The final day of Disrupt SF has come to an end. Shaker, a spin-off of sorts of Half-Life but for the “real life interactions”, took the $50,000 prize. I hope they plummet into obscurity as quickly as possible. I enjoyed watching The Matrix trilogy, but never considered living in it. Shudder.
Anyhow, Shaker wasn’t either of my top two Battlefield contestants. I had my eyes on “infinite storage for everyone!” Bitcasa and “fresh farm produce for mere mortals like you and me!” Farmigo.
With Bitcasa, two of the panelists were investors in Dropbox if I can recall correctly (I’ll have to verify that later). During their Q&A session, there seemed to be a general apprehension as to the full potential of Bitcasa. Offering a product without any limits is one thing. Offering it at just $10 per month sounds almost ludricrous, but we drool in anticipation just thinking about it. As Arrington said (who is an investor via Crunchfund), “I’ll believe it when I try it for myself.” With over 50,000 signups in the first 48 hours according to CEO Tony Gauda, Bitcasa is the startup everyone wants to succeed, but are afraid may fail.
I love the idea behind Farmigo, which is based on something known as Community Supported Agriculture programs (CSA). CSA’s connect farmers directly with consumers, offering locally-grown produce to the community. This helps the farm earn more profits since they no longer have to go through any middleman just to sell their produce and also benefits the community by providing them with healthy, affordable food.
Farmigo uses the power of the Internet to connect local farms to their communities. People can create find locations in their area where they can order fresh produce from farmers. Unlike farmer’s markets, you must select a food subscription from the farmer, in which you agree to purchase a certain produce package(vegetables, meat, dairy) at regular intervals each week. The interesting thing about local pickups is that a certain number of people have to participate before the farm will actually show up to your area. This helps encourage people to reach out to their friends and family to join.
Well, there you have it. I’m keeping my ears open for Farmigo and Bitcasa over the next couple of weeks. I really hope they do well and show the panel of judges that they were wrong in picking Shaker. Speaking of Shaker…please, just go away.
Photo by Techcrunch