There’s Nothing Quite Like Slush

Date: December 2, 2016

Author: Eero Kuusi

Categories:
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There’s Nothing Quite Like Slush

 

There is nothing quite like it. I wouldn’t necessarily call it an event, but more of a movement. What began as an assembly of 300 people in Finland is now a globally recognized event with the aim to change our perception of entrepreneurship. This was my fourth time as an attendee and what I really like about Slush is that there is always something you can learn and take away from the event. For this reason, I decided to write about my thoughts on Slush 2016 and share with you a few of the interesting ideas and stories that stayed with me.

 

The World of Cyber Security Is Hiring

Looking for a career change? A convincing talk with some of the world’s top cyber security entrepreneurs claimed that there is shortage of 1 billion cyber security experts in the world, which is a bold statement. Moreover, experts say that today it is five times faster to become a cyber security specialist than it is to become a senior software programmer. Getting really good at cyber security should only take a couple of years with the right resources.

If you have a kids at home wondering what careers they should pursue in the future, sounds like Cyber Security might be something worth looking into.

 

Synthetic Meat Is Coming to a Store Near You

In recent times, synthetic meat has been a topic of much controversy. However, with new discoveries and feats from scientists in producing meat from animal stem cells, the future of the meat industry looks promising. Memphis Meat, one of the leading companies in growing synthetic meat, encouraged other entrepreneurs to join seizing the $500 billion market opportunity that is the meat industry.

Why does this matter? Because there a number of negative side effects from consuming meat that is produced by conventional methods. By growing clean and artificial meat, the companies tackling this challenge are looking to put an end to concerns such environmental degradation, animal suffering and meats that are rendered unhealthy and unsafe to consume from contaminants such as pathogens and other toxins.

I’m ready to switch to lab meat and according to Memphis Meat, so is over 80% of the meat eating public. The only question is, how long until we can find it in stores?

 

The Elephant In the Room

Every entrepreneur faces this dilemma, balancing their work life with their personal life. The entrepreneurial culture is often viewed as a world of only 20-somethings with no families or other responsibilities besides their work. This is false; success is not limited to those who are able to work 100 hour weeks. There is no reason why you can’t have a family while at the same time following your entrepreneurial spirit and chasing success. At Slush, this was exemplified by Ida Tin, the founder of the world’s fastest growing female health app, “Clue,” as she had her first child when she had just founded Clue and had her second child when she was closing her company’s funding round. Her advice? Be smart. Don’t shy away from getting help with the family and focus on leading your company well from the start, instead of doing everything by yourself.

 

The Future of Virtual Reality

The momentum from last year’s virtual reality “buzz” seemed to slow down this year at Slush. Could this be the calm before the storm? We, the people of Liid, had the opportunity of trying out Microsoft’s “Hololens,” which has been one of the most talked about Augmented Reality (AR) headsets. The demo truly showcased the potential of AR, as we watched a hologram of a robot walk around in a miniature house that suddenly appeared on the table in front of us. The challenges were clear as well, due to the fact that the field of view of the holograms in the headset were quite small and slightly disappointing, especially when comparing to the other virtual reality headsets out there.

It was pretty quiet this year on this front, but I’m hoping for a breakthrough by Slush 2017.

 

Final Thoughts

All things considered, I feel like Slush has come a long way and has matured as an event over the years. Four years ago when I was at my first Slush at the Cable Factory, “Kaapelitehdas”, in Helsinki, it was significantly more chaotic than it is now. You can’t help but appreciate the atmosphere that you find at Slush: the setting, the people, the conversations and the brilliant exhibition of entrepreneurial spirit and energy. I am definitely considering going to the event again next year, however, I do wonder – where does it go from here?


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