Design students participate in local Startup Weekend event

March 9, 2012

Several undergraduate and graduate students in the Department of Design participated in a recent Startup Weekend Columbus event, held at the TechColumbus facility at Ohio State on February 17-19, 2012.

Ben Pappalardo (pictured here), a senior Visual Communication Design student, was involved with a team that developed the "Show Shopper" concept, a service that delivers datasets for product placements in immersive experiences.

Katie Ozamiz, a junior Industrial Design student, provide the following account of her experience, which led to an award for her group's efforts:

"In one weekend, I worked with a team to develop a parking app for the iPhone. It started as an idea Friday night, when all 120 attendees gathered in a room to hear 63 one-minute pitches. I pitched the idea of "Meter Maid," a parking app that could track available meters and push data straight to users. My idea placed first that night, and I formed a team of two web developers, two business students, and myself. 

As the weekend progressed, our idea pivoted several times to become a more sophisticated system that has a solid revenue plan. The name changed to "Park Smart." After an awesome weekend of no sleep and hard work, we had a solid business plan, a working prototype of the app, and branding with visual screen concepts. 

On Sunday, all of the groups gave their final pitches to all the attendees, supplemented by a panel of well-known judges, including one of the founders of Jack Threads. My group tied for 2nd place, and our app gained a lot of interest and momentum. We are continuing with the idea and have pending meetings with several parking companies and the City of Columbus."

More Startup Weekend Columbus events are being planned, and we expect further participation from Ohio State's Design students.