In case, you are not familiar, this is what happens at in50hrs (run every quarter by Vijay and The Startup Centre team):
- People come up with ideas and present them to their peers. They give a short pitch to describe what they want to build. Some times this pitch is to validate an idea and get questions. Some times, it is to attract developers to come and work on their idea. Some have their own development/design teams (this means, they already sold the idea and brought a few people along to slog with them over the weekend).
- A set of designers/developers/mentors come to this event as well. Most of them actually come to help any one who needs their skills/advice.
- After the presentations, the audience votes for their favorite ideas. This is one level of validation.
- The participants network and form teams. Those who cannot find supporters find other teams to work with.
- The pitches happen on a Friday evening and the demos happen on Sunday evenings. So from the time to pitch to demo is barely 50 hours.
- During demo time, a larger audience shows up. Some of them are just curious. Some others have been to past events and enjoy being there. Some of them are regulars who can not resist being there. A small group of more experienced entrepreneurs are invited by Vijay and team to come and give feedback.
- After each demo (which last 3 minutes), audience can ask questions, make suggestions.
Now let me tell you why I go there whenever I can.
- Listening to ideas is always fun. But some times I get to ask questions and understand what people are trying to do. I get to make a few helpful suggestions.
- Some ideas are good. You want to see them as products. You do your bit for those teams.
- I learn a lot from the discussions during the demos. When we have other experienced entrepreneurs present, some of their suggestions are useful too. Every one has different perspective and that is very valuable.
- The main reason I go there is to meet some really cool people. They are different from the hundreds of thousands of others in a special way. They take the initiative. Knowing such people is always a pleasure.
In50hrs tag line is “an idea to prototype in 50 hours”. But something more than that happens there. I think it is a bit of magic. I am glad to be part of it. It is an enriching experience.