First Dip into the Toronto Tech Industry: Bitmakers Meet Github

Yesterday at Github's pub night at the Rhino, I had the chance to meet people such as Phil Haack (@haacked) who really gave me a perspective on the advent of cloud computing. It catapulted productivity levels to new heights. Thanks to Github, Bitmakers and novice programmers worldwide now have it really, really easy. All we need to do now is “git init”, and the step toward saving your code in stages has begun. No need for chronic fear and paranoia that you might lose all your work with someone's pull at your power cord.

Github solves a real problem: productivity, efficiency, reliability. The generation of programmers will now stare blankly at the thought of a world without it. Github fills a void. As Alexis Madrigal said at his Behance 99U presentation, "Startups need to solve real problems again", but what really brings about innovation, change, and solutions?
Alexis Madrigal says in this video that there are two main obstacles in today's Silicon Valley startup industry. One: the lack of gender and ethnic diversity, which would provide a creative spur with different perspectives in tow. Two: the lack of focus on a diversity of marketplaces, rather than just providing social media services to one narrow demographic (24-year old white males, as he specifies). He makes a call to action for startups to "do something different for once" and solve real world problems.

[caption id="attachment_1571" align="aligncenter" width="525"]Chaitanya Shah and Jon Carr-Harris of Swish Labs Chaitanya Shah and Jon Carr-Harris of Swish Labs[/caption]

Toronto has an amazing startup community. And I'm proud to be a Bitmaker because two of the our alumni are proof that Toronto startups are challenging the status quo. Chaitanya Shah and Jon Carr-Harris founded Swish Labs ( because they wanted a way for people to track courier services in real time with location-based tracking. It's a service and hardware-oriented solution for a need for convenience and efficiency. It's an ambitious project and they are not just trying to make the next Facebook. Their main company culture is "hard work." As co-founders, their diversity in experience and backgrounds already make for a creative and constructive team.

As the weeks progress during my time at Bitmaker, I'm thrilled to meet more of the diverse, creative, hard-working bunch of fantastic people that make up the Toronto Tech industry. Look out, world. Toronto's already solving real problems.

by Stella Kim