This is a repost from my old blog which will be discontinued from April 2016.

The term "Entrepreneur" has always been a curious thing for me. Have you ever met people calling themselves a CEO/CFO and leaving everything behind to work for one idea that they are passionate about? At Start-up Weekend Pittsburgh you will find plethora of such people. Through this blog I would like to share my experiences at Start-up Weekend Pittsburgh.

All I wanted to do at this event was to code for one such idea that I believed could change the world, although it sounds crazy to find one such idea but this is Start-up Weekend and there is no scarcity of such ideas here.

Organizers: I have been to several events before but the atmosphere at start-up weekend Pittsburgh was energetic, for me the main reason was organizing team. They were always joking around, screaming around, clapping around and mentoring around but important thing is they were always around. The three pillars:

Kit Mueller(Loud Guy)
Lee Ngo(Bruce Lee)
Jeremy Burton(Breaking Bad Guy)

The team was vibrant facilitating the teams from whiteboards to business advises. There was one more person who had nothing to do in Denver so sneaked into start-up weekend calling himself facilitator:
Jon Rossi (zach galifianakis)
Day 0: Pitch It.

First day people were supposed to pitch the ideas and others would vote. Top few teams will be in the competition based on the votes. The very idea of listening to totally new people(might even include random stalkers) and sharing their passion to give a shape to their million dollar idea in next 48 hours was crazy enough to invest on for me. I was hearing to the ideas of different people, there was this one idea which I am not revealing because remember it is a million dollar idea (:D). The app we called Harmonics has eventually made it to top 12 teams and competing in the start-up weekend. I ended up joining the team which included a teacher, magician of words, designer kid, stout musician and charming brain.  We briefly discussed our plan for the coming two days and ended up forming a good rapport.

Pitch of All Ideas:

Day 1: Plan It, Build It.

I reached alpha gear lab and there were two giant screens waiting for me, nothing gives happiness for a programmer than giant extended monitors thanks to josh. We stuck with our plans and divided the tasks among each other, mentors were giving pertinent advises which helped us in our short journey. There are important lessons that I would like to enlist here:
  • Firstly, validating your business idea is very important, to know that people are gonna buy your  app/device is cardinal.
  • Secondly, knowing the target audience is key. You can't sell RayBan glasses to a blind man. 
  • Thirdly, business model is non-trivial objective. B2B or B2C have a structure for bucks to flow. 
  • Lastly, networking is key in this world, surrounding experiences are the best lessons.
So keeping these thoughts in mind, we ended our day having a business model, primary prototype, validation through surveys and lots of laugh.

Day 2: Final Pitch.

Once the tricks are ready it was time for us to present our wizardry before a panel of judges. Not to forget an amazing magic show was organized to make us go stress-free into the final showdown. When it came to our turn the magician of words turned it on with all his expertise and we did well. Although we didn't make it to top three, it seemed so close. It all ended well with good insight on the notion of startups  and lots of experiences.

From Startup Weekend Pittsburgh, If not prize, I gained experience, I gained good friends and I gained passion. 

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