A few weeks ago, I huddled with Matt and Eddie to chat about how we could do some whizzy-social-2.0 stuff for OpenWorld this year.
The outcome was a lot of “this would be cool” and “just don’t have the time”. Well, Matt made some time anyway, and he’s soft-released Collok.com to help you manage your OpenWorld schedule.
I say soft-launched because he has a list of features that aren’t done, and he says the code isn’t there yet. I beg to differ on the latter point; I entered my schedule into Collok yesterday and didn’t see any bugs. Collok supports csv import if you’ve built your schedule using the Schedule Builder.
Apparently employees are not eligible to use the Schedule Builder, so I entered my alerts by hand. Collok stores my schedule for the week and can send me reminders for each alert by SMS, Twitter and email. Pretty handy when you’re on the go, hoofing around the massive conference that is OpenWorld.
Collok is tightly focused on your schedule, at least for OpenWorld. Matt has a list of plans to make it more social, but he has a day job. Here’s his list of features to build:
- Sessions organized into tracks
- Presenters can claim their sessions
- People can say they are attending the session
- A twitter like stream for each session
- People can “check in” to a session via twitter DM and then anything they dm collok for the length of the session automatically gets added to the session’s timeline
- An air app that displays all the incoming msgs on the presenters screen during the session
- Brightkite and FireEagle to push/pull current location
- Create your own sessions / event i.e. unconference and after parties (private and public)
- A map of the events and after parties
- A map of the attendees and their current locations
I like the narrow execution, versus a big splat with a bunch of features that aren’t fully baked yet. If Matt can excute his list of enhancements, Collok will be a powerful social tool for conferences by the time next year’s season begins.
So, if you’re attending OpenWorld, test out Collok as your personal conference assistant. Be gentle though, it’s pre-beta now, and Matt has a duties at OpenWorld to handle too. Of course, if you like it, find him at the conference and pat him on the back.
Maybe he’ll tell you what the significance of the name is. I’d like to know.
Congrats, Matt, on the launch! Guess I know what you'll be doing next week since I know you can't stand having things out there that aren't ready :). Luckily, I'm pretty sure the bars have wireless in SF.
Thanks guys, but as you know, I'm a bit of a perfectionist and just ran out of time. My day job has had me working overtime. I think the alert system will help out a ton. I know I've always pulling out my laptop trying to figure out where I'm heading next.
I'll probably be hanging out in the OTN Lounge / Unconference area during the day and cranking out code. If anyone wants to help out I'd be more than happy to open up the source repository. Its written on MySql and Rails with a bunch of off the shelf gems and plugins.
I'm hoping to add Open Microblogging (http://openmicroblogging.org/) support to the site so people can connect up their air apps to see whats happening. I think this will be the first Rails app that supports the standard.
If anyone has any questions or problems drop me an email at email@example.com or collok.uservoice.com .
Oh and I just found my first bug, its fixed 😉 Hopefully no one noticed.
We should sit down with Rich and Raimonds, the two Rails guys I know in the Oracle sphere.
What about a hackathon session at the Unconference? You could book a couple sessions for anyone interested. Let me know, since I'll be onsite as soon as I arrive to move my geek-speak session.
Or you could do a hackathon after hours somewhere cozy with wi-fi?
Will definitely take a look. As an aside, the regular OW schedule builder app is absolutely horrendous – given all the great tools and smart UI people that Oracle has, it's a real shame. I know it's outsourced, but I bet tons of big-5 or isv partners would have actually payed oracle to let them write them a much better app, on the Oracle stack, provided they could plaster their logo all over it.
Oracle had a captive audience of 40,000+ attendees, what a way to MISS a chance to excite them with a real hands-on experience
I think this is great fodder for Oracle Listens 🙂 I haven't been able to use the Schedule Builder, but I've heard similar complaints.
Maybe next year, after all, the OOW social experience was through a third party in 06, 07, and this year it's through Mix. These things take time.
BTW, during OOW, the Collok reminders helped keep me on track. That's a chore considering my easy ability to get sidetracked by shiny objects, etc. The SMS messages from schedule builder were worthless and kept sending me URLs to visit which was not welcome (you've seen my circa-1995 phone, right?).
Anyway, thanks for getting the site live before the big event–it helped me and I look forward to future versions!
Agreed, the SMS reminders were very timely, especially when I got caught up in a conversation between sessions.
Glad I could help guys, for now work has stopped on it due to a lack of time. But know knows maybe Marius can hire me to replace the schedule builder next year 😉
Time is always an issue, so I like the open source approach, which I think you started already. After a year of feature development and a few conferences for testing (ODTUG, Collaborate), by next OOW, Collok could be pretty awesome.
A good story too, since it would be a community built app.
I agree with Jake, Collok would be a pretty good story, if we can't help improve our current offering. And Matt, your hired!