Hey everyone, wanted to give you an update on my recent travels to Israel with the Red Hat Innovate program. Red Hat created the innovate program to help startups do more of what they already do - use open source tools to build their business. The decision to pilot the program in Israel was made because of the high rate of entrepreneurship and start-up culture. Red Hat has offices in R'annana but we worked out of the offices our good friends at Matrix. We also spent time at Mobile Monday, Israeli mobile summit, Garage geeks, and a Gemini OpenSource event, which would not have been possible with all the hard work from Levi Shapiro.
Let's start with some of the great startups we are starting to work with. We met with:
Cloudyn - http://www.cloudyn.com/: They actually help you tune your cloud resources. What they are helping you achieve is the most efficient use of your money given the amount of resources you want to provision.
BlazeMeter - http://blazemeter.com/: Here is a company who helps you leverage the cloud to load test your service. Not only do they have on demand servers to generate load, but they also have plugins for JMeter and Drupal.
Practitest - http://www.practitest.com/: Bringing the idea of SaaS and Team Coordination to your QA team is Practitest. While they don't actually run your test, they give you an easy and economical way to coordinate and track your QA efforts.
White Source - http://www.whitesourcesoftware.com/: Does your company use a lot of FOSS libraries and you want to keep track of who is using what - then White Source is right up your alley. It's software as a service for automated scanning of your software's reliance on different FOSS libraries. If you are hoping to be the lucky recipient of a "due diligence" period and you use FOSS libraries, then it's worth a look.
Mobile Monday Tel Aviv:
I have been to Mobile Monday in Silicon Valley several times but it was great to get a chance to attend the one in Tel Aviv. Since it was their 4th anniversary there was a huge turnout and the bar was packed. I got a chance to meet a awesome group of people. There were smart and witty students coming to learn more about the tech scene, a talk by Travemark on using OSM and doing smart bus passenger data algorithms, and great game developers. There were also a lot of people in town because the next day was the Israeli Mobile Summit.
Israeli Mobile Summit:
It was a great one day show - with two excellent tracks. The organizers did a great thing by choosing to have the event in a movie theater. We had the opening session in the big theater and then had two separate tracks the whole day. One track was business focused while the other was a game/technical track. I got the chance to speak to game developers how they can get their company site and web services up and running in 10 minutes. They were a great crowd and much shwag was thrown.
There were exhibitors in the lobby of the theater, ranging from startup incubators, to Telefonica, to award winning game developers. Everyone was incredible social with a lot of discussion around development and monetization.
In one of the industrial area of Tel Aviv you find a gritty building near industrial printing presses and automotive garages is the home of the Garage Geeks. It is very similar to some of the cooler "maker" places in the US. There are old electronics and mechanical pieces all over the place and plenty of semi-functional androids that used to play music or create laser shows with their eyes. The crowd was really eclectic and interesting. They also have this tradition of having speakers write their name on the walls so if you swing by you will see my name is bright name orange highlighter.
I got to talk outside, at night, on a stage with work lights, and projected onto a brick wall - it was by far one of the most unique presentation locations. Everyone was standing or sitting in lawn chairs drinking beers and eating pizza, I kinda' felt like I was sitting around a camp fire telling a tale. This was by far the most technical questions I had my whole time in Israel. Thanks again to Leon for all his help at the event and for the tour of Tel Aviv.
Our final big event in Israel was at the Gemini Israel Venture offices in Herzliya. We started with some hor d'evoures and mingling in the lobby. Then we dove right into the an introductory talk by Dion about the future of open source, followed by Ryan King giving start-ups an introduction to the Red Hat Innovate program. For those that don't know, Innovate is in beta mode and it is offering advantages to start-ups who want to use Red Hat technology, expertise, and marketing to help turbo charge their application. I then followed by bringing up both WordPress and a Python Web Service on OpenShift in less than 15 minutes.
It was a great, not to mention full, week in Israel. It was also a great validation week for all the work OpenShift is doing to make life better developers and entrepreneurs. Every time I explained PaaS to some new developer, showed them how easy OpenShift was, and how it was also open source - you could just see their faces light up. It seems like the knowledge of PaaS and it's use in Israel is just beginning. I hope my trip did at least a little to help build the community.
Thanks again to Ari at Matrix, the Red Hat Innovate program, and all the great developers I met on the trip. B'Shalom...