Roundabout 9.4.18

September 4, 2018

NEXT MEETING

On September 11 our speaker will be Selma Sabonovic, associate professor of informatics and cognitive science at Indiana University, Bloomington.

Professor Sabonovic founded and directs the Laboratory for Human-Robot Interaction research at IUB. Her research focuses on the design, use, and impact of socially interactive robots. She studies the design and use of robots in eldercare and mental health, STEM education and group interactions among humans and robots.

Dr. Sabonovic has been a visiting professor at Bielefeld University in Germany, a lecturer at Stanford University and a visiting scholar at the Intelligent Systems Institute at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) in Tsukuba, Japan, and the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

Dr. Sabonovic received her Ph.D. in science and technology studies from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2007. She has master’s and bachelor’s degrees in political science and international relations from Boğaziçi University, in Istanbul.

The meeting will be in the Frangipani Room of the Indiana Memorial Union at noon.

 

This Week’s News

It’s a boy!

 President Loren’s wife, Morgan, gave birth Friday, August 31, to a son, Coleman Rhett Snyder, 6 lbs. 13 oz. and 21 in. At Tuesday’s meeting, the club members gave the Snyders a standing ovation and sent an online video welcoming Coleman and congratulating his parents.

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Service opportunities available now

Saturday September 15: Amethyst House Volunteer Painting, 9 a.m to 1 p.m. (come for a portion if you can). The link to the Sign-Up Genius is Amethyst House Volunteer Painting or reach out to Ann Connors for more information.

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Remember these dates

  • Comedy Attic’s 10th anniversary benefit for Teachers Warehouse, starring Michael Ian Black, is September 20 at 8 p.m. See Sara Laughlin for details.
  • District Governor Sue Wright will speak to our club on October 2.
  • The 2018 Rotary Toast honoring Steve and Connie Ferguson is scheduled for November 2. Mark your calendar now. Order your tickets soon.

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SEPTEMBER 4 PRESENTATION

Pat East is looking for investors. He wants people with real money to make real investments in start-up businesses in Bloomington. The talent is here, he said, and the training and the cheerleading, but not the money.

East is the CEO of Hanapin Marketing, a successful digital marketing company created in 2004 that provides clients with pay-per-click  (PPC) digital advertising services. Hanapin, which is the Filipino Tagalog word meaning “search,” also owns and operates PPC Hero, a leading PPC blog, and Hero Conf, a PPC-only conference site. But most of East’s time these days is devoted to another project, Dimension Mill, a business incubator in Bloomington’s Trades District.

Dimension Mill has been a city project for nearly a decade, he said, and this fall it will expand into 19,000 square feet of renovated space in the Showers Brothers Factory near Bloomington’s downtown. The city has spent $2 million on infrastructure and $4 million on the project, which has East as executive director. By Halloween, construction will be done, he said, and this new space will become a home for entrepreneurs, freelancers, business start-ups, and remote workers of all sorts.

Obstacles to projects like this are four, he said: lack of talent, capital, training, and cheerleading. But with energetic support from organizations like Indiana University and Ivy Tech, companies like Cook and East’s own Hanapin Marketing, and experienced entrepreneurs, there is lots of training expertise and lots of supportive cheerleading. As for talent, he said, “Bloomington is awesome, full of talented, smart people.” Furthermore, Bloomington is an “aspirational city, a fun, cool place. If you want to stay in Indiana, we are a good place to live.”

What is missing is capital. Bloomington does not have a lot of high wealth individuals supporting startups or angel investors, he said. “There are a hundred paths to find investors. I’ve gone down a hundred paths, and I’ve come up empty,” he said. What investors seem to love in Bloomington is real estate: “We love student housing.” Real estate is tangible, and investors like that. Moving them from tangible assets to investing in intangibles – like start-up companies – is difficult, even though angel investing often produces great returns.

Starting up new businesses is something East knows about personally. His company, Hanapin Marketing, started with a spare bedroom and $2,000. This year it will produce $10 million in revenue. It is that kind of experience and success East wants to bring to Dimension Mill, a place where new businesses can get a start and existing businesses can learn how to use technology to reach larger audiences. “We want to help everybody in our community,” said East.

Instead of selling locally, he said, we can show you how to reach a global audience. We can imagine a world where everyone has a job, and it is the best job they could have.

For anyone who would like to take a tour of Dimension Mill, below are links to sign up:

 

Update

OUR SEPTEMBER 4 WEEKLY GATHERING

President-elect Earon Davis presided.  Sara Laughlin greeted Rotarians and guests, and David Meyer led the pledge and reflection.

David reflected on how the world’s democracies struggle politically while short-term economic interests clash with the effects of a changing world climate. A case in point is the home of last year’s Rotary International President, Ian H.S. Riseley. Australia is the largest coal exporter in the world and soon to be the largest exporter of natural gas, but it has endured repeated governmental turmoil as it tries to reconcile the reality of climate change with the potential loss of fossil fuel markets. Australia has had six prime ministers in the past decade and none has finished a term, he said. The inability of democratic governments to reflect meaningfully on the unwanted consequences of economic gain not only brings down governments but also fails to solve problems.

 

Jim Shea introduced our guest speaker, Pat East.

Katelyn Lipa introduced our guests:

  • Jun Takahashi, a guest of Jim Bright
  • Greg Deason, a guest of Liz Irwin

 

Membership Anniversaries This Week

Dan Preston – 8 years

 

Membership Birthdays This Week

Marilyn Wood, September 5

Jim Shea, September 6

Earon Davis, September 7

Jon Dilts, September 7

Loren’s thought for the day: “I am blessed to have my Rotary family as Morgan and I extend our family. Thank you for your love and support.”

Jon Dilts, Reporter

Charlie Osborne, Photographer