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May 19, 2014
Mobile Portland — Critical Path to eBay Mobile Success
Urban Airship Inc

Early in 2008, Critical Path Software was introduced to eBay by its Apple friends. Critical Path was a premier developer with the skills and experience to launch eBay into the initial iTunes AppStore on July 10, 2008.

It was a heady time. The deadline was tight. The team had to fight through issues with the iPhone SDK and integration with eBay servers. It was a grand success. The eBay app went on to be number 3 of all free apps in the first year of the App Store. Contemporary industry-wide mobile ecommerce revenue estimates were vastly exceeded by the eBay app alone. The mobile ecommerce revolution was born.

Fast forward to today. The eBay Mobile products produced here in Portland are responsible for over 30 percent of eBay revenue. Ladd Van Tol and Dan Weston have graciously agreed to discuss their insights into the architecture of these enterprise-class mobile apps. Their discussion will cover the evolution of the product architecture, lessons learned over the past six years, and how to architect state-of-the-art apps in an enterprise environment.

Learn how they went from an under-the-radar consulting project to 35% of Fortune 500 company.

About Our Speakers

Ladd Van Tol, eBay Mobile

Ladd Van Tol is the architecture lead for eBay's native mobile applications, continuing work started at Portland-based Critical Path Software in 2008.

He is a mobile architect specializing in iOS, providing underlying design and engineering for eBay for iPhone and iPad apps. At Critical Path Software, since purchased by eBay in December 2010, Ladd was the Lead engineer on custom software development for a variety of startups and Fortune 500 companies.

Ladd was previously the technical lead for TechTracker, another local Portland company.

Dan Weston, eBay Mobile

Dan Weston works on functional architecture for eBay's native mobile applications, continuing work started at Critical Path Software in 2008.

Dan has over 3 decades of software development experience ranging from founding successful startups to providing significant leadership and engineering services to Fortune 500 Companies.

Dan previously was a founding member of another Portland startup, Thetus Corporation, as well as a stint working in cryptography and security at Intel.

Jan 12, 2015
FutureTalk Thought Leaders Panel + Happy Half-Hour
New Relic

Mobile Strategy for Today and Tomorrow

A mobile thought leaders panel moderated by Rick Turoczy

› Please RSVP via Eventbrite HERE

Just a few short years ago, most organizations didn’t even have a mobile app. Today mobile has infiltrated virtually every sector of industry and mobile e-commerce generates over half of all e-commerce sales. Is it important for every organization to have a mobile strategy?

To address this question, New Relic is kicking off 2015 with our first ever FutureTalks PDX speaker panel! This event will bring together local thought leaders in the mobile app space to discuss the strategies and challenges their organizations face in building and managing high performing mobile apps or services, and the teams that support them.

These visionaries include:

  • Jonathan Karon, Mobile Engineering Manager, New Relic
  • Sasha Mace, Director of Mobile, Simple
  • Michael Richardson, Co-Founder and Director of Product, Urban Airship
  • Sridhar Solur, Managing Director, Next Gen Computing- Wearables, IOT

Panelists will be asked to reflect on the challenges and key strategies they employ today, and how they see mobile strategy evolving for their organizations in the future. If you have a specific question(s) that you would like us to consider posing to our speakers, please email those to [email protected].

› Doors will open at 5:30 for a 30-minute networking happy hour! The food, beer and drinks are provided by Bellagios and New Relic. The presentation will begin promptly at 6p.

› FutureTalk is brought to you by New Relic in collaboration with TAO

Jan 27, 2015
eBay Tech Tuesday: The Evolution of Culture in Portland Tech
eBay Community Lounge

“Culture” was the Merriam-Webster word of the year in 2014. In the startup world, the word permeates job interviews, board room meetings, and conversations around the water cooler. But what does culture actually mean when applied to tech companies of all sizes?

To answer this question, eBay is launching it’s monthly Tech Tuesday series with a panel-based conversation about culture. We’ve gathered new voices in thought leadership to bring fresh ideas to this topic, while considering and respecting what we’ve learned from the past.

Panelists include:

Lindsay Wolff Longsdon , Co-Founder/Advisor, Culture Lab @WolffLogsdon Bruce Yarnall, Director of Mobile QA, eBay Marketplaces Donald Truxillo, Ph.D., Professor, Industrial/Organizational Psychology

Moderator: Sara Morrow, Talent Partner at eBay Marketplaces @PDXsaram

We purposely expanded the typical HR heavy culture panel to a manager of technical teams, a startup founder, and a professor who researches both methods employers use to hire workers and perceptions of potential employees during recruitment and hiring.

These panelists will help us illuminate how culture is applied throughout the whole process of engaging an employee: from attraction to a company, hiring, integrating, ongoing development, to promotions or exits. The end result? Some common understandings of what culture means, as well as, how we can navigate the nuances as employers and/or employees.

RSVP through Meetup to attend “The Evolution of Culture in Portland Tech.” We look forward to seeing you!

Feb 24, 2015
eBay Tech Tuesday: The Impact of Technology on the Music Industry
eBay Community Lounge

For the February edition of eBay Tech Tuesdays we'll be bringing in some of the fine folks over at Marmoset, a boutique music agency here in Portland, to talk music and technology.

Ryan Wines, Managing Partner and CEO; Shane Geiger, Digital Team Lead; and Ryan Rebo, Developer, will be talking about their website and app, sharing their thoughts on how technology has changed their business so far, what they're seeing currently, what they foresee coming down the road, and what unknowns have them scratching their heads.

Marmoset also has a super secret band coming in from out of state to play. So secret we're not even allowed to know who they are... But this is what we've been told:

• Instrumental electronic pop that borrows from the playbook of Justice and Daft Punk, at least in terms of mystique

• One could say that they sound like an ’80s synth-rock band, but it goes deeper than that. They have a fanatic following from the people who have listened and seen them live. The way they present themselves is a sincere approach to combine art and music.

And we've been guaranteed they're rad.

RSVP now to attend, then check out Marmoset to learn more about who they are and what they do.

Web: Twitter: Vimeo:

Mar 31, 2015
eBay Tech Tuesday: "Considering the Human Factor"
eBay Community Lounge

If you build it, they will come.


How many times have you seen a product or app and thought to yourself, “Who would ever use that,” or dealt with the frustration of trying to operate something that feels like you need a degree in rocket science to figure out.

Or maybe you don’t interact with the product much, but the noise it emits, or vibrations its function causes, drives you batty.

Now, imagine that your company designed that product, built that website, deployed that app… and countless users are muttering your name under their breath. Hundreds and thousands of hours and dollars have been wasted and you have to go back to the drawing board.

Did you do the research to ensure your product or technology would appeal to human wants, needs and desires? Factoring in the human element seems like common sense, but that piece of the equation is often left out.

If you’re involved in building a product or developing a technology that is or will be used by humans, you’ll want to join us for the March 31st Tech Tuesday. We’ll have Marcelino Alvarez, CEO of Uncorked Studios, a local product design agency doing awesome things, talking with us about the importance of incorporating human factors and intuitive use into the design of products and digital environments.

We’ll also have Renny Gleeson, Global Director, Interactive Strategy, and Oonie Chase, Director of Experience Design, from Wieden+Kennedy talking about brand building and failing harder at the intersection of strategy and human-centered design.

The evening's discussions should provide some interesting and engaging conversation. We look forward to seeing you there!

  • Doors open at 5:45pm, Speakers start promptly at 6:30pm

  • The main lobby doors lock at 7pm. Someone will be available to let you in, but please plan accordingly.

  • Pizza and non-alcoholic beverages will be provided.

Apr 28, 2015
eBay Tech Tuesday: Computers, Computers, Computers
eBay Community Lounge

In today’s world of smartphones, tablets and MacBooks, it’s easy to forget that these computers evolved from machines that filled entire rooms. But they did!

The Living Computer Museum, located in Seattle, Washington, is dedicated to preserving, maintaining, and displaying working examples of the computers that have led us to the information technology we enjoy today. (You can even interact with the computers there!)

The collection was assembled by Microsoft cofounder Paul G. Allen as a way to preserve the history that put him and Bill Gates on the path to founding the company, and presents the milestones in the evolution of computers and how people use them.

For our April Meetup, Bob Barnett from the Living Computer Museum will be joining us to talk about the museum, computers, and how we got to where we are today. We first met Bob when he came to eBay Portland to talk to our team, and we thought what he shared was so interesting we wanted to bring him back for all of you. (Also, he made us laugh, and we like people who make us laugh.)

Here's a short bio Bob put together at our request:

"After spending 4 years in the Air Force, Bob was accepted into the Computer Science program at Hughes Aircraft in El Segundo, California. After completion of the program he joined the Operating Systems group and then moved on to set up the Hughes Network in Arizona and California.

Bob later took a job with aerospace company, TRW where he joined the RODS project to write the first Real Time Operating system in the US for The Bonneville Power Administration in Vancouver, WA.

After writing a Microwave Communication System, Bob worked with the Portland Police Dispatch System design team while working at Boeing Computer Services.

In the mid-70s, Bob joined Pat Terrell to grow a chain of Byte Shops in the Northwest.

Bob has an entrepreneurial side and, as such, has founded a software company and joined several start-ups over the course of his career. His most recent venture has been joining forces with his longtime friend, Paul Allen, to start the Living Computer Museum in Seattle, WA."

Whether you nerd out over computers, or you’re just interested in spending an evening learning something new, (or hearing from someone new), you’ll want to join us on Tuesday the 28th.

RSVP now!

  • Pizza and sodas will be provided

  • Doors open at 5:45pm, Presentation begins at 6:30pm

  • The main lobby doors lock at 7pm. Someone will be available to let you in after 7pm, but please plan accordingly.

May 26, 2015
eBay Tech Tuesday: Reality (Usually) Bites
eBay Community Lounge

The (mostly) unspoken reality of startups is that success is the rarity. So, when you’re fighting the battle every day to make things work, yet only hearing about Company A getting yet another round of capital, or Business Z being acquired, it’s easy to feel like you’re a failure.

But your success doesn't have to look like everyone else's. Which is good, since it probably won’t. And honestly, sometimes failure isn't so bad.

This month’s Tech Tuesday is about the difficulties faced in building, launching, and keeping a startup afloat. We’ve put together a panel of local entrepreneurs who will be sharing their stories, talking about the struggles they’ve faced as founders, and discussing what they’ve learned so far.

We’ll also have an Advisor to numerous startups sharing his perspective, insights, and tips.


• Kevin Dewhitt, Founder, PDO Technologies, Inc

• Josh Carter, CEO/Co-Founder, Plunk

• Paul Wagner, CEO/Co-Founder, CloudEngage

• Paige Hendrix, Founder, ClientJoy

• Dylan Boyd, Advisor


• Sara Morrow, Talent Partner, eBay Marketplaces

The combined backgrounds, experience, and personalities of our panelists should provide for a fun, interesting, and educational evening. I hope you’ll join us!

RSVP here:

  • Pizza and sodas will be provided

  • Doors open at 5:45pm, Presentation begins at 6:30pm

  • The main lobby doors lock at 7pm. Someone will be available to let you in after 7pm, but please plan accordingly.

Feb 22, 2018
Let's explore eBay Mobile with Peekay Chan (powered by FREE PIZZA!)

This month we want to introduce Peekay Chan from ebay!

Peekay is currently a Senior Product Manager at eBay. He spanned his career across both technical and product management disciplines. Some of his achievements include launching a platform that enabled millions of IoT devices with Intel/Samsung, machine learning based authentication solution for Starbucks and Amazon. Peekay has experience working for Fortune 500 and startups including one of he co-founded! He is passionate about customer/lean development with a focus on technological innovation.

Please join us and help learn from a successful PDX Product leader!