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H2 Accelerator Roadshow 2017 — May 10, 2017

H2 Accelerator Roadshow 2017

Over the next few weeks the H2 team will be touring Australian and New Zealand to talk about the upcoming Winter 2017 round of the H2 Ventures Accelerator (starting in August). Applications close 2 June and H2 Ventures are looking for up to 16 teams that are building products and services focused on the Fintech, Data Science and Artificial Intelligence spaces.

At this stage events will be held in the following cities: Adelaide, Auckland, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.

The H2 team will give a brief overview of the H2 Accelerator and what you can expect from being a part of it. They will also talk about what they are looking for and finally will give some tips on how to give yourself the best chance of getting into the program.

About H2 Ventures

Since 2013, H2 Ventures has been reinventing financial services by bringing together talented entrepreneurs, investors, forward thinking established financial services organisations and other thought leaders in the world of technology enabled disruption.
We operate the H2 Accelerator, Australia’s only dedicated fintech and data accelerator, with the vision of cultivating a critical mass of talented people to work on world changing ideas.

The H2 Ventures Accelerator Program runs for 20 weeks with 10-16 teams (typically 2-3 entrepreneurs per team) invited to join the Program in each intake. Successful teams are based in H2 Ventures Sydney offices for the duration of the Program.

We like startups in the financial services (fintech), insurance, realestate, cyber security, data and analytics, artificial intelligence and related fields.

Companies H2 has helped grow include Stockspot, Equitise, Simply Wall St, Macrovue, HashChing, Spriggy, Deposits.org, Valiant Finance, Edstart, Birch Finance, Tapview, LoanDolphin, Dishme, DiviPay, Goodments, Inside Sherpa, Nod and Reji.

Applications are currently open (closing 2 June) for the fifth round of the Accelerator which will commence on the 1st of August, apply at https://h2.vc/accelerator

#FridayQuote #OnChange — March 10, 2017

#FridayQuote #OnChange

“To improve is to change, so to be perfect is to have changed often” Winston Churchill. This applies equally to individuals, companies, industries, countries, species. How have you changed lately?

Fintech 100 — December 15, 2015

Fintech 100

Ben and I (H2) in collaboration with KPMG have released the Fintech 100 report for 2015. It covers the top fintech startups from around the world. You can view the report online here or download the PDF version.

100 fintech start-ups in 3 years — May 26, 2015

100 fintech start-ups in 3 years

My brother Ben and I announced today that we have established the H2 Accelerator, a dedicated fintech accelerator that will invest in 100 early stage ventures over the next three years. Any one of these investments has the potential to fundamentally disrupt the financial services sector.

Application for the H2 Accelerator program opened today, and will close on 30 June 2015. For more information or to apply please visit H2 Ventures

Having previously established one of the world’s first and Australia’s only fintech accelerator, we know that an accelerator is the best way to help fintech entrepreneurs turn their ideas into viable startups that can attract serious funding.

H2 Ventures will be located in the Stone and Chalk co-working space.

So if you’re a fintech entrepreneur go to h2.vc for further details.

The future of photography and TV — January 18, 2012

The future of photography and TV

If you have stumbled upon my blog you will have noticed that I don’t post often (about once a year) but when I do it’s usually because I foresee a convergence of technologies that will profoundly change the way we do things. This post is no exception.

In recent months I have been playing around with two new photographic technologies that will each cause step changes in the way we take, view and share photographs and videos. The convergence of these two technologies could completely revolutionize the way we experience TV and communicate.

The first technology is called light field photography. It has been around for a while in medical imaging applications but a new start-up called Lytro is going to propel it into the mainstream with the introduction of consumer light field cameras. I have ordered one and it should arrive in the next few months. I will be sure to post some examples of living photos when it arrives.

Lytro living picture camera

The amazing thing about light field cameras is that their photos are focused by the viewer after the photo has been captured. As you view, you choose what interests you and focus on that part of the photo by touching it. This makes viewing photos a personalised interactive experience and with no need to focus, light field cameras can take very fast photos, so you won’t miss that memorable moment (as so often happens with consumer cameras). To top things off, any light field image can be converted to 3D after it has been taken.

One of the most expensive parts of a camera is the mechanics and computer processing required for auto-focus. Light field cameras do away with this completely, making them less expensive to produce. The first batch of Lytro cameras are selling for $400-$500. Like most things, the price point will lower as the economies of scale in this start-up get going.

Because the photos are focused post-capture, light field cameras can have large aperture lenses which result in nice narrow depth of field photos without any fear of missing the critical focus point. The large aperture lenses mean fast photos, so no more camera shake or low light issues.

The second technology is being popularised by Kōgeto with their Dot attachment for the iPhone. This device, combined with the Dot app, allows you to record 360 degree video with your iPhone. Then you can pan left or right while the video is playing back to see anything that happened in the full 360 degree space around the camera. Again, this makes watching video an engrossing interactive experience and it is at a consumer friendly price point of $79 for the attachment (the app is free).

Kogeto Dot 360 degree video

Both of these technologies are amazing on their own, but what gets me excited is the possibility of bringing them together, along with other existing technologies, to create new immersive entertainment and communication experiences. Let me paint two pictures of what could be possible in the near future.

Imagine a television controlled by an Xbox-Kinect-like sensor that recognizes you and responds to your gestures. You stand in front of your TV watching your favourite football team in 3D. The cameras around and suspended above the field are all 360 degree light field cameras. Each player also has a 360 degree light field camera built into the top of his helmet. As you watch the game you can control which camera your want to view using sideways arm gestures. You can also pan the camera you are currently viewing by turning your head from side to side, and you can alter the focus by pointing. Watching a game like this would make you feel like you were a part of the action, and it would be quite a workout! Finally, you could allow other people to subscribe to your ‘directors cut’ so that they could view the action through ‘your eyes’. A ratings system of all lounge room directors could rank you so that people who just want to watch the game can choose to follow the most talented directors or perhaps a director who likes to view the game in a way that resonates particularly well with them.

Imagine another scenario, in which you are travelling for work and your spouse and 18 month old daughter are at home. You call them on Skype/FaceTime and up pops a 3D image of your spouse. You can hear your daughter in the background. Rather than requiring your spouse to move the camera you simply turn your head to the left and the image you are viewing pans left until you see your daughter playing. You point at her and the focus sharpens on her face.

These scenarios give a glimpse of the possibilities of these two technologies in the very near future. I look forward to this becoming a reality. What do you think?

Google adds facial recognition — June 5, 2007

Google adds facial recognition

Google is preparing to launch facial recognition for its image search. The feature will be an advanced search option when conducting image searches. This will make the popular activity of vanity searches available in image search. Initially this service will only allow users to distinguish between images of faces and those of objects, logos etc.

You can try out the new facial search by “&imgtype=face” to the end of the image search results URL, or try following the links bellow for a search for FORD with and without facial search.

FORD normal

FORD with image type FACE

ROSE normal

ROSE with image type FACE

One has to wonder when Google will look to monetize image search and how it will go about do this? If it is looking to improve and therefore drive more traffic to the service then surely it must be thinking about a business model. Perhaps it could put small image based ads down the right hand side of the results screen to fit in with the layout of the page…

Back in Black — May 13, 2007

Back in Black

Blackle is now back in action. We had some server issues to do with the sudden jump in visitors that we recieved recently. As a result our server had to be taken off line, but we are now back and we have taken measures to prevent this from happening again.

Thanks all of you for your support and patience. Remeber to set Blackle as your home page so you are reminded of the need to take small measures to save energy each time you go online.

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