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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I've been online since 1971 and I like to smoothe the way for everyone else. Among other things I co-founded Sympatico, the world's first easy-to-use Internet service (and Canada's largest).

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Fostering a startup culture

I had lunch today with fellow TorCampers Matthew Burpee, Martin Cleaver, and Jonas Brandon. One topic that came up was the relative lack of a tech startup culture in Toronto. I believe that one cause is the lack of a sizable established network of people sharing such a culture. In Kitchener-Waterloo, 100 km west of Toronto, lots of potential startup people know each other, directly or indirectly, via the University of Waterloo. And in Kanata (a suburb of Ottawa) so many people are connected via Mitel and its descendant companies such as Corel and Newbridge (the latter now part of Alcatel).

Fortunately TorCamp has arisen and may grow that culture. To help in that process, after lunch we walked over to Jonas's nearby home and created a page where TorCampers can profile themselves all on one page, complete with photo. It may seem like a small thing, but I think it helps to support the notion that TorCamp is a community of people and not just a series of events. And that such a community provides resources for those who might create a startup.


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