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Since next week looks a little empty, I decided to do a 2 week radar posting:

NetSquared DC March Meetup [link]
When: Tuesday, March 18th 7pm – 9pm (they usually have a large crowd so get there promptly at 7pm)

Where: Affinity Lab
2451 18th Street NW 2nd Floor(above The Diner in Adams Morgan) [map]

Details: Learn about APIs (application programming interface) with Greg Elin and Josh Ruihley from Sunlight Labs.

Washington Blogger February Meetup [link]

When: Wednesday, March 19th 7pm – 9pm

Where: Regional Food and Drink
810 7th St. NW
Washington , DC 20001
202-289-2030
[map]

Details: Local Washington area bloggers meetup for good times and good conversation.

Digital Democracy Panel Discussion:Politics, Privacy & Creativity in the Age of the Internet

When: Wednesday, March 26th 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Where: National Press Club
529 14th Street NW, 13th Floor
Washington, DC 20045
(Metro Center Metro Stop)

Details: A cocktail reception and panel discussion where expert alumni and professors from the Boston University community will examine the implications of digital media on political communication, news reporting and expression of opinion during the 2008 campaign season. (This last one might not be open to the general public, a former colleague of mine is a BU graduate and invited me to come.)

Most likely I will only attend the last event since this week is getting kind of busy for me. But I highly encourage those of you in the Washington DC area to attend these events! It is a great way to meet folks who are passionate about social media and plus you never know what ideas/connections can spark!

One of the most pressing public health issues of our times, has been the scourge of HIV/AIDS. The disease – which began to gain notoriety and attention throughout the 1980’s – has crippled the lives of many Americans, most often bringing unwelcome stigmas and lifelong medication treatments.

A particular class I took in college (as a matter of fact, it was the class that brought me from engineering to the public health world), was focused on disease prevention. Among diseases like diabetes and tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS was usually at the top of the list of diseases that needed focused attention to cure/eradicate. Now that we are in the 2000s and in an age of advanced communication, many of the details related to the disease itself – as well as cutting edge research working toward a cure – can be effectively disseminated to the lay audience. For far too long, the darker side of word of mouth communication allowed for incorrect insight into the world of those living with the disease. Now we can change that…

A good example of technology (more specifically the social web) being used to inform the public is the recently launched AIDS.gov blog. AIDS. gov is the official website of the Department of Health and Human Services‘ communication on the HIV/AIDS issue. Their willingness to delve into the social media aspect of communication should be applauded in itself. This is what I’m talking about when I mention thoughts on how social technology can help the health world. Health is about people. How people live, eat and interact…and also learn. The site does a great job of introducing people to the disease and the blog seems to facilitate a way for people to interact with how the government is handling the issue.

This is of course a vulnerable position as there is always the tendency for the public to not always trust government leadership. This is a great step in the right direction. The HIV/AIDS dilemma is a big one – a global one. And from my point of view, problems can be solved faster by having more people truly understand what is at stake.

Bottom line is, as we continue to become more connected, more vocal about what is going on in our lives, it’s important to not only become knowledgeable about these issues but also to provide feedback regarding solutions. Especially in the realm of health – it’s not about what the government can provide, it’s not about a “professional” tackling the problem for us. Our better health future relies on you – it relies on me – to make forward progress. Get educated about health issues that matter to you…and then give back.

blogpotomac-rgbweb-thumb.jpgAfter finally getting out to the great social media events in the Washington DC area, I have become increasingly more “connected” with the people and ideas that are surely blooming in the city. I caught myself jotting down upcoming events and came across one that I am definitely looking forward to attending.

Although the official website is still under construction, registration for the BlogPotomac event is open to the general public! Chairman of the event, Geoff Livingston lets us know that “BlogPotomac is this year’s premiere social media marketing event for greater Washington DC. Attendees can expect a one-day event with nationally renown speakers and advanced discussion of best social media marketing practices.” The event is to be held on June 13 at the State Theater, in Falls Church, VA.

Speakers lined up for the event include:

If you’re in the DC area and want to get some great information on what’s going on in the digital marketplace, consider attending!

Updates to come as more details roll in.

I’m sure many of you have already come across this video but I thought I would put it up here just in case.

Common Craft has become well known for their videos that easily explain technological concepts. Twitter has just been added to their list. Hope you all can enjoy and now fully understand why I love this awesome application.

Yeah…I know, I know. If you’re like me you are moping around because you are where you are instead of being in Austin, TX hanging out with other bloggers and social media mavens at SXSW, the big event for film, music and social media. Well hopefully I can deliver a piece of happiness!

It seems like Mashable.com (shout out to Adam Hirsch from last week’s MashMeet DC!) is trying to include us outsiders by giving us the opportunity to grab some SXSW goodies!

And you can join the legion of Rock Band game fans if you win the grand prize. Awesome.

Check here for the link to the Mashable Rocks contest. Hat tip to Jess3 for the knowledge!

Last night I had the distinct pleasure to attend my second DC Tweet Up meeting (with more people than the first DC Tweet Up/Social Media Club event I went to). This was also my first DC Media Makers meetup, hosted by the wonderful Jill Foster.

We had a great agenda of events which included a plug for PodcampDC (I’m going!) and the Women Who Tech telesummit (I’m obviously not going!). Andy Carvin spoke about NPR’s upcoming user-generated video project that focuses on voting and Tac Tacelosky of SmokeFreeDC (yay public health initiative!) talked briefly about his own video project based on family.

Finally our keynote speaker was the well-respected Stowe Boyd who writes at StoweBoyd.com. He gave some great insight into the relationship of how social tools being used today can be compared to innovations of yesteryear – phones on office desks and more recently corporate email and instant messaging. These technologies were once frowned upon and even deemed useless when they first came on the scene. However, all three developments have become effective tools of business and are mainstays in our daily lives.

Stowe went onto mention that tools such as Twitter, will continue to evolve into new, productive tools for our lives. Those of us who have been early adopters will not only be ahead of the curve when that happens, we will also be able to set the standard and help propel others into a new age of beneficial digital living!

I’m telling you, this kind of thinking really gets me going! I have finally found a way to engage myself into 2 of my passions – technology and people interaction. It was awesome to finally meet the lovely @koa (Kenya) and @Suki_MHC05 (Suki)! Good times had by all – can’t wait until next time!

Pictures coming soon

So last night I ventured out to Falls Church, VA to the infamous Viget Labs to attend the February Social Media Club DC meetup.

I had an absolute blast! It was fun to finally meet people I’ve connected before through social media like Jill Foster, Shashi and the video-tastic Jonny Goldstein!

The speaker for the night was Aaron Brazell of TechnoSailor fame – he spoke about how to take your blog to the next level, the big leagues. Some of the things I learned as a new blogger is that despite the great designs and visual effects that pull you in as a reader, content must be KING (thanks Qui). Without quality writing, people will most likely flip through, shrug and keep moving onto another one of the thousands of blogs in the ‘sphere.

I’ve made it a personal promise to make sure I blog regularly and with relevant content. Just like everything else, it takes hard work and dedication, but I’m so passionate about this stuff – it’s not even funny.

We had guest cameos via video from Problogger’s Darren and Chris Brogan. It was awesome.

If you’re in the DC area and are interested in this thing we call social media, come on out next month!

For more coverage of the event, The Buzz Bin and Shashi also wrote some reviews. And here is last night’s event recorded with YouTube slideshow of the presentation deck.

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**UPDATE** Contest prize is a $25 Amazon Gift Card! (Does that make you want to think of a suggestion??)

Recently on my many adventures and interactions on Twitter, I came across an individual who alerted me to something that has been on the back burner of my mind for a week or so. Basically it was brought to my attention that the name of my blog, Antibio.tech, might give people the idea that my blog’s content focuses on defacing the biotech world – which is far from the truth.

Back in late September when I was racking my brain to come up with a name for my blog, I settled on this one thinking that it was kind of clever (antibiotic + tech), encompassing a solution for an ailment and the ‘tech’ as a twist to show the focus on technology. But alas, 5 months later, it seems that I will go ahead and think of another name. The last thing I want people to think when they see the name of my blog is that it is against the biotech field.

So with that said, I’m planning to hold a contest to find the new name of my blog! That’s right folks, harnessing the power of the social web, I’m going to try to find a user friendly name for my blog that focuses on the intersection of health/well-being and technology (personal tech and social media).

What I need you to do:

  1. Think about some good names for the blog that would make YOU want to come over here
  2. Place the suggestions in the comments on this post
  3. Let others know who may be interested in staying healthy in the digital age

After I guess a week or so, I’ll gather together the suggestions and then create a Top 3 list of the suggestions that I like and will put them in a survey for folks to vote on. Trying not to make this too deep or complicated, just want to find something good that I can stick with.

A few things to help – I am aiming for the blog to:

  • Point out new and effective technologies that can help in living a healthier life
  • Expand upon my thoughts on the social media world and how the new digital age/social web era affects the quality of our lives
  • Highlight health news items that may affect your day to day life
  • Create a community of people who are invested in their quality of life, for the rest of their life
  • Have fun while informing!

Okie dokie, thanks in advance for your participation and I will be coming up with some sort of reward to the chosen name!

What’s social media without the real world ‘social’ elements? With that in mind, I’m making the conscious decision to start attending the many great events going on in the Washington DC area! Each week or so I will publish a list of events that I plan to attend or at least are on my radar that I want to attend or that I find interesting.

NetSquared DC February Meetup [link]

When: Tuesday, February 19th 7pm – 9pm (they are expecting a large crowd so get there promptly at 7pm)

Where: Google (DC Office) 1101 New York Ave NW [map]

Details: This meetup has been filled to capacity however, sign up for the Meetup group for future events. This meeting will focus on Oil Change International – they create campaigns to expose the true costs of oil and facilitate the coming transition towards clean energy. They are dedicated to identifying and overcoming political barriers to that transition.

Washington Blogger February Meetup [link]

When: Wednesday, February 20th 7pm – 9pm

Where: Regional Food and Drink
810 7th St. NW
Washington , DC 20001
202-289-2030
[map]

Details: Local Washington area bloggers meetup for good times and good conversation.

Refresh DC February [link]

When: Thursday, February 21st 7pm – 8pm

Where: APCO Worldwide [map]

Details: Martin Ringlein, co-founder of nclud, will discuss the transition from side-work to serious-work as a freelancer, touching on everything from contracts and invoicing to getting clients and growing a portfolio.

If you’re planning to head out to one of these, let me know!

Continuing on my interests in online communities, my friend Leslie gave me a heads up on a new destination. KnowMeNow seems to resemble a cross between MySpace, Facebook and a good ole neighborhood barbecue.

Looking around the site and figuring out each facet, really got me thinking about what we identify ourselves with in society. When was the last time you asked one of your friends what their favorite food or movie was? Or even what they would consider to be their biggest accomplishment? KnowMeNow seems to provide the opportunity not only to just connect with people but to really get a glimpse as to who they are. I even took the opportunity to include one of my favorite posts onto my journal page on the website.

And what would a good community be like without a good discussion? Over here there is a conversation started about what new media means to you. I think it’s pretty obvious where I stand on that one. We can have all the geeky tools and new innovations on the Web that we want, but more and more people are realizing that it’s near pointless if it doesn’t have a purpose of getting “real life” things done or making our lives more fulfilled. The social web is now a place for ideas to get put out there and collaboration to take place. The technology doesn’t do it for us, which is why people interaction is the thing I enjoy focusing on.

Now that I’m a part of the Web, there is no looking back!

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