Meeting Location:
Emerging Enterprise Center at
Foley Hoag the Bay Colony Corporate Center
1000 Winter Street, Suite 4000 (North Entrance)
Waltham, MA 

Meeting Time: 6:30 - 9:30 pm

Meeting Cost:
$25 public, $10 students
and active military;
Promotional Registrations

Map and Directions


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

6:30 - 9:30 PM
Location: Emerging Center at Foley Hoag the Bay Colony Corporate Center, Waltham, MA

Computing: Coder-Jammed? Helping non-technical Early-Stage CEOs and Founders make sense of the software development process


So you’ve got a brilliant idea for a new software application or product that could make you and your investors rich – now what? Unless you’re bringing a degree in computer science or have prior experience delivering software-based products and services, you may well be lost in the jargon of competing software languages, platforms, and general coder-speak that determines how your brilliant idea actually gets created before you can bring it to market. The choices made early on in your application/product development cycle may have huge implications for your business model in the medium and long term, as certain platforms may be great for prototyping, but lousy at scale; other platforms may be the best long term solution, but bring overly expensive developer costs. Is .NET dead? Will Flash/Flex survive? Is Open-source a good or bad option? Should you consider Drupal, WordPress, Ruby on Rails for your web development? Why? If you’re trying to future-proof your application’s viability, how does one do that in a software developer environment of constant technical innovation? Early stage CEOs and founders need to have a grasp of these concepts to be empowered to make smart decisions about the direction of their business, even if it’s just to be able to coordinate with or manage a CTO, CIO, or outsourced development team effectively.

The September 21, 2010 EntreTech Forum will bring together local software developers and the professionals who manage them to distill and provide a lay-person’s view into the jargon-riddled word of software development. The panel discussion will deliver a general overview of the software development process, will provide a perspective on how software developers view the world and what motivates them, and then will dive into specific decision components. As ever, the discussion will be oriented towards a back-and-forth discussion with the audience, to make sure everyone walks away with enhanced understanding.

Andrew Fairbairn – Fairbairn Ventures

Sandro Hawke - w3.org - Technical Staff/Software & Standards Developer
Scott Fitchet – Bocoup - Software Developer
Daniel Von Kohorn - VKRA / Fund Investors LP / Beacon Angels / MediaTech Capital Partners
Andrew Rollins - Founder and Chief Software Architect - Localytics


Andrew Fairbairn – FAIRBAIRN VENTURES – Managing Principal

Andrew is a Cambridge-based investor, entrepreneur and advisor who partners with driven entrepreneurs to rapidly prove out value propositions and to build solid businesses. He has worked with many executive teams over the course of his career to launch, build, expand, transition and/or retool their businesses.

Prior to establishing Fairbairn Ventures, Andrew was a founding partner of JVKellyGroup, Inc. (JVKG), a New York-based management consulting, performance management and software development firm recently sold to D&B. He has also served as Vice President of Deutsche Bank, focused on corporate venturing in financial technology companies and strategic planning roles in New York and London. Andrew began his career with UBS Securities in New York, where he worked on global networking and telecommunications industry financings, across a range of geographies and investment banking product disciplines.

Andrew earned his B.A. in Economics and M.A. in International Development Policy from Stanford University.


Sandro Hawke – World Wide Web Consortium (w3.org) – Technical Staff/Software & Standards Developer
(www.w3.org; and www.decentralyze.com)

Sandro Hawke is member of the technical staff at the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) at MIT, where he coordinates the development and deployment of technical standards for open data sharing. He currently serves as the eGovernment Lead and staff contact for three Semantic Web Working Groups, developing industry standards: SPARQL, RIF, and OWL. He also develops software, including experimental implementations of OWL and RIF, and tools to facilitate group operations, such wiki-base publishing.

Before coming to W3C, Sandro founded the Information Roads Foundation, and co-founded ELF Communications, doing early data-platform development.

Sandro has a BS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Scott Fitchet – Bocoup.com – Software Developer
(www.figital.com or www.bocoup.com)

Scott Fitchet is a software developer, data analyst, and travel photographer based in Boston, MA. He is currently building data-driven HTML5 applications with Bocoup, LLC.

Scott specializes in application design using open technologies such as Linux, SQL, and Javascript and has worked for a wide-range of organizations including Allaire, Raytheon IDS, The Thunderbird School of Global Management, and Compliance Week.

Scott recieved his BA in Rhetorical Theory from Hamline University in St. Paul, MN, and studied figure sculpture at Sanctuary Arts in Eliot, ME.

Daniel Von Kohorn – VKRA – Portfolio Manager; Independent angel investor and Programmer
(www.vkra.com; www.vonkohorn.com; www.beaconangels.com)

Dan works at VKRA, Inc where he is portfolio manager of a commodity fund and is a member of the investment committee for two global equity funds. He is a programmer with experience building analytics and research tools in bonds, equities, commodities, derivatives, and asset allocation. He also does tech due diligence and strategy in investment banking at Mediatech Capital. He is a co-founder of Beacon Angels, a Boston-based angel group, investing in early-stage companies in New England. Previously, Dan founded and sold a company, was director of Research for Winged Keel Asset Management, and was an analyst at JP Morgan Investments.

Dan earned an undergraduate degree in Economics and a Certificate in Applied and Computational Mathematics at the Princeton University in 1997.

Andrew Rollins – Localytics – Founder and Chief Software Architect
(www.localytics.com and www.andrewrollins.com)

Andrew is Founder and Chief Software Architect at angel-backed start-up Localytics where he is focused on developing mobile analytics platforms for iPhone, iPad, Android and BlackBerry applications. His specialties include: Web programming, server architecture, databases, storage technologies, Windows, Linux, Ruby on Rails, PHP, C, C++, C#, HTML, CSS.

Before Localytics, Andrew spent several years at Microsoft working on storage technologies for Windows.

Andrew earned his B.A. in Computer Science from Boston University.






Lawrence C. Grumer | Tel: 617-325-9852 | lgrumer@taacorp.com