Monday, December 17, 2012

BizSpark --- What will you Build? Part I

imageThere is a program called BizSpark that I’d venture to guess most of you have never heard of. Well, this post is attempting to change that and to get you to think about BizSpark and if you have the skills … to BUILD something.

It will take skills, passion and conviction to actually ship something. The good news is … Microsoft is helping to smooth the process by offering up products, support and a stage to show off your ideas. Microsoft is making it easy to kick start your ideas AND to launch them into the stratosphere.


Why BizSpark?
BizSpark is a program envisioned and built by Microsoft to help people of all walks of life build innovative solutions and to bring those solutions to market. Of course, the intent is to build solutions for the Microsoft platform. However, I have seen some very interesting solutions that support multiple platforms and environments.

Prompting the question:

What Will You Build?

What’s Been Built? What Have You Seen?
imageFor me … Soluto is my favorite Bizspark App.

Soluto does something that is about as simplistic and boring as you can imagine, but they make it fun. This is not a slight against Soluto or the problem they address. The point is that they make something that EVERYONE (with a Windows PC) has to deal with and they make it fun and interesting and interactive.


One more reason to like Soluto --- out of 3000 entries from 100 countries … they won Microsoft’s BizSpark Partner Of The Year in 2012

What Else is Happening?
In a conversation I recently had with Doug Crets I was pleasantly surprised to hear of the great work they are doing with BizSpark. I was especially intrigued by the great companies and technologies being built for so many different solution areas and on so many different products within the Microsoft stack.

imageA few examples are listed below. However, as the proverbial "tip of the iceberg" I am barely showing anything. Like Helen of Troy ... BizSpark as a program is poised to help launch a 1000 apps. Actually … it’s more like 50,000 startups.


There are many others. A few of them Doug and I spoke about are listed here:

image Socedo -
Optimizing Social Media
Chalkable -
Changing the way students learn
Wappwolf -
Supercharging Dropbox & Google Drive
image Keyrocket -
Unlock your software's full potential
Oddly --- only Keyrocket mentions their association with BizSpark and then only sparingly. Perhaps they aren’t as interested in telling about where that came from. Or perhaps there is no requirement to mention BizSpark in their collateral. Anyway, it seems odd. (Note: this is MY comment … not Doug’s or anyone else’s at Microsoft)
BizSpark has Many Facets
Getting the Kids involved early is a smart move.
Check out DreamSpark
image Websites need updates too
image Windows Phone
is here
image Microsoft Azure Getting Cloud

Leading the Charge

imageDoug Crets is leading the BizSpark community and he’s doing a great job. What I like about Doug is that he thinks outside the box. In the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy he was able to get the word out that Microsoft had opened up their offices in midtown Manhattan so people could co-work and get things done. Well played Doug!

In addition to his regular posts about what’s going on in the BizSpark community he also engages with people on a personal level. This is great to see and it’s driving the BizSpark program to new heights.

Learn More about BizSpark here --- follow them on Twitter, Like their page on Facebook and check out their website.

Which prompts the question again:
What Will You Build?

imageLook for a part II of this post in the coming weeks. It will come out sooner with your help. Drop me a comment here and a note about your favorite BizSpark solution or solutions.

Then let’s see if we can collaborate on a post. I only know of the solutions I see. Your eyes and ears will help show off all the great things coming out of the BizSpark program.


Douglas Crets said...

Hi, Jeff. Thanks for the article. I wanted to clarify one thing. I had no role in opening up the Microsoft offices after Hurricane Sandy. That was done by the folks in the Microsoft office in NYC. I only made a mention that they were open.

Jeff Shuey said...

Aha. Well, communicating they were open was a BIG step and one that I hope more than a few people took advantage of. Thanks for the clarification. I tweaked the post to reflect that. So, you still get the Kudos and the Well Played status.