The Blog of Kendall

Observations and Interests of Kendall Schoenrock – Web 2.0, Startups, Technology, & Other Fun Stuff

October 17, 2008

LTLprints Repost: Digital Walkabout

Here is a repost of my most recent article at LTLprints.com/blog

I spend a good amount of time online, so I thought I’d share with you some of the cool stuff I’ve viewed recently.  This is in no particular order.

October 13, 2008

Midwest Trip

The co-founders of LTLprints.com were able to sneak away to the Midwest on an investors trip.  Checkout this video and leave me a comment!

September 25, 2008

Under Construction

The site is currently in the process of being moved. There maybe some missing information. Please be patient.

July 24, 2008

Cool People

This time last year I moved to New York City.  It’s been an amazing time and I thought it might be fun to talk about some of the interesting people I’ve met along the way.  This list is by no means comprehensive, but here are a few that I thought you might enjoy.

Tony Baigalupo

Tony Baigalupo:  TonyB is the driving force behind projects such as NewWorkCity and has dedicated an amazing amount of energy and effort in promoting and organizing coworking in NYC & Cooperbricolage.

What I like most about Tony is how much he’s focused on giving back.  Tony has built an amazing network, that he shares without hesitation, and someone worth reaching out to if you want to play in the NYC startup scene . Oh yeah, he also is a resident at house2.0 – very cool.


Sanford Dickert

Sanford Dickert: I met Sanford while he was helping Tony with their unending quest to establish an official coworking space in NYC.  I liked him from the first time chatted and we’ve had some fun nights out on the town.  One of the most interesting facts that I learned a few weeks after our first meeting was the Sanford was the CTO of John Kerry’s 2004 Presidential Campaign.

Sanford is really great at helping projects get off the ground and pointed in the right direction.  You could think of him as a walking linkedin as well.  Thanks for your feedback on so many of my ideas!


DavidJr.com Bling

DavidJr.Com:  David is one of those guys who is always producing a crazy viral video that leaves you somewhat questioning the sanity of people.  A guerrilla videographer,  DavidJr.com has mastered the art of self promotion and viral videos.  He sings a mad karaoke too!  If you’ve got some time checkout his videos over at davidjr.com. Watch out that you don’t get blinded by his *bling* belt buckle.


Gregory Galant

Gregory Galant:  Depending on the day it is Greg might be found interviewing top entrepreneurs for his famous Venture Voice podcast or causing a stir in the online world as CEO of the hilarious news parody website News Groper. There are some pretty funny stories  of mainstream media picking up his parody articles and citing them as facts – way to go big media.

I had a chance to interview him at AlwaysOn NYC. If I can get permission from FountainHeadNetworks.tv I’ll try to post that here.


Howard Lindzon

Howard Lindzon:  It’s pretty tough not to enjoy the brains behind hit shows like Wallstrip, the Naked Putz, and MobLogic.

I first met Howard when I was at Wallhogs and have really enjoyed tracking what he is up to and reading his kick-ass blog. If you’re not following Howard you’re missing out.  He’s amazingly informative and entertain at the same time.

He’s also sitting on a nice fund over at Knight’s Bridge Capital Partners.


Matt Trush

Matt Trush:  As founder at Convos.com, Matt is one of the guys who helped inject me into the NYC Tech Meetup community.  Always willing to help out and drink some beer, Trush is a quality guy and someone who I really enjoyed getting to know.  Also a Villanova guy, we were called back into the classroom together to give a startup presentation to the nationally ranked business undergrads and that was a blast! If you’ve got a minute checkout his style blog and pickup his feed – well worth it.


That is today’s social digital walk about. Do you know any of these gents? Drop me a comment and let me if you know anyone in the group.  I would enjoy hearing from you.

May 14, 2008

The Scale of Economy

I came across this cool representation of the size of the American economy.  Check it out.
source

The Size of the US Economy vs China, Germany, and the UK

May 13, 2008

LifeStraw – Clean Water for $2 – Kill Disease As You Drink

LifeStraw - Clean Water for $2 - Kill Disease As You DrinkOn September 8, 2000 world leaders met at the UN headquarters in New York City for the Millennium Summit. During this meeting 189 countries agreed to attempt to reach 8 goals by 2015. More on the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) can be found here. The goals are as follows:

1.) Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
2.) Achieve universal primary education
3.) Promote gender equality and empower women
4.) Reduce child mortality
5.) Improve maternal health
6.) Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases
7.)
Ensure environmental sustainability
8.) Develop a global partnership for development

One of the newest products that was built with the sense of urgency the Millennium Summit’s MDG helped to articulate is LifeStraw. Today, over 1 billion people have limited or no access to clean water. Naturally, access to clean water is an essential and through technology Vestergaard Frandsen is able to provide thousands of liters of drinkable water for less than a cup of coffee.

LifeStraw is a personal portable instant water filtration system. Water is sucked through a series of mesh filters, iodine coated beads to kill bacteria and active carbon. The chambers in the flute like device are able to clean the water and eliminate bacteria. How big of a problem does this address? 6,000 people die everyday due to no access to clean water – these are mainly children.

When I was working for the World Banks’ Africa Region I was introduced to many of the trials and tribulations of the countries and it is overwhelming. I’m pleased to see innovative designs like LifeStraw and LifeStraw Family.LifeStraw - photo from BBC http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/4967452.stm

If you have interest in helping a family of 5 get clean drinking water for a year for only $15, donations can be made to the Rotary Club of Ft. Lauderdale Florida. Here is a photo of the LifeStraw Family system.

LifeStraw Family

May 6, 2008

Interview with the CEO of ScanDigital.com

ScanDigital_Logo

For this post I decided to keep it close to home and interview my older brother, Anderson Schoenrock, CEO of ScanDigital.com. Stay tuned as I have a few other interesting entrepreneur interviews in the works. A sincere thank you to my big brother for agreeing to do this interview.Anderson Schoenrock

Tell us about ScanDigital. What are you trying to accomplish?

Sure thing Kendall, thanks for the opportunity to talk to your readers. ScanDigital is an innovative company that provides a service to convert old photographic and movie materials to digital format. We make it easy for people to preserve, organize, and enjoy their photos and video in the digital age. ScanDigital has developed a unique process that is secure, user-friendly and returns a high quality end product. Photos and video are converted to digital format and continually quality checked throughout the process. For photographic materials, our service includes scanning and professional retouching. The digital files are returned on a CD or DVD as well as in an online gallery at ScanDigital where they can be shared with friends and also archived for safekeeping. Our goal is to provide the highest quality service to our customers, with the least amount of hassle possible and in a manner that is highly secure.

What’s the backstory? How long have you been around? How did it get started?

My college friend, Mike Mothner, approached me about the idea after Christmas 2006. He gave his mom a digital camera and after seeing how easy it was to organize all of the new images on her computer, she asked how she could do the same with the old photos from the garage. Mike and I realized there had to be more people out there with the same question. ScanDigital was born in early 2007 and then launched in June 2007. The first year has been nothing short of phenomenal. We’ve grown from 2 employees to 20 employees. Processed more than half a million images and greatly improved our services along the way.

The experience has exceeded my expectations on every front. That’s not to say we are lacking our share of daily ups and downs like every start up, but the overwhelming trend as been onward and upward. I am especially excited for Year 2 as Year 1 has been focused on putting in place the groundwork and building blocks to take the Company to the next level.

500,000 images scanned is impressive. What new products are you bringing to market?

When we launched we simply offered the conversion of 35 mm negatives, slides, printed photos and photos in albums. Since our launch we have added numerous photographic formats to cover a wider spectrum of materials – and especially materials for high end amateurs and professional photographers, pre-loaded Digital Photo Frames, Custom DVD Slideshows and Video and Film Conversion services. In addition, our overall process and service has gone through several iterations of major improvements.

While the fundamental service is the same and the quality has remained high from Day 1, we have built a highly unique workflow management system called the EssentialTracker. Through the EssentialTracker all 14 steps of our process our integrated within our facility and customers have access to information about the status of their order in real time. This has taken our internal logistics to a whole new level that is unmatched by any other company in our market space.

What is unique and different about this service?

When we started ScanDigital we took a fundamentally different approach to this business than any of our competitors. Our service is focused on the customer and the user experience. Everything we do is focused on making a very technical, time consuming, daunting process easy for our users. At the same time we realized that there is a need to accommodate a wide spectrum of customers. We work with people that range from 80 year old grandmothers who know little to nothing about computers to professional photographers and design studios that are involved in photography professionally. This means we needed to create a process rigid enough to be fast, safe, secure and high quality while flexible enough to meet the needs of all customers. This lead to our Dynamic Order Form, which literally changes on the fly as the user makes their selections. Steps that are superfluous for that individual customer are hidden and other steps are revealed only as needed.

From a pure service perspective, we are the only service to have both the online photo gallery and conversion service components. We not only convert old material to digital files, but we also post them to our online photo gallery. People can also upload new digital images to their gallery in order to organize their images in one place, creating a seamless photo archive.

ScanDigital also has the fasted turnaround time in the industry, something that is highly valued by our customers.

Who uses your services?

One of the best things about this business is that it appeals to a wide spectrum of potential customers. Pretty much anybody that has any photographic materials or video materials sitting in an out of date format is a potential customer for us. Families use our service to preserve and protect their images against floods, fires, or other disaster. Photographers use ScanDigital to convert their old photographs to digital files in order to sell them on stock photo sites. Brides and grooms use our service to have Slideshows made to play at the rehearsal dinner. We’ve worked with doctors to convert medical slides into digital. Our list of professional/business clients includes architecture firms, design firms, party planners, professional organizers, funeral directors, governmental organizations. Clients that most people would recognize include the City of Pasadena, MTV Studios, Volcom, Shane Battier (NBA Star – Houston Rockets) and Dana Delaney (actress on Desperate Housewives).

Given that we appeal to many different markets, I’ve found myself attending events that I would never have imaged. A few weeks ago I attended a Craft and Hobby Convention speaking about how digital images can enhance crafts. Last week I was at a Funeral Director Tradeshow to meet with funeral directors who are ideal for our affiliate program. In early June we’ll be exhibiting at the world’s largest Scrapbooking Convention. It’s exciting to think of new ways to expand our audience but sometimes I have just laugh when I look at my schedule.

What’s the best part about this business for you?

I’ve been asked this question several times and it is hard to pinpoint the best part. There are so many things I enjoy about what we’re doing here and what we’re building. Internally, I think it is our team and building our team. We’ve hired great people and they’ve helped build a successful platform. We’re very much in a hypergrowth stage which means a lot is asked of our employees. Things change all the time. At one point we were hiring a new person every two weeks. People that were hired to do one thing are now doing performing other tasks. This requires a team that is willing to roll with things a bit, it’s a lot to ask and the team on the whole has responded in an outstanding manner.

Externally, it’s hearing from our customers. As I mentioned our customer’s are our focus and as part of that I have made it a goal to reach out to as many of them as possible to hear what they liked and what they did not like. People have asked me how I can afford to spend so much time soliciting feedback and interacting directly with customers. I am not sure how I can afford not to! I think what we’ve put in place is great, but I always assume it could be better. Listening to our customers is important for growing the business the right way. It is always especially rewarding to see the positive impact we’re having on people. We’re really in the business of helping people bring materials back to life that are otherwise useless in many cases. When I hear how excited someone was to view a set of slides for the first time in 30 years or to see an image they had forgotten about it really motivates me to continue building our business and reaching more customers.

Anderson, thanks for your time in lining up with me. It sounds like you’re building a great company. I will open the floor up to additional questions. Feel free to leave a question in the comments section as Anderson has graciously offered to answer more questions as well. Comments as always are also welcomed. Thanks!

April 28, 2008

Putting Projects to Bed

FountainHeadNetworks.tv LogoFor the last four months I have been consulting a video startup company based outside of Philadelphia called FountainHeadNetworks.tv. FHN creates (many) online video episodic shows. My role was to help develop a distribution strategy that would bring their videos to the masses, grow that audience over time, help standardize the production process, and prime the company to launch 50 new shows this year alone. As of last week, my work there is done.

Feel free to check out some of their fun shows like bitchslapped.tv and for the Spanish speaking community Encanto.

cut the cordOne of the most challenging aspects of ending a consulting job is how deeply I inject myself into the project. As I’ve previously written about here and here, I have a tough time disconnecting myself from my work. I am very passionate about the projects I focus on and find myself wondering about the number of new viewers or what is next in the production queue – even though those pieces are now only distracting me from my next project and the launch of my new company.

Does this happen to you as well? How easily do you unplug from the work activity or do you take it home with you and think about work related issues frequently?

Drop me a comment and let me know what you think!

April 10, 2008

Blogging Absence

Dear Loyal Readers,

Recently I’ve taken a short break from blogging. While this has occasionally happened in the past, this time I’m a little more sidetracked. I’ve been building a few startups in the meantime and I will blog about them soon.

Also, I’ve updated my blog to the latest version of wordpress and that didn’t go very well. For example, as of the writing of this post the only page that is visible is the homepage. None of my previous posts are loading and I’m not sure if its because of the update to WP or if its my host (brinkster.com) I will work of fixing that first and then circle back around to share with you some of the exciting events of the past few months.

In any event, please hang in there. I will be back soon! ;)

Sincerely

Kendall Schoenrock

March 10, 2008

Guest Blogger

I’ve invited a dear friend of mine to be a guest blogger.  She asked me to turn my blog pink in her honor.  I will let her tell you that story….

Miss Gospic, I give you the floor.

-Kendall