Author Archive

Push Strength

Questions:

1 – What is the target audience for your product?

2 – How are you adapting your social media presence to it?

3 – Do you think it would be able to release your main product without the crowd funding system?

Visit:

When visiting Push, I had the opportunity to meet Mike Lovas and Chang Baek. Lovas explained that Push is a Toronto-based, design-centric sports technology company. Their main product is a wearable device for sport training. They work with professional athletes and their coaches to track and analyze their training in the gym to ultimately improve their performance on the field. They are also expanding their reach into healthcare, building relationships with academia to study the effects of visual feedback during movement-based rehabilitation on a variety of conditions.

Reflexion:

Although Push is a small and young company, it is impressive to see them working for so many big teams, for example, teams part of the NHL, NBA, NFL, etc. Also, they do not limit themselves working only in Toronto, they have clients even outside of Canada. One interesting thing about their device is that it is connected via bluetooth to a smartphone, which is something very present in people’s lives, so the client should not have problems using their app. Another interesting point is that the trainer can communicate and make a new program for the athlete even when they are not in the same place. This concept of not seeing distance as a problem, seems to work very well for the company. I feel like they are slowly reaching out for the world without having to leave Toronto.

Upverter

Questions

1 – Your company seems to be conceived in a very spontaneous way, what were the greatest bureaucratic issues you faced?

2 – Did you ever face any issues related to the space or location of your company?

3 – Do you have interest in expanding the focus of the company to other softwares or services?

 

Visit

At first, when our group arrived at Upverter Headquarters, it looked like a regular residential house. But, only after going downstair to the meeting room, we noticed that it was, indeed, their home. The fact that the team do not live there (at least not currently) doesn’t change the “home sweet home” feeling or the warm greetings we received. We gathered just like guests or old friends who came to drink and chat about how the company was doing.

We were guided mainly by Michael Woolworth and Adam Gravitis. They greeted us and talked a little bit about their past, how they went to University together and, after being in the “real world”, how they didn’t like their jobs. Their main focus was to make a better software, that came from a personal necessity in their old jobs. So, not liking to work for someone else, they decided to quit their current job and brainstorm ideas to what they could do next. The result was Upverter – an online, cheaper, better and accessible software. The company started around 4, 5 years ago and now they build CAD Software, circuit design software for browser, using their past experiences with software and hardware development.

Reflection

With a long time friendship as core of the business, they are a young company working on a promising product, different from any competitor in the market. Although I couldn’t see myself working with the kind of service they provide, Upverter is definitely a model to be followed. In my opinion, their informality combined with responsibility is one of the aspects I would like to see more in the industry.

Xpace

Questions

1 – Who can use the place to show their artwork?

2 – Are there any limitations for types of work to be exposed?

3 – What are the opportunities for OCAD students?

Visit

When our group arrived at Xpace Cultural Centre, located on 303 Lansdowne Avenue, we were received by Emily Gove (Director) & Adrienne Crossman (Programming Coordinator).

They explained to us that Xpace is supported by the OCAD Student Union and it helps new artists to expose their work. Emily told us that all OCAD students are member of the Xpace and Adrienne elaborated saying that it is as a bridge between being a student and being a professional artist. Their main program is the exhibition program, with four spaces available for single artists or collaborations. One of the spaces is unique due the fact that it is next to the main window at the entrance. This way, the artwork can be seen from a specific angle, also be exposed 24/7. At the end, they told us that videos of the expositions are available on their website along with an explanation of the works.

Reflection

The Xpace seems like a very interesting and supportive place for emerging artists. It is a great community to start exposing artworks, considering that an opportunity like this is not easy to find in the creative world. They are not limited only in regular and traditional art, but are opened to any kind of creative projects. It is a fantastic opportunity for OCAD students, but I believe is it not well advertised and many students are not aware of it.

 

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