Vanadis at Google for Entrepreneurs Week

September 27th, 2012 | by | event, startups


Monti (our lead designer) with the robot at Google offices

Today Vanadis were at the #GFEweek on Google offices in Madrid.

The event was mainly focussed on how Google tools can help entrepreneurs.

After the welcome speech a general one on the opportunities that we have now as entrepreneurs and a bit of how Google can help, there were several simultaneous presentations about the different services of Google so we split the team (we were two from Vanadis there) and went for Google+ and Maps from the first sessions, and Ads and Mobile on the second part.

Monti (our lead designer) with the robot at Google offices

Monti (our lead designer) with the robot at Google offices during #GFEweek 2012 in Madrid

On the Maps speech we show some of the less known tools for geolocation services. I found quite interesting the option of developing you own streetview like views and insert some images / text on top of your pictures, and new arrows to move inside the buildings for instance… getting this way a mixture between street view and augmented reality.

Also the option for showing clusters of points in the maps depending on the zoom level seemed interesting, I have seen similar stuff on CartoDB, and Open Street Map so we will have to investigate further on this.

My Second talk was about Mobile and there we got some interesting numbers, like the fact that only one out of four business in Spain has a mobile landing page. And that the use of tablets it’s mainly done at night at home.

Also the increasing number of mobile terminals is reflected on the searches… so definitely it’s time to go mobile! For a business now a days, should be a must, to have a mobile landing page and/or a mobile App.

In the end was a closing session by some investors and a nice networking cocktail where we had the chance to talk with the Google experts on the different technologies, and with the investors.

In the end it was a very Business oriented event, but very interesting.

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Presenting Quddy on 42Beers

September 13th, 2012 | by | event, startups, uncategorized


Alex barrera Presenting the rules for 42 Beers

As we said in our previous post:

42 Beers is an event oriented to communication where two Startups do their pitches in front of a mixed audience of Press, Bloggers, and Techies… and then they receive constructive feedback from the audience.

Today we were presenting Quddy on 42Beers, we will pitch with Justo Hidalgo from 24 Symbols, a cool startup with a revolutionary technology for the e-book industry.

For us the experience was really interesting, we got a lot of interesting feedback, that will help to improve Quddy and to explain betterwhat exactly is Quddy (specially when the audience doesn’t have a techie background…).

The Quddy presentation by Alex Barrera was also inspiring and gave us some ideas that we can use to send the message in a different way.

With all this I’m sure next time we pitch Quddy, we will do it much better.

In the end the networking  was aslo very nice, we had the chance to met some very cool people and after all the event was very interesting.

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#debate10: looking for common points between developers and non tech entrepreneurs

July 3rd, 2012 | by | event, startups



Yesterday we attended to a very interesting event, with the title #debate10 the idea was to find why the non tech entrepreneurs are usually complaining that they can’t find talented developers to develop their ideas, meanwhile the developers (in Spain) have the idea that are not valued enough.

David Bonilla talking on #debate10

David Bonilla talking on #debate10

Here I’m a bit biased, as we are a Startup created by techies, all of us being developers for long time, so I’m among the ones that usually companies doesn’t value enough the developers. But I was there with an open mind and I learned a lot… I’ve realized long ago that as a developer you need someone that understand the business and how to make the money next to you. But still I show and understood some of the needs of an MBA with a project trying to find a tech partner, or the needs of a company when it’s looking for developers.

One of the most interesting ideas I show was that in Spanish people use the term Programador as Programmer, Developer, Software Engineer… without making a clear difference. Some companies expect to get a great developer with a very low salary and without an interesting and challenging project… on the other hand… developers with just a couple of years of experience and without a keep learning attitude some times act as experts when they don’t really give the quality development expected form a experience developer.

As some of the participants on the debate pointed out, a talented developer needs a lot of experience, and an attitude of learning every day because the technology we are using it’s changing every day, evolving, and we have to evolve with it… learn to use new tools, discover new development processes, sometimes we must learn new programing languages, or new frameworks… to keep being competitive.

Meanwhile the companies and entrepreneurs, have to give an realistic, enthusiastic and challenging project. Be ready to invest on talent and understand that developing good software takes time. Understanding how is the work of the developers it’s basic to recognize the talented ones and know what can you expect from the development team.

And here is where some times the CTO can be the key that helps making the communication between the CEO and the development team fluent and understandable for everyone.

Beyond all this, I think the debate was just the start and we should keep working on. One good step would be doing more mixed events, encouraging developers to go to the events for entrepreneurs (like Iniciador Madrid or the Tetuán Valley Startup School) and promote developer’s meetings (like Betabeers or Codemotion) on the business schools.

Finally I want to thank Willhelm Lappe, Emilio Rey, and Iván Pérez (the organizers of the debate), utopic_US (thank’s for the space) and of course to the guests of the debate  José Manuel Béas, David Bonilla, Enrique Dans, Diego Mariño, Sebastián Muriel, Raúl Mata, Agustín Cuenca, Nuño López-Coronado, Luis Rivera, Pablo Rodriguez, Pablo Almunia, Raúl Jiménez, Daniel Brandi and Pablo Ruíz Muzquíz and the other participants that were giving also their opinion.

Related articles (in Spanish):


#3 42 Beers

May 23rd, 2012 | by | event, startups


Today we are attending the 3rd edition of 42 Beers organized by Press 42 .

As you may know 42 Beers is an event oriented to communication where two Startups do their pitches in front of a mixed audience of Press, Bloggers, and Techies… and then they receive constructive feedback from the audience.

The idea is to focus the feedback on the communication part and on how to tell the history of the Startup.

Alex barrera Presenting the rules for 42 Beers

After each Startup do their pitch, Alex Barrera (@abarrera) does his own pitch on that Startup, trying to show how he would do it. And then the audience give him feedback also (taking o

n account that none of them are his startups…).

In the end everybody learn an improve a bit their communication skills.

And of course after the presentations and the feedback there is a networking session with some Beers (today and on last edition sponsored by Angel Medinilla @angel_m, thanks Angel!!).

Today’s will pitch Qrystal and Ducksboard, let see how they do it…

They did two good pitches, but the audience found some things to improve and the most interesting part was when we started to give feedback, both Startups (and Alex) got a lot of interesting feedback, and we all learned something new.

In the end was again a very productive event and we had also some interesting conversations during the beers part and met some interesting people.

See you in the next 42 Beers!!

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April 24th, 2012 | by | agile, event


Very interesting the #lovemondays talk NO PLANNING, NO TIMING by the girls of @patheleven at @mataderomadrid, congrats @rlaina,@amaliahern.

They have managed to summon a really big audience, the place was packed and the ones that were late were just watching from the door.

They explained a how to use a Kanban board and how to use the Pomodoro Technique, to improve the time management.

But the most interesting part was the Q&A session where they demonstrated how they actually use this methodologies inside their Startup to answer some of the big amout of questions that people asked.

In the end we had some time for networking and we had the chance to talk with Raquel who, as always, show her will to help us improve our way of working.

In Vanadis will probably use some of the knowledge we got in this talk, so we can say the event was a very productive, and we are very happy with the oucomes!

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We went to The App Fest (part 1): entrepreneurs

April 23rd, 2012 | by | android, apps, congress, ios, startups


we went to the app fest

Hi guys, first of all I have to warn you that The App Fest was an idea of the telecom company Movistar, and this is always always always a bad premonition. But after reading about the speakers that were invited we decided to assist (accepting the consequences). Surprisingly it finally was a good decision. The event was presented by a theatrical improvisation group that prevented the occurrence of boring waits between the speeches, and that helped to create a very fun environment were speakers and public felt really comfortable.

The best part of The App Fest was undoubtedly the entrepreneurs part. It started very early (think about developers timetables…), but we arrived on time. Yeah! The beginning was pretty cool so we decided not to scape to have a coffee. Xavier Verdaguer told us about his experiences as a startup founder. He has created some technological inovation companies, the last one is Innovalley which develops smart clothes that interacts with smartphones and apps. In his speech he presented some of their smart clothes but we really enjoy his smart sweatshirt with which you can access the controls of your iPhone without touching the screen and reflect messages using LEDs. We also liked other products of Innovalley as the GPShoes, that connect your shoes with your phone and guide you. However, those things doesn’t look very cheap, and I have not any idea about the real possibilities of taking this information out of your smartphone to put it on your clothes… Probably it would be a cool clothing trend. Let see.

Enrique Tapias told us his experience with Playtales, a startup of interactive books for children and currently has 1.800.000 users in 119 countries. The most interesting part of his speech was focused in the beginnings when he talked about the difficulties to find funding for their persistence, their desire to continue in spite of adversity… Other important thing that he analyzed was the children app market, a very unexplored market if you compare it with other technological areas. He brought us a key concept to keep in mind when you try to start a project like this: “you´ll always will find competitors, and obviously your best opportunity is to enter soon to the market; if it is not possible, try it harder, make it better.

There was also a section devoted to online payment, it was the turn of Kuapay. Joaquin Ayuso told us about his beginnings as an initial team member’s of the Spanish social network Tuenti, and then he told us about his new project Kuapay. A virtual payment system based on the QR code technology which enters a in a very competitive market. He told us about their decision of using QR technology in stead of NFC arguing that the last one is not a general standard, and not all the smartphones are purchased whit the tools to read it. So the decided to develop their payment platform

Fran Perez spoke to us about your project Youzee a multimedia content distributor based on devices that complement each other in a simple and useful experience, but complex in design and development. They bet for simplifying actions as connecting your computer to the TV, synchronize the remote control with it, condensing all in an app for your smartphone. It was interesting to listen them talking about their “ecosystem“, a concept used before by other successful startups as AirBNB (we will talk about it in a future post). The problem is that their “ecosystem” doesn’t think very much a very close future, where TV and computers will be a single device; and the problem that they are solving with this “ecosystem” will not be a problem any more.

And here ends the part of entrepreneurs. Soon we will tell you more things about this app fest.

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Our last day at the Mobile World Congress

February 29th, 2012 | by | congress, mwc


vanadis developers at the mwc 3

The last day at the Mobile World Congress was mainly dedicated to talk with other developers, visit some stands of interesting companies we have shown and reviewing some of the devices we found interesting.

We were talking with the people of Malcom a company dedicated to help developers to monetize their apps.

Also we were talking with the CTO of Enough Software, a German company focused also on Mobile App Development who has published a guide for mobile app development and also some open source libraries like J2ME Polish for developing mobile applications.

At the Opera stand we were talking about their new focus on web apps on TV  with their Opera TV Store, a place for a collection of web applications optimized for being views on television screens and managed with a remote control, their Opera TV Emulator that developers can use to test the applications they can develop with the Opera Devices SDK. With all this, Opera makes an interesting approach for having rich Internet applications on the TV.

The people of Firefox were showing us their Boot to Gecko project (they presented it a partnership with Telefónica), where the idea is to create devices that boot directly to the gecko engine and the devices uses only rich HTML5 Apps, we were testing the calling app on a prototype and was working really smooth.

Next to them it was Ubuntu for Android, a bet from Canonical to use Ubuntu Desktop on Android multi core Devices.

We also talked with some of the engineers from LG and Nvidia to understand better how to develop mobile apps tacking the full potential of the Tegra 3 chip.

So those are some hints of all our meetings and the devices we discovered on our visit the Mobile Wolrd Congress, next year we will be there again to get all the news.

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Mobile World Congress Second day

February 28th, 2012 | by | congress, mwc


vanadis developers at the blackberry developers day

The second day at the Mobile World Congress for Vanadis was more focussed on the development side, after trying to get into the Samsung Developers Day just to see how they closed the door on our face, but we managed to enter on the BlackBerry Developers Day where we show the posibiliies of porting Android Gingerbread Apps to BlackBerry, some interesting tips on how to develop HTML5 mobile apps.

Also we show how it is going to be the LTE deployment for most of the operators, and learnt from Telefónica that they are already testing their 4G network in Spain.

Also we went to the W3C stand and to discover the what’s new on the standards for mobile web apps, there we met again Dominique Hazael-Massieux (@dontcallmedom) with whom we were talking during the W3C day in Spain and we got to know about the february update on the Standards for Web Applications on Mobile.

We also show the new Mobile phones from LG, the Optimus 4X HD the NVIDIA Tegra 3 (one of the stars of the MWC with many new devices using it) and it’s really nice screen (of course running Android Ice Cream Sandwich).

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Vanadis at the Mobile World Congress In Barcelona

February 27th, 2012 | by | congress, mwc


vanadis developers at the mwc 4

We wanted to be updated on the last technologies on mobile apps, see the new devices that will arrive on the market this year so we can get the most of all of them, so we went to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and to see ourselves what’s new on the mobile industry.

On the first day we went for a fast tour all around to see some of the star products of all the companies. In this tour we show that NFC is already here and most of the new devices are NFC enabled (most of the stands were using it to gather the information of the visitors).

Samsung came with 2 star products: the Samsung Galaxy Beam, a regular size mobile phone with an integrated pico projector, making it possible to project the screen of the device from the very own phone, something that looks very interesting for teaching or for a quick presentation… Any way the big star of their stand was the new Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1, the 10.1-inch tablet has a dual-core 1.4GHz mobile CPU, Android Ice Cream Sandwich, and a surface sensible to the pressure that with it’s stylus makes it a very powerful and versatile device.

Another interesting device was the ASUS PadFone that mixes a phone, a tablet and a netbook in one device in a very interesting combination, so you can “dock” the phone on the tablet and use the whole screen of the tablet (and it’s battery) and then dock the tablet on the keyboard to get a netbook.

Also we were checking the possibilities of the Nvidia Tegra 3, the core of many of the new phones and tablets in the MWC, a beast with 4 + 1 cores, 4 for the CPU demanding apps, and one extra one for the low consumption, so it can extend the battery duration.

Tomorrow we expect to have another interesting day mainly focused on the development part of the MWC, attending some developers sessions and talking with other developers.

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New vanadis’ development blog

February 6th, 2012 | by | vanadis


Welcome to the new Vanadis’ development blog. The mission of this blog is to share our knowledge and development skills, to post news, to offer help and solutions to common programming problems and to report anything that might be interesting for new developers. Our goal is to promote the exchange of ideas and to help to improve the new technology products making them more useful, more intuitive, more efficient and simpler.

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