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2018: Another Year to Get it Right!

hello from the hyper room
Hope you all had a great holiday, just back from New Zealand myself!
If you follow me on any social networks you are probably thinking “boy does this guy travel a lot” - I did make it a point to move around as much as possible in 2017 as research for a startup I’m developing that I think will change the (work) world. Stay tuned.
This newsletter will still be the consolidated version of all the things I’m working on and then you will be invited to join the specific ones on the Future of Work, Pop Culture, Events and whatever else you read about below. 
Newsletters: the cheapest way to test an MVP ever 😂

Where am I in the first quarter of 2018?
Working with RISE and Blue Startups takes me on the road a lot and so I will be in these cities in January and February:
  • Hong Kong
  • Hanoi
  • Honolulu
  • Tokyo
Important Dates
Vietnam Startup Challenge - Jan 8-10, I’ve been invited to Hanoi, Vietnam judging Vietnamese startups from all over the world. 176 teams have pitched and the final 16 will pitch in Hanoi. Will report back on what’s happening in Vietnam.
East Meets West 2018 - This will be my second year co-hosting the 2018 edition of East meets West 2018 and this year will be the biggest and most awesome one yet as we welcome speakers on Blockchain, Traveltech and Social Impact to Jurassic Park in Hawaii. Oh yes, it will be fun and for those that want to join me, reply to this email and I’ll send you a code for 25% off the 2-day conference price. See more here.
RISE 2018 - to confirm the 2018 RISE event will be July 10, 11 and 12. That’s Tuesday through Thursday as usual. If you are following me on social media then you saw the flash sale we did for half-price tickets. Oh, look at this we’re doing another one on Jan 9!
2018 Flags-in-the-Ground
The kick off of a new year means a new year of resolutions and I am doubling down on projects that have taken too long to get off the ground in 2017.
YODIN - my mentor network will finally lift off this quarter - so if you haven’t registered yet - register here. I am soft launching with people I know.
HYPERPOP! and THE HYPER ROOM - on the weekends I will be compiling my favorite pop culture things onto which is like Reddit but for geeks - you are welcome to join and upvote the stuff you like and add stuff you think others should see.  The Hyper Room will be the new podcast that will feature interviews with creative people in the pop culture industry from designers to comic artists to TV writers to video game makers and anyone else that is a geek. Subscribe here.
NEW EVENTS COMPANY: I’ve gotten too many requests to not think that this is a viable business for myself so this year I will be launching an events company for startups - this will include organizing demo days, launch parties, networking sessions etc - it will be where the past 8 years of doing this come into a funnel that you can access all across Asia. I’m excited about this and the name and partners will be announced in the next newsletter. But keep this in mind for your events in 2018.
INVESTMENT FUND: I’m working with Gene Soo on putting together a “StartupsHK Fund” details are coming but you are welcome to put yourself on our deal map now.
Business Travel tips
I’m going to launch another newsletter that will be devoted to business travel tips and will add you to that when it goes live, here are 5 tips that I want to share right now - let me know if you like them:
#1: When you go to Seoul make sure you have Citymapper installed. Google Maps does not work at all. Citymapper is flawless in this city. Google Maps on the other hand works beyond amazing in Tokyo.
#2: Cabin baggage for me only so I use compression bags to shrink my clothes down packing cubes just keep you organized and not space efficient - yes it’s a pain to keep doing it for a 3-day trip but since I go for 1-week minimum trips it saves my life. I hate carrying a big bag with me alongside my laptop bag. 
#3: Wifi Finder apps: there are a bunch of these on the iOS App Store but have a look at Cafe Wifi and Workhard Anywhere. 
#4: I picked up a Google Pixel 1 phone so I could use Google Fi which works amazing - 1 SIM card to rule them all - its expensive at $50USD per 3GB including voice and text but its handy as if I miss a phone call it transcribes it and sends it to my Google Chat I can also receive International text messages via Hangouts - now I’m trying to figure a way to hack it into my iPhone because honestly I just can’t do Android.  (See last item in this newsletter) 
#5: I collect tons of name cards, so I scan them into Full Contact right away – which then finds all the social media info of the contact and adds it into my address book automatically. I pay for the full version and I have the app and a desktop app as well. Lifesaver for organizing contacts and then there is a great plug-in for Gmail that syncs up profile pics and everything. Best product for business travelers. 
(Full disclosure, Full Contact is a partner at RISE.)
The Last Jedi - its ok, fun to look at but I’m in the fanboy camp - Luke would never do what he did in this movie and I think this is one franchise you just cannot f@%# with. You can have Harry Potter turn his back on the next generation of wizards and critics will call it “bold,” but fans will call BS. 
The Judd Apatow comedy special on Netflix is gold. Watch it. He even thanked me for my review.
Bright was pure geek fun - if you like Lord of the Rings and cop movies, then you need to watch it - if neither of those appeals to you then skip it.
The new season of Black Mirror is great as usual and the documentary series The Toys That Made Us is MUST WATCH Netflix gold.
iPhone X
I LOVE my new iPhone X, its actually fun to use again - I was kind of at the end of my passion for the device with the 7 but the X is a major move forward in terms of everything. The size is great, battery life is great, the gestures without the home button are excellent. I guess the only downside is the camera isnt that magical and the lowlight photos are still not as good as the Pixel. But everything else is great. That Face ID thing is crazy good even in the dark.
Some apps that have moved into prime positions on my phone include Notion, Google Trips, Behance for design inspiration, I finally subscribed to VSCO X, Goodreads for tracking my books and to make me read more books, and Freeletics Bodyweight for workouts when I don’t have access to a gym.
OK, that’s it for this time - thanks for reading - please feel free to forward this to a friend you think might like it. Also feel free to reply and tell me what you think or things you think I should check out.
Thanks all and sending happy thoughts and likes, double taps and heart icons to you from around the world. 
Your friend,
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Casey Lau
Casey Lau @casey_lau

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