Not techy enough and I'm frustrated
April 28, 2014 1:33 PM   Subscribe

I’m looking for advice on how to get techy oriented business idea going. I’m knowledgeable enough about tech and programming to know that what I likely need is beyond my current or near enough future capabilities. Details below.

So I’ve come up with a business idea I’d like to pursue further then the pen and paper sketch out phase. It’s centered around a non-game use of the Oculus Rift VR tech that supposed to be coming out with a consumer version early next year. I have experience with starting a couple of my own businesses before as well as numerous short and long term projects so the whole how to do a business in general not the issue. I also have a background in project management. The problem I’m running into is pretty much a complete lack of networking in the tech field. With previous projects I’ve always known the right people to contact for information or known people that I can work with that have the necessary skills. I was already plugged into the right sort of networks. I’m pretty frustrated right now because my usual, ‘I know where and who to go to and a how to get this to work’ fu is failing me big time. Arrgh.

My main question is about how to go about finding the right sort of people without necessarily just putting out an ad. Ideally I would find 1 or 2 people with the necessary skills to work in more of a partnership. This is how I’ve done always done things before. The other option is to just hire what I need to at least get to the finding more money phase but I would need some sort of tech consultant to discuss feasibility and help with planning. (Do these sorts of consultants exist?) I’m currently at the beginning stages of learning to code so I’m not a complete tech newb but what I want to do is beyond me right now and I know I won’t be able to learn enough any time soon to do this all myself.

I’m near to Toronto so I can go physically to places and/ or events to meet people. I’m also open to connecting with people online but could use some insight into good places to check out. I’m a bit hesitant to just post my whole idea and plan somewhere outright and say ‘okay anyone in?’ but if it comes down to having no choice to I would.

We’re not talking a ‘start-up’ type situation, or at least not something that is looking at needing a jajillion dollars but as with any starting business money is tight right off. It would be a here’s a basic demo, here’s how it works, here’s the marketing etc, need a bit of starting capital (mostly for hardware) type situation.

So I guess to narrow it down even more, any advice on how to connect with people that may like my ‘big idea’ to the same sort of extent I like my ‘big idea’ or where can I at least get help figuring out exactly what and who I would need to do it. Oh and as far as I can figure the skills I’m looking at needing are front and back end web development and possibly some proprietary programming around the Rift and general digital video playing. I suppose it’s too much to wish for an answer of ‘Oh go down to the coffee shop on 5th street. All those types of people hang out there’. I can dream I guess.
posted by Jalliah to Technology (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'd go to one Toronto's hackerspaces.

That's pretty much exactly what they're for.
posted by overhauser at 1:53 PM on April 28, 2014 [1 favorite]

I was going to suggest the same thing; also, see if you can attend any computer school events to get to network with any of the students. (Sheridan has a new programme in game design I think?)

Last year's gamercamp in Toronto was really fun and would have been a great place to meet the type of people you are looking for. I don't know if there is a new one coming up though.
posted by saucysault at 1:58 PM on April 28, 2014

Toronto has a very vibrant indie game developer scene, including plenty of people who have developed for the Oculus Rift (there was even a game jam focused on the Oculus Rift last year -- perhaps you could contact the organizers?).

Here are some other places to meet developers and game people in Toronto:

Games With Friends
posted by beatrice rex at 2:22 PM on April 28, 2014

Thanks so much. These places and events seem exactly what I'm looking for.

Looks like there is another Gamercamp in October as well. I'm going to attend for sure. Looks like great fun on top of networking possibilities.
posted by Jalliah at 3:07 AM on April 29, 2014

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