Gary Vaynerchuk and 3 Demos from Toronto’s Democamp

Gary Vaynerchuk the writer of Crush It! (on here) was on hand for the Jets versus Bills game at the Rogers Centre and stopped by for a quick talk on how to make things happen at Democamp. Thanks to Jay Goldman who made this happen. Luckily the Jets won because Gary said if they didn’t he would not be back (I think that was a joke).

Some of the key points were that it is about passion and without passion you can’t have patience. Gary didn’t read about blogging he just put his head down and went to work. The online world it is about quality content and genuinely caring about people. Without those there is no reason for anyone to come back.

That was the difference between Zappos and Amazon, Zappos had a heart in a way the Amazon didn’t. How does one person scale that type of customer service by trying, people will respect you because you took the time to try even if you can’t always succeed.

So after Gary’s talk it was time to get the 24th Democamp started by being presented sites, technology and software you didn’t know about before. Here are three of the demos that were shown:

5 Blocks Out

Is an online community focused on neighbourhoods and is about people sharing local knowledge about where they live. How it works is that you can put up missions for people seeking places. Then you can have them voted and commented on. You can see what other people are saying about a neighbourhood and what the missions are for that area. It isn’t just about businesses but about everything that makes a neighbourhood a neighbourhood like parks, daycares and community centres. They are in limited preview so check it out here, read their blog here and get on the list so that you can find something you didn’t know about your neighbourhood before.


This is about data and getting out of the transactional system combining it using an easy to use graphic interface. It is very visual and takes cues from spreadsheet software. This is software that they describe as sitting in-between the spreadsheet and enterprise level data management software. It can take files and relational databases and perform complex transformations. It is meant to get the data that is needed to parties faster and in a easy to use way. Currently it is a desktop application with future iterations improving on the current feature set. James Standen describes it as a scratch pad for your data so if your organization could use something like this click here for more information.


It is a service platform for customized news based on topics. They do this based on a semantic map because of its ease of use for the individual. Yesterday at democamp they launched a new portal on their site for news on tech and VC’s. What makes this different is they focus on quality, accuracy and connections. Eqentia is done on a sub real-time basis and is meant as a launching point for you to get the information not as a replacement for the tools you currently use. Check it out here and igive it a spin.

For more information about those who presented at this democamp click here and if you are interested in doing a demo click here for the 411.