One of the first people to join my new Linkedin Bloggers group is Danny R. Faught from Fort Worth, Texas, owner of Tejas Software Consulting, a self-described Software Alchemist and a keen networker.
Danny is actively promoting a new networking venture, Jambo Networks, which uses wireless technology to enhance face-to-face networking.
The Jambo site explains the system this way:
Jambo is peer-to-peer personal area matching technology, designed to let people directly network face-to-face with WiFi. Jambo uses PDAs, laptops, and smartphones, connecting them without intermediaries. You don’t even need to be on the Internet to use it. It’s easy. You just need Jambo, a mobile device and a desire to meet someone nearby.
The strategy for rollout is apparently to sign up associations, universities, conferences etc as partner organisations and have people registered as members of those partner groups.
Danny’s Jambo blog illustrates how this works in practice.
Jambo is still at the beta testing phase but you can register your interest as an individual.
I like the idea that you’re sitting in an airport or a Starbucks (actually I prefer *good* coffee, but let the example stand) and your notebook or Blackberry or whatever lights up and says there’s a member of your network nearby.
If this takes off, a lot of us will never have to sit alone again in an airport bar or coffee shop. We will have been alerted to the presence of a colleague and soon we will be enjoying the face to face chat and the special pleasure that comes from sharing a beer or coffee or two with a friendly person.