Good Luck at theETel Mashup, Thomas

The O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference - ETel - starts tomorrow, and should be a great event. I won't be attending, but have been following Tim O'Reilly from a distance, and think he's focused on a lot of cool and important things, especially around Web 2.0. For everyday developments and insights, their Emerging Telephony blog is a great resource, especially Editor, Bruce Stewart.

Fellow indie consultant, colleague and blogger, Thomas Howe, gave me a call Saturday night to tell me he's presenting at ETel on Tuesday. He's been selected as one of three developer mashups who get to present at O'Reilly's "first ever" Telephony Mashup Contest. First prize - $1,500, so there's real money on the line. Sounds like a good idea to me.

I'm not going to tell you what his mashup is, but I do think he's got a winning idea. He may be an Engineer, but Thomas understands what makes business sense, and he's got a application that solves a real problem and has a real financial benefit. Good luck Thomas - I'll be rootin' for ya.

Thomas was actually planning to come up to the Toronto area today, and we were going to meet up tonight, but when he got the news, those plans changed. So, I'll find other ways to keep busy tonight, and we'll get together another time. I can live with that, and if he wins, he's buying dinner. That's fair.

Another notable happening at ETel is the Launch Pad, co-produced by O'Reilly and Om Malik. Should be a great forum for getting up close with some promising startups. The seven finalists were announced the other day, and I'm friendly with two of them - GrandCentral and Flat Planet Phone Company. GrandCentral has been on my briefing calendar for a while, and a cursory visit to Andy Abramson's blog will quickly put you in the midst of all the coverage they're getting (they're a client of Andy's). Flat Planet is new to the scene, but I've made fast friends with their CEO, Moshe Maeir, and I think they're on to something good. I'd put them on your watch list.

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