Organised by Ken Brady of Genkii.com who runs the Tokyo Beer and Blog website, it was a very social evening with no agenda or presentations. It was mostly an excuse to get together, enjoy a drink at the Hobgoblin Pub in Shibuya and meet other technology enthusiasts.
Andrew Shuttleworth, one of Tokyo's well known social network gurus, was there. He had some electronic "Pokens" for sale at 2,000 Yen each. They were soon snapped up by those of us not already owning one.
Poken is your social business card. Scrap the paper business card! Your Poken card is far more comprehensive. Rather than handing out a piece of paper that shares just your basic contact information such as company, address, phone, and email, with Poken you can include your social network profiles as well. When you associate a social network to your Poken identity that social network's favicon appears on your Poken card. If you are connected to your friend on that social network, then they can click the favicon link to instantly view your social network profile. If you opt not to be connected on that social network, then they will simply see the public-search version of your profile.
We discussed these on the J-bloggers conference and several people were looking forward to getting one. I think they could catch on, but these days with everyone having iphones and mobile phones, where data exchange is already very easy, the extra step of having to register your Poken on their website maybe be one hurdle too many. According to their website they are doing well in Europe.
Some of the many people I met include: Steven Nagata, Ted from TokyoFoodCast.com, Sam Ragnarsson and Matthew Dons who is planning to run a Bar Camp event in Tokyo at the end of May.
Joseph Tame, who has just launched his new podcast site JapanPodShow was there briefly, before having to go to work. In their first podcast: Joseph and George discuss some news items; guest presenter Honor of TokyoTopia has some advice on flying into Tokyo; there's an interview with Ken Brady about Genkii.com's new project Sparkle: The first virtual world for the iphone; the inventor of the Poken talks about how he first thought of the idea and how he met Britney Spears; there's an interview with a musician and a competition to win a Poken too! Go on over to JapanPodCast.com to hear the full story.
One last thing: check out this Web Trends map of the most influential websites arranged in format of the Tokyo Subway map. From Information Architects.
(Hat Tip to Japansoc.com where it is one of the top stories. In fact it should appear in the widget on my sidebar with the subject Websites as Stations on the Yamanote )