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Morrisville Innovation Foundation News

Morrisville, NC – With the news that Carlotta Ungaro, Morrisville Chamber President, will be leaving the Triangle very soon, the board of the Morrisville Innovation Foundation has appointed Tech Tank Managing Partner Ian Henshaw as Interim Director to provide continuity of the Morrisville Innovation Foundation programs during the search for a new chamber president.

Programs of the Morrisville Innovation Foundation

  • Morrisville Start Up
  • Hottovation

Official News Release

Carlotta Ungaro will be leaving the Triangle at the end of this week for a new job in the Metro Atlanta area. Ian Henshaw will be stepping in to manage Morrisville Start Up until Ungaro’s replacement is named. Henshaw, a regular attendee to the Morrisville Start Up networking events, is the managing partner for Tech Tank and is the new managing director for the Cary Innovation Center. Henshaw’s affiliation with Tech Tank and the Cary Innovation Center make him the perfect interim staff for Morrisville Start Up!

Ungaro asks those that wish to stay connected, send her a message on Linked In and include in the note that you are part of Morrisville Start Up.

Previous Articles on the Morrisville Innovation Foundation

Google Fiber Coming to NC

Google Fiber Coming to NC

Cary, NC – Google announced on January 27, 2015 that Google fiber is coming to the RTP region and Charlotte. These are 2 of the 4 regions that Google has selected to expand their Gigabit Internet service.

In the RTP area the following towns/cities will be participating:

Recent studies have shown that availability of Gigabit Internet infrastructure has a huge impact on regional economic development and property values. Be patient as it will take a year or 2 but the results will be remarkable.

Google Gets Lots of Press!

Our apologies to those news outlets that are not mentioned.

Durham Announces Open Data

Durham Announces Open Data

Durham, NC – The City and County of Durham, NC announced today the hiring of Open Data Consultant, Jason Hare. Jason is the Director of Open Data at BaleFire Global and has been managing Raleigh’s award-winning open data initiative since it started in September 2012.

Open Data in Durham

The journey towards open data for Durham started in early 2013 or shortly before. [The writer attended one of the earliest meetings between Durham civic tech activists, Andy Krzmarzick and Colin Copeland (Code for Durham Brigade Captains) and Durham City and County IT employees in April 2013 at Bull City Burgers.] In Durham, the drive for open data started at a staff level and then rose to the elected official level as the program evolved. Much thought and effort has gone into developing the framework for a successful and sustainable open data program in Durham.

A unique characteristic of the the open data efforts for Durham is a partnership between the City and County. Both jurisdictions have released the same policy and action at the same time and will run a joint program for the benefit of the citizens, businesses and government of Durham. The effort is for a joint work plan and project framework building toward a projected website launch date of summer 2015.

Jason’s experience is important in helping us realize an Open Data effort that directly benefits our citizens and surrounding communities. Sustainability is paramount, and this will be enabled by doing everything we can to empower the communities through rich data and high usability. – Greg Marrow, Chief Information Officer, Information Services and Technology Department, Durham County

Who is Jason Hare?

Jason Hare is passionate about open data and has worked tirelessly in municipal, state, national and international efforts to open government data. From Raleigh to Newark, Colorado to North Carolina, to Puerto Rico, Ireland, Colombia and beyond, Jason has campaigned for data usability and citizen engagement with “data as infrastructure”. For the past two and a half years Jason Hare has been the Open Data Program Manager for the City of Raleigh, North Carolina as a consultant.

In 2013 Jason Hare was the primary organizer for NC DataPalooza. In 2013 he became an Open Data Institute (ODI) Member and founded an ODI Node in North Carolina. In 2014 he was made a member of the US Civil Society Organization’s Open Data Working Group for the Open Government Partnership Delegation. He has been interviewed and cited dozens of times for his philosophy on what open data means and the direction open data will go. Primary interests include user experience design, data driven design, open data, open data advocacy, service oriented architecture, data analysis, government services as a platform, analytic-driven portal interface design, e-government acculturation, citizen engagement, open source platforms and government transparency.

Previous Articles on Durham Open Data or BaleFire Global

The Frontier at RTP

Welcome to Your Endless Frontier

Research Triangle, NC – Thursday, January 15, 2015 saw the launch of The Frontier at RTP Park Center. Hundreds were in attendance to see the new facility and hear about the promise of this huge new addition to the entrepreneurship and innovation efforts in North Carolina.

What is The Frontier?

The Frontier is a 142,000-square-foot building in the Park Center portion of RTP. It is a mix of offices, co-working spaces and free meeting areas.

The Frontier is designed to create a collaborative “open innovation” environment – Bob Geolas, President and CEO of the Research Triangle Foundation

With the opening of the Frontier, RTP begins the development of the higher density mixed-use regions of the park to make sure RTP is ready for the next 50 years. This is reported to be the largest innovation center in the country!

RTP was created to belong to all the citizens of North Carolina and we now have a new hub for entrepreneurship and innovation in North Carolina.

This is just the beginning of what’s to come at Park Center, and it’s the community’s to use long after today is over. Come back any time!


Here are some pictures from the event which was followed by the acclaimed RTP180 series talks:

The Frontier at RTP Park Center

The Frontier at RTP Park Center

150115 Frontier 4

RTP180 at The Frontier at RTP Park Center

Appy Hour - A DOit Apps Event - From Lenovo

Appy Hour – by Lenovo

Morrisville, NC – A new tech event has come to our attention: Appy Hour – A DOit Apps Event – by Lenovo. The event will be in a week on Wednesday, January 21, 2015 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, so don’t delay adding this to your calendar!

What is Appy Hour?

Tantalyzing technology. Incredible networking. Brilliant speakers. Tasty food. Amazing apps. And cold, craft beer on tap.

We’ve assembled a line-up of some of our region’s most brilliant scientists, developers and thinkers.

Get a taste for some of the coolest applications in the area.

The team of Erin Monday and Will Hardison will be the co-emcees for this event. If you have seen them at the RTP180 events, you will want to go for their performance alone!

Appy Hour Details

  • What? Appy Hour – A DOit Apps Event – by Lenovo
  • Where? Lenovo Building 8, 8001 Development Drive, Morrisville, NC 27560
  • When? Wednesday, January 21, 2015 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM (EST) [You’re invited to pop in and browse right after work (5:00-6:00)]
  • Why? Tantalyzing technology. Incredible networking. Brilliant speakers. Tasty food. Amazing apps. And cold, craft beer on tap.
  • Appy Hour Registration Site
Cary CoWorking Meetup

Cary Coworking

Cary, NC – A new initiative of the Cary Innovation Center is to develop an authentic Cary coworking community in downtown Cary.

What is Coworking?

Coworking has developed over the past decade as a place for freelancers, remote workers and independents to work. Typically coworking facilities are located in walkable urban environments. Examples of coworking facilities in the Triangle are Bull City Coworking and American Underground both located in Durham and HQ Raleigh.

Building a successful vibrant coworking community is not easy and depends on the habits of local workers, the facility and the location. Technology Tank has been working on developing a coworking model for suburban locations and has been working on the moderately successful Oakhaven Coworking project for over a year, but location and facility were definitely an issue for Oakhaven Coworking.

Developing Cary Coworking

As was made abundantly clear by different coworking thought leaders at the WorkShift 2014 conference in Durham, building the community first and then finding a suitable facility is the most successful way of developing a facility to support those people that want to cowork. One of the biggest reasons for people wanting to cowork is that they are tired of being lonely working from home. A coworking facility provides a good working location without the distractions of a coffee shop or a library. A coworking community also provides a place for people to associate professionally to find advice or assistance from someone with needed skills or expertise. Please note that a coworking community is not a “networking group” so if that is what you are looking for you need to look at other groups more suited for networking!

With the move of the Technology Tank offices to the Cary Innovation Center, we are now working to develop a coworking facility in downtown Cary by first finding the community. We will be holding several “jelles” at the Cary Innovation Center starting in late January 2015. A coworking jelly is a meetup for potential coworkers to see if they like working together. For more information, or to get involved please join the Cary Coworking Meetup Group

Gather Coworking

Please also know that there is an existing coworking facility in downtown Cary – Gather. We don’t see our effort as competition, only strengthening the coworking community in Cary. If you have the chance please check out the Gather coworking opportunity and if that is what you are looking for, please join their community!

Cary Innovation Center

Cary Innovation Center

Cary, NC – Cary Innovation Center located at the Olde Cary Commons in Cary is now under management of Technology Tank. Look for more News very soon.

Follow us on our new Twitter @CaryInnovCtr to find out what is going on in Cary for entrepreneurship and innovation.

What will we be doing you ask? Oh, the normal stuff like hosting networking events connecting awesome people, developing a thriving Co-Working community, supporting budding super-successful entrepreneurs…


What do you think we should be doing? How can we best serve you? Let us know by contacting Ian Henshaw or commenting on this post. Thank you in advance.

2014 Top Ten Image

Tech Tank Top 10 for 2014

Cary, NC – 2014 was a good year for Technology activity in NC and the Triangle. The pages and regular features from Technology Tank that you found most helpful were our listing of Tech Meetup Groups in the Triangle and Charlotte, the monthly lists of Upcoming Tech Events and our Tech Calendar. [Note, please contact us if you find any errors or omissions on our Tech Meetup Group lists.]

Tech Tank Top 10 Articles

Here are the Top 10 Tech Tank articles based on your views:

  1. Hortonworks launches in Durham. Tech Tank interview with with Barry Duplantis, Hortonworks new Vice President of Customer Success to discuss his move to Hortonworks and the decision to launch operations in the Triangle.
  2. Raleigh – Emerging Tech Hub. Raleigh included in a TransferWise blog list of the 8 emerging tech hubs.
  3. Oakhaven Coworking. A project of Tech Tank, Oakhaven Coworking follows the success of American Underground, HQ Raleigh and others by bringing a coworking space to suburban Cary.
  4. How Libya’s Election Process is Better than the United States’s. NC based Caktus Group developed the technology that registered 1.5 million voters for Libya’s June 25th elections.
  5. Triangle Open Data Day Recap. We were told that Triangle Open Data Day was the biggest Open Data event in the world!
  6. Morrisville StartUp Networking. The Morrisville Innovation Foundation periodic networking event.
  7. Triangle Open Data Day. An initiative of Tech Tank, Triangle Open Data Day unites developers, data analysts, civic leaders, students and activists in a weekend of learning, liberating data and building applications to display useful information.
  8. Code for America Brigade. The idea behind Code for America (CfA) is “hacking for public good” – developing civic apps that can be used across municipalities in America.
  9. LIVES – Open Data Standard. Wake County is one of four early adopters of the LIVES data standard – an open data standard which allows municipalities to publish restaurant inspection information that can be consumed by apps like Yelp.
  10. The Open Data Institute Comes to NC. The Open Data Institute founded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee has a node in North Carolina – the Open Data Institute of North Carolina (ODI NC).

Picture from iabusa under Creative Commons

Hortonworks launches in Durham

Hortonworks launches in Durham

Durham, NC – Over the past few weeks, Hortonworks has quietly moved into Durham’s Bull City Coworking and is rapidly ramping up their operations. With a growing user base and $248 million in outside investment, Hortonworks is a leading commercial vendor of Apache Hadoop, the preeminent open source platform for storing, managing and analyzing big data.

Hortonworks is deeply engaged with Hadoop’s open source ecosystem, and the move to launch East Coast operations in the region is a sign that the Triangle’s reputation as a nexus of open source technical talent continues to grow.

I recently sat down for a coffee at Parker & Otis with Barry Duplantis, Hortonworks new Vice President of Customer Success to discuss his move to Hortonworks and the decision to launch operations in the Triangle.

The Triangle is the Right Place

In looking to place an Eastern US operation, Hortonworks looked at Austin, Boston and all the usual tech hubs. When they brought on local tech veteran, Barry Duplantis, signs started pointing to the Triangle as the next logical step. Duplantis’ familiarity and connections with the rich talent pool of open source talent in the region cemented Hortonworks decision to locate here.

Over the past few weeks, Hortonworks has been quietly hiring. Attending the local Hadoop Users Group meetings (TriHUG) and passing the word through the Open Source community has already allowed Hortonworks to expand well beyond their original target of 6 employees.

Duplantis’ team has now filled 16 out of 25 positions projected for their short term needs. Impressed with the caliber of talent that the Triangle team is bringing to the organization, Hortonworks is expanding the Triangle location scope to include positions in support, legal, IT and sales.

Triangle Ecosystem Support

A long-time resident of the Triangle, Duplantis has worked at Red Hat, Opsware and most recently for Eucalyptus Systems. Eucalyptus had a team based at Bull City Coworking for over two years, where Barry and his colleagues worked alongside engineers from open source stalwarts like Mozilla, Canonical, Opscode/Chef, Jackson River and several others.

Duplantis says that Hortonworks will fit into the Triangle Open Source ecosystem well since they work with everyone on a partnership basis rather than being competitive. In addition, the local Hortonworks team plans to support the open source developer community, starting with their involvement with the TriHUG meetup group.

Great Potential

Hortonworks is the most interesting company that I have been involved with since my days at Red Hat.

There is great potential for Hortonworks in the Triangle. An East Coast presence brings Hortonworks closer to their regional customers and partners, the big data field is “an incredible growth area” and Barry knows he will be able to find the talent that Hortonworks needs here in the Triangle.

Related Reading

Picture from Flickr by James Willamor

Restrictive Data License Picture

We Need a New Data License

Cary, NC – I am in Ireland for the Open Government Partnership (OGP) European Summit. Today as I was attending the Civil Society Day that precedes the summit and was listening to people talking about privacy issues, something crystallized in my mind that had been percolating for a while – we need a new data license.

As the CEO for the Open Data Institute node in North Carolina, our mission is to evangelize open and unfettered access to data, more specifically Open Data. Open Data is defined as data that is machine readable in a non-proprietary format, is easy to access, use and reuse without license at no cost to the user. Open Data does not contain any personally identifiable information (PII), confidential information or information of a security nature.

Personal Data and Privacy Concerns

But what about all this government data (and other data) that is available when requested as a public record via something like a FOIA request? This data can and does contain PII in many cases. How do we protect people from the release of this information in bulk? A good example of this sort of problem is the “Westchester Gun Map” that was published soon after the tragedy at Sandy Hook in the states. The PII in the gun registry was a public record, but the release of this information in bulk created so many unintended consequences and violations of privacy!

Proposed New Data License

Here is the solution that I am thinking of. It is not perfect and will need much input before it is ready to be finalized and applied.

We need a restricted data license for public records that include PII. The license will state that the receiver of the records can perform analysis on the data and can publish aggregated or anonymized information from the data, but cannot release the original data set to any other people. The receiver of the data set is liable for any harm caused by the release of the copy of the data set they have received. Also if the PII data is used to approve or deny service of any kind to any person, the provider of that service is required to disclose the PII data they used in their decision to that person.

This restricted data license would go a long way to easing the privacy concerns people have about the use and misuse of their personal information. The license may even solve the problem completely.

The Open Data Institute is the best organization to manage development of and certify the proper use of this envisioned new data license. Implementation of the license will need to be as a legislative action in all countries so that the license can be codified into law and become a sustainable part of our protection of privacy.

What do you think?

What do you think? We will be actively working on this new restricted data license at the open Data Institute of North Carolina and indeed also at the Open Data Institute. Let your voice be heard.

Ian Henshaw
The Open Data Institute of North Carolina

This article was originally published on the blog of the Open Data Institute of North Carolina on May 8, 2014.

Picture by Open

Previous Articles about the ODI North Carolina