I'm Xavier Damman. I'm an engineer in computer science and an entrepreneur. I'm passionate about the digital renaissance. I like to think about the future of media (I cofounded Storify), organizations and democracy (I'm now working on Open Collective). In my spare time, I like to hack and talk. You can follow me on Twitter @xdamman.
I lived in San Francisco for 7 years then moved last year to NYC. I was back there for a week pitching investors. The distance helps me better understand the blind spot that Silicon Valley has developed and that may very well cost them to miss the next big wave.
As nation states are increasingly disconnected from reality, how can we enable citizens to reclaim their cities? In Brussels, we are turning our city into a platform on top of which citizens can create collectives, raise money transparently and contribute to make the capital of Europe a better city to live and work.
The problem with Trump is not that he is president. The problem with Trump is that he is the president of all of us in the United States.
Moving beyond the old model of private firms to create economic value together.
Ever since we announced our new service to enable open source communities to collect money from backers and sponsors, the same question came up again and again: why would an open source project need money?
Goodwill only takes you so far. Here is a new way to fund open source projects that aligns the interests of companies with open source communities.
Our goal with OpenCollective is to build a global infrastructure on top of which anyone can start an association anywhere in the world as easily as creating a Facebook group. To achieve that, we are building a network of host organizations that will act as an abstraction layer between the complexity of the pre-digital world, and the new bottom up economy of the 21st century. One single interface to start your association, collect and disburse money transparently (read more: A New Form of Association for the Internet Generation).
I’m super excited to announce that Pia and Aseem are both joining the OpenCollective adventure. They are both remarkable people with very complementary skills. I’m thrilled and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work together to empower people to collect money to do great things together.
How can we do things together that require money without having to worry about the complexity of creating and maintaining legal entities?
So far, the Internet has been very good at helping people do things together. But once it involves money, there is no good solution. Creating a new legal entity is too much overhead, too early. What if we could create a virtual entity that can collect money as easily as creating a Facebook Group?
An easy way to get anonymous testimonials for your next story.
I can’t remember the last time I actually opened the mobile website of a publisher. I discover links mostly through Twitter and Facebook and I send them to Pocket, my offline reader. It’s such a better experience: consistent navigation, no ad, no bloated pages that take forever to load on a mobile connection (seriously you really need 100+ requests and 2.6MB of data — which takes 35s to load on a 3G connection — to send me some text and one stock photo?).
To be great, learn to open your senses to new things, new signals, new inspiration. And learn to mix all those to create new vibrations that will resonate in turn with the world.
All 21 members of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Social Media (#wefsocmed) have been asked to answer the following questions for the first introductory call. Here is what I’ve prepared. It’s short because it has to be under 2mn.
Following a Twitter account is the equivalent of “I want to get future updates from this source”. It’s a valuable call to action that could be on many pages across the web. Twitter is uniquely positioned to own this new Follow layer, if they want it.
Internet companies are fighting for our attention. And today our attention is on the home screen of our phone.
We try to correct course instead of starting again by fear of wasting time. But going back to the surface and start digging a new hole might be the fastest way to find the right solution.
This is the third blog post in my office hours series. This one is about Severine Bourlet. She wants to solve the problem of gathering in one place photos of an event.
A dozen of entrepreneurs already talked to me about their idea for solving the photo mess. Which means that there are at least 20,000 entrepreneurs out there trying all possible angles to attack this problem. Yet, no one has nailed it yet. Someone will, someday. Here is my take on it.
Peter Meyers has a long experience in marketing. He experienced the pain of doing twenty back and forth between the client and the agency to know what to share on social media (many if not most of social media accounts of brands are managed by marketing agencies). He wants to fix that with his partner Florent Grandjean.
I met a bunch of entrepreneurs during my office hours in Brussels last week, 11 exactly, non stop between 1pm till 6pm!
Thomas Ketchell is not a hacker. He is a half French/half English historian. He is using social media to “replay History”. What if historic persons were on Twitter or Instagram today? What would they tweet, share? I really like the idea. Such a fun and modern way to teach history.
Learn to swim in the swimming pool first before diving into the ocean.
I love Google Chrome. Such a fast and pleasant experience when browsing the web on my laptop. But on my iPhone, Safari is still my browser of choice. But that's about to change.
What made me switch from PC to Mac was not speed but productivity. I don't need a faster iPhone. I need an iPhone that gets the job done when I need it.
More often than not, our phones have a slow, unreliable and high latency connectivity. Yet most common websites are not optimized to make the best use of the limited bandwidth. Let's see how we can optimize that.
I had coffee with a Belgian entrepreneur visiting San Francisco. Here are some of the advice I shared with him.
What if the new Twitter Custom Timelines could open a new way to follow your interests on Twitter with more signal and less noise?
Old way of thinking + new technology = bad recipe.