In my 4 years of undergrad at The University of Wisconsin – Madison, not once did I hear the word “entrepreneur.”  To be honest, that might have been because I was buried in math textbooks, but Madison didn’t seem like a startup city.  When I decided to transfer from The University of Texas at Austin (UT) back to my undergrad Alma Mater to continue my PhD, I never thought that I’d find such an incredible energy for entrepreneurship.

Even before I returned to Madison, The Hub, and UW student org, had contacted the 3 Day Startup nonprofit about organizing a 3DS here.  I returned to Madison – almost 5 years after my undergrad – and we hit the ground running to put on one of the most impressive 3DS events that I’ve experienced.

Check out what our teams produced:

Formula Database: Looking through reference texts for mathematical formulas and their descriptions is time-consuming and painful – anyone would rather be solving the problem at hand.  Formula Database can help you find what you need quickly and effortlessly through an intuitive search interface.

Exword: Learning a new language is not just hard, but also expensive, poorly customized, and inconvenient. Exword is an online platform to bring together language learners and tutors to exchange conversation and training over specific topics.

Simply in Touch: Elderly in assisted-living communities have trouble staying connected with family and friends, especially as technology advances and more people use email and mobile communication.  Simply in Touch provides a tablet-based service to help friends and families connect with loved ones in these assisted-living communities.

Boomki: Boomki enables you to travel like a local.  Recognizing that travel guides are dense, tours are expensive, and you don’t always know someone where you’re traveling, Boomki aims to simplify your exploring experience by delivering relevant, digital tours directly to your mobile device.

Weego: Weego takes the pain out of ridesharing.  Public transit is expensive and doesn’t run on your schedule, and organizing rides is hard because of location and time-constraints.  Weego targets this problem by providing a mobile and web service to quickly and easily find reputable rides convenient for you.

Rate-putation: A platform for rating different aspects of people and companies, and building up your reputation to back others.  This team built an impressive website over the weekend.  We look forward to seeing this potentially viral tool available soon!

A Big Thanks:

We had a great set of sponsors and supporters for 3DS Madison: Our premier sponsor was Shoutlet, a Madison-local social media and marketing firm that serves numerous Fortune 500s and other well-known brands.  We also had the support of Epic and Qualcomm (and I need to give a huge shout-out to the mentors from each: Thanks Janet, Mark, Mayank and Rishab!), and the UW Entrepreneurial Residential Learning Community and The Department of Computer Sciences.  Our panel comprised a broad set of experts in the field: Jen Waugh from Epic, Prof. Paul Barford and Prof. John Surdyk from UW-Madison, Joe Kremer of Power Designers and the Wisconsin Angel Network, Blake Samic of Shoutlet, and Justin Beck, the CEO of PerBlue.  Finally, 3DS Madison was hosted at the MGE Innovation Center, part of the University Research Park.  Without their support, we would not have had a venue to hold our event.  Much thanks to everyone who helped make this event a success.