Art Documentation: Lo and Behold, I am Become as a God

The following two videos documents the little berlin gallery space during the >get >put exhibit. The first video is an overview of the gallery space after the previous nights panel discussion, the second video is documentation of how people experienced "Lo and Behold, I am become as a God." Enjoy.

What is a Mentor?

There are many types of mentors, from those that form relationships with young boys and girls to executives of large companies that guide promising new managers. The types of mentors this thesis is concerned about are experienced entrepreneurs "who actively contribute time, energy, and wisdom to startups" (Feld, 42). These mentors usually play an important role within their respective startup community (Feld, 42).

Mentors are different from advisors in their relationship with the startup. Even though an advisor and a mentor may have similar experiences, an advisor "has an economic relationship with the company he is advising" (Feld, 42). This difference between advisor and mentor stems from their motivation to contribute their experiences to the startup. The mentor's rewards from putting in time and energy is not a clear return on investment, but is a return on involvement. A return on involvement, the new ROI, is another way of saying that you're willing to "give before you get." Both Startup Communites by Brad Feld and The Rainforest by Hwang and Horowitt address the same cultural norm about entrepreneurs using different verbage. This norm, which extends to entrepreneurial mentors, is the willingness to give some of your time, energy, or wisdom to a startup or the community without having a clear return on your investment.

An infographic quantifying the relationship between a mentor and entrepreneur can be seen here.

Source: Startup Communities by Brad Feld

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Philadelphia Tech Startup Community

When I first began my thesis about mentors enabling entrepreneurial learning, I spent several months interviewing people looking for an area to focus within the Philadelphia Tech Startup Community. I began noticing patterns in the roles people played and eventually grouped their roles.

I then refined how everyone was interacting into a polished diagram, which aided as a tool to further discover where I should focus my thesis.

I then used this map as an interviewing tool to have interviewees show me where they perceive different resources to be allocated, for example, funding and mentorship. An example of one such interview is depicted below, a lengthier post about these interviews is here.

Finally, I went back to my studio and put the interviews all over the walls and again began looking for patterns and began drawing conclusions. A post about the analysis of these interviews is here.

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Thesis Committee Presentation: Mentoring System

My presentation to my thesis committee went well this past Wednesday. The final pieces of research and prototype implementations that need to occur are only a few months away. Two major steps that need to be taken is to collect ten to twenty more recordings of mentoring conversations and visualize them. The purpose is to create a baseline measurement before implementing the request for mentoring form. Creating a baseline will let me measure whether the request for mentoring form is effective or ineffective at enabling knowledge and experience transfer from mentor to entrepreneur. An example of one such conversation visual is shown below:

A few minor steps that need to be taken includes fleshing out the design for the different pieces of the mentoring system. I used prezi to present a poster of the mentoring system to my thesis committee, which you can interact with below. The only piece from the mentoring system that's reached a state for implementation is the request for mentoring form. The other pieces that need to be designed include the business readiness intake, the match-making system, the follow-up form, and the mentor sign-up form.

PSL ListServ Streamgraph

Has the PSL ListServ lost it's mojo? Short answer, no. But take a look at the streamgraph below to see the ebb and flow of various words used by the community. It seems that the amount of times the word "help" is being used has significantly increased relative to other categories this past month. This means people are using the word "help" in one of two different situations: one where people are asking for help, the other for giving help. Without going into each email containing the word help and highlighting each sentence, it's difficult to know whether asks or gives are occurring.

This streamgraph was built using processing and adobe illustrator.

RSA Animate - The Power of Outrospection

A great visualization of a talk about the power of outrospection and the role of empathy in figuring out who we are in order to live the eudomonic life. The speaker, philosopher Roman Krznaric, argues that the main tool for the twenty-first century is empathy. He dives beyond just the concept of empathy and shows why taking on other peoples perspectives can be revolutionary. He focuses on cognitive empathy, instead of affective empathy, as the main driver for a revolution of human relationships.

Mentoring System: Iteration 3

I've been working on making the mentoring system easier to read and understand the flow of entrepreneurs and mentors before and after they meet for a mentoring session. Any feedback is appreciated.

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Source Code: An Interactive Image Grid with JQuery

Over the weekend, I spent a few hours putting together a jquery script that allows for mouse detection over a 10 x 10 grid. I then placed an image over a 10x10 grid, as the mouse moves to different parts of the grid, different images appear. A demo of this can be viewed here. Take a look at the source code on the page to see it in action.

This is the portion of the code doing the main work:
And you can grab this code from my gist.