Making an impact in the 3rd most innovative region in the world

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If you remember, in early 2015 Barbara and Ryan decided that it was time to promote and launch a special event, where developers, designers, makers and people with business backgrounds could gather and spend some time together. Hack the City was born!

In less than 3 years Hack the City has become one of the most influential events of its kind in Switzerland, among HackZurich and the recently born BernHackt.

Hack the City is just one event among many others that help people with similar interests to meet in a friendly and joyful environment. The principle is to be creative and build something meaningful, that can have an inpact in solving real-world problems. In addition, the best ideas and projects are awarded with valuable prizes.
Moreover, also due to high demand, we added a series of speeches and round tables that could perfectly fit with this type of event. The 2017’s edition saw a list of great speakers and great mentors willing to share their stories with a non-tech audience. We all eagerly need to be informed by people working and being involved in the digital industry. We need to stay in touch with what’s coming next, what are the challenges and opportunities that the fast evolving technology brings to us.

Our goal is not to make a profit (although we need to cover our expenses), but to give back to a community made of amazing people. A community that it is steadily growing and demonstrating that we, in the Italian speaking part of Switzerland, are also able to compete nationally and internationally heads-up. Studies show that Ticino is third in these terms in Switzerland. And — just to remind you — Switzerland is one of the most competitive countries in the world since several years (if not the most competitive).

We’re happy that our efforts and passion, although built on very limited resources, are having an impact on our region and in the local digital industry. Probably this is the reason why the Canton of Ticino and its Office for the promotion of the economy supports Hack the City. In fact, from 2016, Hack the City is an event promoted within the Regional Innovation System Ticino (RIS) and supported by many important institutions.

WordPress 4.7 & React — A perfect marriage?

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On the 12th of April, 2017, during the Ticino’s FrontEnders monthly meeting hosted at DOS Group, Ryan introduced the audience to the experience we made in developing a complex and production-ready WordPress theme only in React (+ its must-have add-ons).

The WP Rest API made it to the core in WP 4.7, which finally lets us decouple our themes from PHP using whatever technology we want. In other words, we are now able to build a pure (almost), beautiful and feature-rich JavaScript theme and never have to look back to the legacy spaghetti-code that WordPress usually throws in.

The setup, the choices and certain minor hacks all contributed to obtain an amazing result. But with many pros, there where also several cons.
Find out more by having a look at the embedded slide deck.

Image courtesy by DOS Group

State councillor Vitta visits our office spaces

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Last week Mr. Christian Vitta, Canton of Ticino’s State Councillor and Director of the Department of Finances and Economy (DFE), came to visit the digital branch of Tecnopolo Ticino in Chiasso.

We, and other 5 companies headquartered on the two dedicated floors, had the opportunity to introduce our activities and services in a detailed fashion. We also had some dedicated time to tell him about our commitment towards entrepreneurship, technology and innovation, which are also the essential building blocks of the long term strategy carried out by the DFE. Read more on »

Plastical and its commitment to the startup scene

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In these last 2 years we positioned ourselves clearly as one of the few consultancies that deal with startups and innovation. We really believe that the potential of young talents, creative projects and endless hours of intensive work to make an idea happen are the real driver toward success.

We helped several startups and amazing entrepreneurs reach their goals and succeed. It’s our business and we’re paid for it.

But we also thought that, after such an intense work with and into the scene, it was time to give back. Read more on »

What it means being a TEDx speaker (for a day)

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When in January the Lugano’s TEDx team asked me to be a speaker for their second event hosted at the Franklin University I started to get nervous. Although honoured and pleased by this invitation, I was really concerned about the contents and how those could have a real impact on the audience.
I’m quite used to talk in public, so the main problem was to build a story which had the potential to: 1. engage the audience and 2. to come up with something worth spreading. Read more on »

Tech&Lunch events. Joining the local startup community

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Together with Fondazione Agire we’re hosting a series of events at the Tecnopolo Ticino. The next one will be awesome: we’re bringing MassChallenge, one of the biggest accelerator programs worldwide in Ticino open to all the local startups willing to experience 4 months in one of their locations: Boston, UK or Israel.

That’s why we are looking for the top Ticino Startups!

Startups in MassChallenge receive free resources and opportunities, including mentorship, office space, and access to a global network. Finalist startups will also compete for millions in non-dilutive cash awards: over $1.5 million in MassChallenge Boston and £500 thousand (~$760 thousand) in MassChallenge UK.

Info Session details
Date: March 20th 2015, 11:30 – 14:00
Location: Tecnopolo Ticino, Stabile Suglio, Auditorium, Via Cantonale 18, 6928 Manno
Guest speaker: Nick Balestra, founder and CEO Beyounic.

Attend for free!
Enjoy the Tech&Lunch event series at Tecnopolo Ticino.
Pizza, drinks and networking for people willing to share and learn from amazing entrepreneurs.

Register now: http://event.plastical.com

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The diary #013: 48 hours in one of the top accelerators in Europe.

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Nearbors pitch
A week ago we got an email from Louisa, COO of StartupBootcamp Berlin, telling us that we were one of the teams selected to pitch on the 27th of May in Berlin for the Smart transportation & Energy program happening next Fall.

StartupBootcamp is among the top accelerators in Europe (and rating really high worldwide), backed by amazing companies such as Bosch Global, Castrol, Cisco, EnBW, Here (Nokia), and Mercedes-Benz. We applied to SBC with our Nearbors project some weeks ago and we forgot about it. When we read the email we were enthusiastic, but also panicking! We had less than 4 days to book our stay in Berlin, get ready with the best pitch we could put together and do our best to be admitted in the program. Read more on »