Techies, entrepreneurs get together to share notes; Chennai’s first-ever Quora meet tomorrow

For the city’s vibrant software community, comprising students, software developers and entrepreneurs, weekends are not just about chilling.

This Sunday evening, they get to choose from two events to attend: the Open Coffee Club meeting at the Startup Centre in Valmiki Nagar, Thiruvanmiyur and the Quora Meetup at a coffee shop within the IIT-Madras campus.

Special interest groups, guided by the city’s top technology evangelists, keep organising such meetings as a means to get together, brainstorm and generally share notes.

The oldest of the groups is the Open Coffee Club (OCC) that meets at least once a month, and as the name suggests is open to any one interested in entrepreneurship-related issues.

The topic for discussion this Sunday is ‘Copywriting for Start-ups.’

A group of volunteers from IIT-Madras is organising the city’s first ever Quora Meetup this Sunday. Aerospace engineering student Akhyansh Mohapatra, one of the city’s most active members of Quora, has called for the meeting.

Dorai Thodla, who runs a software firm in Silicon Valley and brings people together in such fora, said Quora was a fantastic social network that would serve as a valuable resource for budding entrepreneurs.

There are some niche special interest groups that are active too. Filter Coffee is one such peer group specifically for start-up founders, where the discussions are more intricate. “We are a group of entrepreneurs with some connection to Chennai, and the idea is to build on each other’s experience,” the closed user group’s moderator, Vivek Durai said.

Four months ago, Filter Coffee organised a train trip for its group of users to just experience travelling together and sharing ideas.

“There are several world-class start-ups in Chennai and also some user groups that are below the radar,” says Venkatesh Krishnamurthy, chief evangelist of website that focuses on entrepreneurship. “However there are still a few companies that are reluctant to come and share experiences.”

Vijay Anand, mentor of Startup Centre, which has recently moved its premises from Egmore to Thiruvanmiyur, said there was some reluctance among all Indian entrepreneurs when it comes to sharing micro details whereas in the west, people were more willing to trust their peers with such information.

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