Technical.ly Philly

Creative

Feb. 11, 2011 12:00 pm

Ignite Philly 7: less tech, more cash

The seventh edition of Ignite Philly featured a few firsts: it was the first time the event accepted sponsors, it marked the most charitable Ignite ever and it was the first time somebody made an alcoholic beverage onstage using a bike.

Danny Gerber and a volunteer make a fruit smoothie onstage using a bicycle.

The seventh edition of Ignite Philly featured a few firsts: it was the first time the event accepted sponsors, it marked the most charitable Ignite ever and it was the first time somebody made an alcoholic beverage onstage using a bike (see above).

Past Ignite coverage:Ignite Philly 3

Ignite Philly 4

Ignite Philly 5

Ignite Philly 6

Part of Global Ignite Week, Ignite Philly 7 gave speakers five minutes and 15 slides that lasted 20 seconds each to share an idea that is changing Philadelphia for the better. Unlike past Ignites, the latest rendition was light on technology-related talks and packed with folks trying to make Philadelphia a better place to live through urban planning, soda pop, art and saving celebrities.

During intermission, organizers Geoff DiMasi, David Clayton and others presented the South Philly Co-Op with a $1,000 check and also handed out 125 cards containing $10 of Microsoft’s money to be donated to the cause of the card holder’s choice on donorschoose.org.

As part of Global Ignite Week, multiple Ignite events were taking place across the world and each city holding an Ignite was given the $10 cards. The city with the most total money donated is placed on an international leader board and at intermission, Alex Hillman, co-founder of Independents Hall and Ignite Philly sponsor promised to throw a party if Philly tops the leader board. As of publishing, Philadelphia is ranked first.

Below we give out a few awards, including the “Oh Snap” award, best overall talk and best pipes.

BEST OVERALL

Sarah Thorp (left) and Joe Forkin of the Delaware River Waterfront Corp.

Our vote is for “Evil Planning for the Delaware Waterfront.”

At Ignite Philly 6, organizer DiMasi proposed that the section of I-95 between the Ben Franklin and Walt Whitman bridges be torn down to make way for green space. While the city is not about fire up the bulldozers, Sarah Thorp and Joe Forkin showed that there is hope. Rather than wait for a perfectly minted plan, the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation has already got to work, adding green space at the intersection of the major arterials and the waterfront from Oregon to Allegheny and connected them with bike and pedestrian trails. So what’s so evil about DRWC’s plan?

“To infiltrate our children and brainwash them at a young age” to enjoy parks and trails on the waterfront, said Farkin.

Something tells us that won’t be too hard. We’re already giddy for the Race Street Pier, due open in May.

Honorable Mention: “The Dumbest Guy in the Room” – Pete Fecteau of Code for America.

BEST PIPES

Del Conner, manager of the Physick House on South 4th Street.

While standing at Ignite, it’s hard to ignore the punk rock vibe that permeates the entire affair. The viewers stand, nearly everyone has a beer in their hand and the crowd will go crazy if you poor your heart out on stage.

Del Conner, site manager at the historic Physick House, spent the majority of his talk retracing the steps of his ancestors which include Dr. Physick, pioneer of modern American Surgery and inventor of soda and Phillip Syng, lifelong friend of Ben Franklin and renowned silversmith.

But what really payed homage to the venue was Del Conner breaking out into a jingle for Dr. Physick soda which he held in his hand during much of his presentation.

FUNNIEST

Nick Darling has a plan, you see. When you become a celebrity, he has just the way of making sure you don’t get arrested. Or go bankrupt. Or look uncool. His (almost) complete talk below:

[viddler id-d7d6c257 h-370 w-420]

THE “OH SNAP” AWARD

Chris Satullo of Newsworks and WHYY pulled no punches.

Chris Satullo of WHYY presented Newsworks, the station’s new news site that is a mix of WHYY personalities, reader-submissions and hyperlocal journalism.

Satullo wasted no time saying that NewsWorks wouldn’t try and bury the news under “soft-core porn” like some other news sites. He said he wouldn’t name any names, but even someone in the back row could spot the Philly.com screenshot on the slide behind him.

Disclosure: Technically Philly is friendly with Satullo and the Newsworks staff.

LOUDEST APPLUASE

John Kromer smiles during his ovation

For a politician, John Kromer knows that it’s not all about him. In an Ignite first, an individual running for office took the stage. But Kromer’s isn’t your average politician.

Kromer spent nearly his entire presentation speaking about the inefficiencies of the Sheriff’s department. For example, at the current rate, it would take the department 14 years to auction off all 14,000 of Philadelphia’s foreclosed properties.

However, Kromer does not think he is the best man for the job. If elected, he plans to immediately dismantle the department and resign, an idea that had the Ignite crowd cheering loudly for nearly ten seconds.

THE COMPLETE SETLIST

  1. “Who Shot Lorem Ipsum?” – Steve Berry
  2. “Evil Planning for the Delaware Riverfront” – Joe Forkin, Sarah Thorp
  3. “Suckless” – Nic Darling
  4. “Urban Nutrition Common Sense” – Danny Gerber
  5. “Dr. Physick Soda Pop” – Del Conner
  6. “The Philadelphia Science Festival” – Gerri Trooskin
  7. Intermission
  8. “Preserving a Family Collection” – Lee Price
  9. “Weathervane Incubator” – Brian McTear
  10. “The Dumbest Guy in the Room” – Pete Fecteau
  11. “Little Berlin and Emerald Street Urban Farm: a new collaboration” – Kristen Taylor, Patrick Dunn
  12. “Newsworks: For you, with you, by you” – Chris Satullo
  13. “Toward a World Class Greater Philadelphia” – Nick Frontino
  14. “The Last Sheriff” – John Kromer
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Sean Blanda is an adviser to Technical.ly, the local technology news network, having cofounded its flagship Technically Philly in February 2009. He is a media consultant, engagement editor for Behance and lives in Brooklyn, NYC.

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