Guest Post by Joakim “Jay” Baage, President at Viking Digital Media

Big Ideas-Brock Pierce & Joakim BaageI initiated Big Ideas last year in collaboration with Innovate Pasadena and Idealab as an event by and for entrepreneurs, creatives and other thought-leaders in the area. The idea was simple—to get together a great group of people here in Pasadena and casually network over a beer or a glass of wine while listening to an LA-based tech entrepreneur tell the story of how they went about starting a company and turned a big idea into big business.

I had recently moved to Pasadena and it was the sort of thing I was missing here; I often found myself driving to Hollywood or, dare I say it, Silicon Beach, to get my tech inspiration and networking fix. It turns out I was not the only one.

Though Innovate Pasadena was only in its earliest stages, a few hundred curious souls came out of the woodwork to support the effort in person and listen to entrepreneurs and creatives talk Bitcoin, YouTube and other techie topics. Tens of thousands have since watched the videos of the talks online.

Now that IP is growing and organizing the city-wide inaugural CONNECT Weekend, isn’t it only fitting that Big Ideas should grow as well?

Big Ideas CONNECT Weekend Edition will be a half-day program, hosted by OpenX, featuring two panels with senior executives from many of Greater Pasadena’s most innovative companies and institutions as well as three presentations from the first companies to graduate from the Design Accelerator—a groundbreaking collaboration between Art Center, CalTech and Idealab.

The topics that will be discussed include the future of advertising, innovating at the intersection of science, art and technology, and anything you bring up during the Q&A!

Companies and Institutions speaking at the event include OpenX, Perfect Market, Ayzenberg Group, Rexter, the Design Accelerator, Viking Digital Media, Art Center College of Design, CalTech, Majesco Entertainment, City of Pasadena and of course three of the first graduating companies from the innovative Pasadena-based Design Accelerator.

On a personal note, I’m humbled by all the cool, smart people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting through IP. Many thanks to all the individuals, companies and institutions who have dedicated their time and resources to Big Ideas and other IP-sponsored programs.

I hope to see you on March 14th at OpenX—with Big Ideas of your own!

To register for this event, go to Eventbrite.