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  1. LAUNCH = FACTORY = Proximity

    Community development is a funny thing. It's exciting, scary, punishing, rewarding, slow and fast all at the same time. It's also multidimensional—often there are multiple entities working towards the same or similar goals.  When we started LAUNCH West CO, it didn't take long before we realized that we weren't the only people in Western Colorado passionate about making our communities better. In the 2014/15 winter season, we saw the formation of the GJ Tech Meetup and Western Colorado Creative Professionals (both now a part of LAUNCH), Proximity Space and LAUNCH.  By October of 2015, several communities in Western Colorado, led by community drivers in Montrose, Mountain Village and Grand Junction, held the first regional Startup Weekend to take place on our side of the state, and it was a huge … Read More

  2. Grand Valley Food Hub is coming!

    Here at Launch West CO, we are always trying to support entrepreneurial efforts to grow and nurture the community. The Grand Valley Food Hub venture actually does just that. … Read More

  3. Spintertainment Takes the Suck Out of Off-Season Training

    Every great idea starts with a problem to solve. When professional mountain biker Eric Landis went looking for training videos to use for his indoor winter workouts, all he found were road bike videos. “I wanted to have mountain bike videos for my indoor training, so I started making them myself.” As he began filming local trails and using his homemade videos, word of mouth spread; friends wanted to try them. “The demand was there. People asked for more. These were amateur but people were enjoying them.” … Read More

  4. We Can't Say "No" to the Future

    Click Here to Email City Council Quickly and Easily   BROADBAND UPDATE: Council has removed the broadband discussion from the agenda this Wednesday. Stay tuned. We'll update as we have more info.   Grand Junction is a wonderful place to live. Mountain biking, hiking, wine tasting, rafting, skiing and so much more are all right on our door step. The quality of life in our valley is truly top notch; it's why we live here. But as we move further and further into the future, towards a more high-tech workforce, driven by remote workers and entrepreneurs, we risk losing access to what we love so much.  I don't mean to say that our outdoor resources are in danger of going away. But we might be. Estimates place the number of workers … Read More

  5. Startup Weekend Telluride

    The recent Startup Weekend held in Telluride continues the momentum that Western Colorado is gaining in the exciting world of entrepreneurship and startup companies. “This is the second one we’ve done in Telluride,” says Marc Nager, Managing Director of the Telluride Venture Accelerator and Co-Founder of Startup Weekend. “There are about 1000 events per year in 140 countries. These events are for community building to help entrepreneurs take the first steps to actually launch companies.” Community leaders from across the Western Slope plan to collaborate to host four Startup Weekends in Colorado each year, with initial sites set in Grand Junction, Montrose, Durango, and of course Telluride. “We were hoping to get 30 people to attend, and were delighted to have almost 60 participants there,” Marc says. Attendees came from … Read More

  6. OpenOptic — A Revolution in Communication

    Each revolution starts with an idea. In the world of tech, there are industry shifts that innovate on existing technology, there are evolutionary changes that take something in existence and make it better. And then there is a shift so profound, so groundbreaking, so revolutionary that it will change not only how things are currently done, but open the way for things that are beyond what we can currently imagine. Like the telephone in the beginning of the last century, or the internet in the late 80s, like the switch from dial-up to DSL to Wi-Fi, Colter Lovette of OpenOptic is set to revolutionize the way we connect to one another. Growing up in the Valley and now a local tech entrepreneur, Colter has designed a fiber based software that … Read More

  7. SynapticSwitch - Virtual Reality Gaming Company Located in Grand Junction

    The video game industry has exploded over the past few decades, with each new generation of players and creators building on the gains of the one before them. Robert Madsen, who started SynapticSwitch with his son Stephen in 2010 is excited to be on the forefront of the latest video game wave — virtual reality. … Read More

  8. Telluride Venture Accelerator

    Creating the Southwest Innovation Corridor  The Telluride Venture Accelerator (TVA) is leading the charge to bring startup companies in targeted industry niches from conception to success. Western Colorado is an up-and-comer in the world of tech start-ups, and the TVA is spearheading the charge.  With what is being dubbed the Southwest Innovation Corridor (SWIC), TVA and the Telluride Foundation are expanding on the success of TVA with a regional vision to unite communities across the western part of the state, this non-profit mission of the TVA will have a positive impact by creating an environment where companies have access to funding, facilities and work forces. Many small communities have some of the necessary resources to help small business succeed, but through regional efforts to encourage collaboration, Thea Chase, Director of TVA … Read More

  9. The Sky’s the Limit

    DragonflyAI is disrupting the oil and gas industry, and now stands poised to do the same in industries across the board. By melding drones and survey techniques, Joshua Lloyd, Chris Putnam and Carey Wheeler have created something new, something unique, something that may change the way we see the world. Joshua Lloyd has always been an entrepreneur; from the age of ten when he sold worms to bait shops in Colbran. After growing up ranching, he ended up in the oil fields, first fracking, then drilling, and finally in oil field services. Chris Putnam, who met Joshua when Chris was a pipeline environmental inspector (EI), is a proponent of perpetual optimization, constantly looking for ways to increase efficiency. Both are outside-of-the-box thinkers who have shaken up the oil and gas … Read More

  10. Go Code Colorado kicks off with Challenge Weekend

    Check it out. Built In Colorado featured last year's Grand Junction teams in a photo for an article about Go Code! Check out the full thing! … Read More

  11. Stack Overflow Developer Survey

    For a few years now Stack Overflow has conducted surveys of the developers who use the site. There are some fascinating numbers, and if you are like me and you love seeing data, there is a lot here to be seen. Take a look. … Read More

  12. Colorado, Innovation and the White House

    Colorado is phenomenal, isn't it? We live in the land of endless trails, gorgeous mountain ranges, rivers to everywhere and more outdoor activities than you could ever conquer. But it doesn't stop there, Colorado is a hub for high-tech entrepreneurship.  So I was naturally excited to read about our friends at the Colorado Technology Association and other Colorado leaders meeting with White House to discuss Colorado's opportunity to take the lead in technology innovation. It's so important that our government leaders do everything they can to foster business and entrepreneurship, and we're lucky to have leaders doing just that. Go Code is an excellent example. “Colorado has a phenomenal story,” Holston said. “There’s real alignment here between government and business. There’s support for innovation and entrepreneurship here, and in terms of the cybersecurity work-force development, … Read More

  13. Go Code 2016 Challenge Statement

    This year's Go Code Challenge Statement is much broader than in the past. While that can be intimidating, don't let fear stop you from participating. There is nothing like working with an incredible team to build something new to teach you the things you don't know—and we all don't know something. Now, if you think you’re more of a problem solver than a problem definer, then we encourage you to find a teammate or two who can bring that strength to your team. It will definitely help if you have some business expertise on the team as well. After two years of running this challenge, we’re amazed by creative solutions that we would have never thought of—and we’re looking forward to more of that brilliance from the tech entrepreneurship community … Read More

  14. Some Thoughts on Professional Etiquette

    Its amazing to me that posts like this are needed, however I occasionally run into people who seem unaware of these simple principles. Fortunately, most of the people I know through LAUNCH and beyond are wonderful people who really get it. Still, they are good reminders! Be sure to read the whole post and its follow up, but here are some choice morsels: Recently, I tried to make an introduction between a good friend of mine and a friendly acquaintance, and the acquaintance had her sights set on a more attractive prey. The introductions were brusque, all eye contact avoided, and my friend, who had considered my acquaintance for a project, in the end, decided against it. Don't do this. It's happened to me, and I'm extremely unlikely to give someone … Read More

  15. Gigabit Internet in Grand Junction

    Gigabit Broadband Internet If you don't care about the commentary, scroll down and please take the surveys.I've had countless discussions with more of you than I can remember and if there is one theme that comes up more than any other it's that you hate the Internet connectivity in Grand Junction. I sympathize. It's too often spotty and unreliable.And it's slow! The fastest service reasonably available to my office is 100Mb fiber, up and down, and if I'm an exception it that I have faster options than most. Still, 100Mb is absurdly slow in a gigabit world ... but hey, at least it's expensive—at well over $1,000 a month. So instead I have 60Mb cable, that is when it's working.We have an opportunity to change that!The first step has been taken and it … Read More

  16. Just Launch Already

    I couldn't have said it better myself. Just launch already! When I ask a struggling to launch founder what is stopping them, the most common answer is a fear of a terrible launch. As if they will fail and shut down on week one if their launch doesn’t go great. I remind them that never launching is complete failure and all great companies take years to build, so they move onto the next fear… People hating their product/service. I remind them that any writer’s biggest fear is not that their book will get panned by critics, it’s that no one will even notice their book existed. I tell them that if people have strong feelings about their product, that’s a sign that they care. You’ve touched a real problem. Finally, … Read More

  17. Resources from Seth at Hoptocopter

    Thanks again to Seth and the team at Hoptocopter Films for opening their space for our January Beer & Business. We had a phenomenal time and if you were there, I'm sure you felt the momentum building for a great 2016! Here are the resources Seth mentioned during his talk: The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement How to succeed as a creative long term: know your C.O.D.B. Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make Competition Irrelevant … Read More

  18. Don't Do Spec

    This is phenominal. Nothing to say really, except don't do spec. … Read More

  19. We Did It!

    Wow! You did it! We did it! Together with the Outdoor Recreation Coalition and the greater Grand Valley community, almost $100,000(!) has been pledged, and a majority of City Council have finally indicated that they are in favor of moving forward. The vote is tomorrow night, but it looks positive! It's clear that we are a passionate group of community leaders who have a vision of a Grand Junction that exists beyond of the boom and bust economy we've been stuck in for so long. A Couple of NotesFirst, I know some of you may not be interested in these kinds of communications. I would ask that you stick with us a little longer. We are working on a way to give subscribers a way to choose what types of communications … Read More

  20. GJ About to Miss Out on an Amazing Opportunity

    The City of Grand Junction has been asked to host the start of the U.S.A. Pro Challenge in August 2016. This is an event which would draw the top cyclists from all over … Read More

  21. Nov Beer & Business Recap

    We had a great Beer & Business at the Maverick Innovation Center and great drinks at The Point. Thanks again to CMU for hosting us! Bryan Wachs was kind enough to share his slide deck with us. Download it here. … Read More

  22. Go Code Colorado Dates Announced

    The dates for Go Code Colorado have been announced. Go Code 2015 was a blast, and 2016 promises to be even better. Put these dates on your calendar before you schedule something else! … Read More

  23. Congrats to SnagHub on Winning Western Colorado Startup Weekend

    Startup Weekend was amazing! Congrast to everyone on a job well done. And congrats to SnagHub on coming in first for the entire weekend. We can't wait to see what you do with it! … Read More

  24. Creating a Community

    Welcome to LAUNCH WestCO! This community has been a long time coming. For more than two years, there have been discussions about bringing the developers, designers and entrepreneurs of Western Colorado … Read More