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Parametric New Year's Eve Horn

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:00 AM on December 31, 2009:

Parametric New Year's Even Horn

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The Parametric New Year's Horn image was created using Wolfram's Mathematica by Alex Edelman. You're invited to view all the parametric images on Handshake 2.0.

Twitter Talk

Posted by Z. Kelly Queijo at 6:00 AM on December 28, 2009:

Twitter is a twittastic way to connect with tweeple.

If you're twondering what all this means, you can expand your twitterspeak, then join the conversation and become a tweeting member of the Twitterverse.


Some of my tweeple displayed on Tweetdeck:

Z. Kelly Queijo's Tweeple on Tweetdeck


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Z. Kelly Queijo is the founder of SmartCollegeVisit and a frequent contributor to Handshake 2.0.

Scobleizing the Scobleizer

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:00 AM on December 26, 2009:

For me, the best parts of Robert Scoble's visit to Blacksburg, Virginia in 2009 were the photos and videos.

A few of my favs are Handshakeized, the video at VT KnowledgeWorks taken by Z. Kelly Queijo, and the video taken by Scoble of Click and Pledge founder Kami Razvan featured on building43.

But I definitely enjoyed the irony of this shot - Scoble scobleized the photographer and I scobleized 'em both.

Robert Scoble scobleizing a photographer in Blackburg, Virginia

Portal Handshake

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 7:00 AM on December 23, 2009:

Barry Welch, Anne Clelland, Kelly Queijo


Barry Welch, founder of Internet Databases and developer of FurnishWEB, a connectivity portal for the home furnishings industry, Anne Giles Clelland, founder of Handshake 2.0, a connector of people and portals, and Z. Kelly Queijo, founder of SmartCollegeVisit, a college visit portal with tools and resources for planning campus visit travel, share a Handshake 1.0.

Photo credit: Andrew Cohill

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It's still who you know!  You're invited to send us an image of you shaking hands with someone you know - a Handshake 1.0 - and we'll consider posting it in on Handshake 2.0.

Here are all the Handshake 1.0's on Handshake 2.0 and here's how to get your Handshake 1.0 on Handshake 2.0.

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Design NineInternet Databases and SmartCollegeVisit are clients of Handshake Media.

ZKQ's Favs of 2009

Posted by Z. Kelly Queijo at 6:15 AM on December 22, 2009:

If my count is accurate, in 2009, I have written more than 70 articles for Handshake 2.0. Looking back, I find myself drawn to certain articles and topics that I catalog as "favorites" of the year. An author rating her own work, choosing one post over another, is akin to choosing a favorite child. However, the selection criteria I've used are not based on what I think represents my most-loved creation. Instead, they're based on topics that held a great deal of appeal due to the process of creating the work.

Barry Welch, developer of FurnishWEB Most interesting company to write about: FurnishWEB

Of all the companies I covered, I wrote most often about FurnishWEB. FurnishWEB is a client of Handshake Media and, in my role as a freelance writer for Handshake 2.0, topics and people are often assigned to me to write about. Being a little on the geeky side, I found FurnishWEB, the software-as-a-service tool designed to serve the inventory management and order tracking needs of the furniture industry, to be a well-designed database with a solid user-interface. It's the kind of tool that when you see a demo, you come away thinking, "Doesn't every one in the furniture industry need this?" The answer, of course, is yes.

The other interesting aspect of covering the FurnishWEB story was getting to know founder Barry Welch, whom I dubbed The Sheriff of FurnishWEB.  He's an all-around great person to know who approaches life and business with enthusiasm, intelligence and kindness. I'm really thrilled to have the opportunity to help him tell the story of FurnishWEB.

Most fun to write: Selling Music Indie Style

Andrew Dickenson, a native of Christiansburg, Virginia and his wife June Suh, make beautiful music together, but their story does not end there. In fact, it's only beginning. The steps they've taken to market and promote their art online and through social media are impressive. Their story is a virtual "how to" with tools that include iTunes, Amazon, CD Baby, ThumbPlay, CafePress, and others. Writing their story was an education on how individual artists can reach a broad audience using tools and media available to all of us.

Favorite topic: Twitter

What can I say? Twitter is the velcro of social media. You never run out of ways to use it. (characters: 77)

Favorite interview: Aneesh Chopra, then Virginia's Secretary of Technology

On April 18, 2009, Chopra was appointed by President Obama as the first federal Chief Technology Officer, but when I spoke with him, he held the position of Secretary of Technology for the Commonwealth of Virginia. The fact that he returned my call, answered my email, and was willing to take the time to talk about opportunities for entrepreneurs to launch a business anywhere in Virginia, made government seem much more people-centric than I thought it could be.

I end the year as one of those people who launched a business in Virginia, confident that there is a terrific community of people and tools to learn about - and from - that will support and guide me in 2010.

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Z. Kelly Queijo is the founder of SmartCollegeVisit and a frequent contributor to Handshake 2.0.

Time Banks Celebrate Our Very Best

Posted by Elizabeth Parsons at 6:00 AM on December 22, 2009:

Imagining the possibilities of Time Banks I have recently discovered something created by my fellow homo sapiens that promotes and celebrates our very best.

Time Banks may just be the coolest concept ever, right up there with microcredit and universal human rights. It leverages the stunning potential of social networking - which is, of course, human-to-human connection and the infinite opportunities that emerge as a result - while breaking down the virtual wall that, at the same time, can at once block true connection and community.

It’s a community exchange service that works like this. Connie, computer geek extraordinaire, registers online with her local Time Bank. Connie donates three hours to revive her neighbor’s ailing computer. Connie records it in the Time Bank online database, receiving, in return, three “Time Dollars” to spend as she pleases. Maybe she cashes in with a design-guru for help with a new logo. Or maybe she spends it on housekeeping, car repair, interior design, a hair cut or massage - all services provided by neighbors registered with Time Bank. Whoever works for Connie earns Time Dollars of her own, and can spend them with Anne the accountant, Bob the business coach, Mitch the mechanic, Wendy the wedding planner or Terrance the translator...and so on. It’s pretty simple.

“Yet it also has profound effects,” states Time Banks's site. “You get to know your neighbors and build an old-fashioned extended family of people who take care of each other. Time Banks are limited only by the imagination of their members.” 

There are hundreds of Time Banks all over the world. “It’s huge in London,” fellow Creative Connector and Time Bank-advocate, professional caterer and local food activist Nancy Maurelli told me recently. Getting “huge” in Southwest Virginia will require troops, troops with talent, the more the better. Count me in.

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Elizabeth Parsons is a seasoned editor, writer, and communications professional.  You can follow her on Twitter at @e_claire_p.

Video Yourself

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:08 AM on December 21, 2009:

Almost a year ago, for the VT KnowledgeWorks blog, Inside VT KnowledgeWorks, I wrote Google Yourself, a post inspired by advice from Seth Godin, and then about six weeks ago, Have You Googled Yourself Lately?

For 2010, I'm going to offer a different directive:  Video yourself.

According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index, "By 2013, the sum of all forms of video (TV, VoD, Internet video, and P2P) will exceed 90 percent of global consumer IP traffic."

In An Explosion of Video Content, we wrote:  "What does this mean for businesses who want to communicate and engage with customers and clients now and in the future?  Might be a good time to get on YouTube."

We got on YouTube. We have the Handshake 2.0 YouTube Channel and The Handshake Video and are offering video production services to our clients.

What I have learned from taking videos of myself and clients - all of us amateurs - is that in terms of social media authenticity and genuineness, we make a fatal mistake.

Shifty eyes.

In deep, thoughful, one-on-one conversation, it's natural for people to look away from their listeners as if searching parts of their brains for what they mean before they say it, then to look back into the eyes of the listener.

On film, that looking away looks as if we're not telling the truth.

When I submited an application for angel investor funding, for which a video was required, I took video after video of myself. In addition to recurrent flared nostrils from impassioned speaking, I noticed that, in my sincerest effort to look away and find just the right word, paradoxically, I looked insincere.

In business, a good handshake is accompanied by good eye contact.

The solution for me was to ask someone to film me.  Lindsey Eversole of VT KnowledgeWorks helped me with my angel investor application videoZ. Kelly Queijo took the video for my application to be a blogger for Murphy-Goode, and Jarred Foresman filmed this video for the blog I write for VT KnowledgeWorks.

As you can see, I haven't quite ditched the flared nostrils yet, but, after practice, I've got the eye contact down.  Whether you agree with what I'm saying or not, it's pretty clear that I mean what I say.

Video yourself. Get really comfortable looking straight into the camera and saying what you mean. The future of your business may depend upon it.

Snow Doesn't Stop Home-Based Businesses

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:03 AM on December 19, 2009:

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.

Although the phrase is associated with the United States Postal Service, it could well apply to small businesses located in southwest Virginia under a state of emergency from Governor Tim Kaine due to a winter storm.

Umbrella in the snow in Blacksburg, Virginia

According to a 2006 U.S. Census Report, half of all United States businesses are home-based. In addition, "self-employed individuals who have no paid employees operate three-fourths of U.S. businesses." Entrepreneur reports that the typical home-based business has been in operation more than ten years.

For those operating virtual businesses in snowbound homes? It can be just another day of work.

Connecting People in the RNR: "We've Got a Real Winner Here"

Posted by Handshake 2.0 at 6:46 AM on December 18, 2009:

Handshake 2.0 brings you edition #43 of Connecting People in the RNR with Stuart Mease.

Mease interviews Bev Fitzpatrick, Executive Director, Virginia Museum of Transportation, and Executive Council member, It's Time Virginia.

Here's a profile of Bev Fitzpatrick from Anderson and Associaties (.pdf).

"RNR" refers to the Roanoke and New River Valleys of Virginia.

Connecting People in the RNR
a video show by Stuart Mease for Handshake 2.0

The opinions expressed by Stuart Mease or by those he interviews are solely their own.  They are not necessarily shared by Handshake 2.0 or its clients, sponsors, or advertisers, or by Stuart Mease's employer.

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Stuart Mease is Recruiting Manager for Rackspace Email and Apps which sponsored the Rackspace Tech Showcase on Handshake 2.0.

Stuart writes the blog Connecting People.  You can connect with Stuart in myriad ways both off-line and online, including on Twitter @stuartmease.  Stuart Mease is an organizer of the Roanoke Creative Communities Leadership Project (CCLP) in Virginia.  You can follow the program on Twitter @roanokecreative. Stuart Mease was a finalist for the NCTC NewVa Leadership Award 2009.  

We consider Stuart Mease a thought leader and are honored he shares his views with Handshake 2.0.

Brazen Careerist's Top 50 Places to Work

Posted by Z. Kelly Queijo at 8:03 AM on December 17, 2009:

Flexibility, interesting work, and likable co-workers are cited by Penelope Trunk in the Brazen Careerist blog as the three most important criteria for Gen-Y when it comes to choosing where to work. Brazen Careerist is a career management resource for the next generation professionals.

The company partnered with PayScale to establish criteria for the first Brazen Careerist Top 50 Places to Work. While salary is always an important factor in the job selection process, it was not considered a key criteria for selection. With salary information now public and searchable by position and location, Trunk states in her blog that “the days when a company can screw you by underpaying you are over.” The Gen-Y population accepts this and, instead, turns its attention to workplace environment and corporate philosophy and culture as key criteria for employment. The companies that made the Brazen Careerist list employ a minimum of 2500 and come close to reaching a 50-50 gender balance. 

Here in the RNR (Roanoke and New River Valley regions), the larger employers come from manufacturing and education. As a region, we face the challenge of retaining and attracting the 10,000 -15,000 or so who graduate each spring from the area's rich selection of 2- and 4-year colleges and universities.

Jim Flowers, Director of VT Knowledge Works, suggests in Growing a Regional Economy - One Small Company at a Time that building an entrepreneurial region founded on 21st century technologies and market trends should be encouraged and supported. With 1/3 of all jobs being created by small companies with 20 employees or fewer, it's safe to say that in addition to salary, size probably won't matter to future Gen-Ys either - especially if the environment is friendly, flexible and interesting.

Next generation of college students at Radford University

The next generation of college graduates: prospective students attend Open House and tour Radford University.
Photo taken with camera loaned to blogger Z.Kelly Queijo by Olympus.


Related links:

What Does High-Tech Want?

81 Reasons to Connect

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Z. Kelly Queijo is the founder of SmartCollegeVisit and a frequent contributor to Handshake 2.0.