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Innovation & Job News

Teen's Gaming App Wins Startup Weekend Tampa Bay

More than 100 entrepreneurs, software developers, online designers and marketers convened to collaborate and compete in creating innovative startups during the fourth Startup Weekend Tampa Bay June 7–9 at the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg.

Taking first place was Live Warfare, an interactive, person-to-person video game that takes place in real life using a smartphone. Players take a picture of someone and then digitally "shoot'' them, sending a notification to their opponent's phone.

The game is the brainchild of 14-year old Nathan Eyal, whose father Omer brought him to Startup Weekend and also participated in the product development. Other teammates included: Ed Galarza, Akira Mitchell, Ken Morris and Matt Saulding.

The judges used three sets of criteria to select the winners: customer validation, business model and execution. The Live Warfare team reached out to Eyal's friends and other participants for validation. They also created and executed the entire app over the weekend, allowing for a live demonstration at the event.

"We focus on the team, and I think their team was really strong,'' says Ryan Sullivan, co-organizer for Startup Weekend. "Because Nathan was so passionate about the idea, he kept the team moving forward and making decisions.''

Second place went to BuySignal, which monitors Twitter feeds to pull out indicators, or "signals'' that someone is about to make a purchasing decision. For example, someone might tweet that they need a repair for their car, which triggers a mechanic to reach out to them.

Taking third place was StreezWize. A team of 13 participants developed an app that allows people to provide real time feedback about potential crimes. The app attaches police and emergency service data to citizen input, which assists in solving crimes. 

"Crowdsourcing real time data is becoming a huge niche,'' says Kim Randall, co-organizer for Startup Weekend. "I'm super excited to see where Streetwize will go.''

Sources: Ryan Sullivan and Kim Randall, Startup Weekend Tampa Bay
Writer: Megan Hendricks

Read more articles by Megan Hendricks.

Megan Hendricks is a feature writer at 83 Degrees Media in the Tampa Bay region of Florida.
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