hit me.

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