Today marks the start of Philly Tech Week.
In its sixth year, the networking extravaganza brings together technology lovers, startups, and established companies. It’s organized by the web-based publication —Technical.ly. Christopher Wink, the founder of the event, has seen tech week evolve into a major happening that melds technology with innovative thought with the changing landscape of media, health, and business.
“Take away the walls so anyone can feel comfortable,” Wink said. “You’re based around walls; you’re often inside because you’re using electronics, but there’s a layer of complexity that keeps people afar from it. We’re trying to find those ways to make it as approachable as possible.”
Last year’s Philly Tech Week showed those walls are coming down quickly. In 2015, the event saw more than 25,000 visitors to its more than 150 events. Its imprint on social media grew as well, garnering 5.2 million web impressions and more than 15,000 mentions on Twitter.
Wink says this event is also meant to extend the reach and relevance of the Philadelphia tech community. He says the tech community may seem obscure, but there is a network of people who have helped change the preconceived notions about technology.
“These are real people who live, breathe, and love Philadelphia,” he said. “These range from software coders — people who have technical backgrounds and work at small companies, under 50 person companies, and they’re building their own products — but they also work at large companies. Any large company today — Comcast, Vanguard, SAP — they have a lot of technologists.
“A technology community also often means small business owners, founders, startups who are trying to talk about the next generation of company,” Wink added. “So they do want to understand how it’s done in an innovative fashion, and that looks like a technology community too.”
To hear the entire interview with Christopher Wink, including on how Philadelphia could expand its tech imprint and how Philly Tch Week compares and differs from the world renown tech festival South by Southwest, press play at the top of the page.