Nordic Startup Journeys: The Intersection of the Nordics and Silicon Valley

Nordic Startup Journeys: The Intersection of the Nordics and Silicon Valley

Innovation Center Denmark (map)



Please note that we have max attendance of 35 for this event, so sign up early to reserve your seat (event is free)

Please join us for two-part event at Innovation Center Denmark (ICD): (1) A discussion with two “early stage” Nordic edtech entrepreneurs ("edupreneurs") who are in Silicon Valley this summer; and (2) Short presentations by two interesting and upcoming Danish tech startups that are visiting Silicon Valley.

In the first part of the program, Søren Juul Jørgensen, Executive Director of Innovation Center Denmark, and Eilif Trondsen, Chair of Silicon Vikings SIG on Entrepreneurship and Learning, will have a discussion about their "edupreneurial" startup journeys and recent Silicon Valley experience with Endre Elvestad, the Founder of the Norwegian startup SignLab Ai, and with David Kofoed Wind, the CEO and Co-Founder of the Danish startup, Peergrade. Endre is currently participating in the Global Solutions Program of Singularity University and David and his colleagues are part of the acceleration program at Y Combinator.

After this discussion and a brief break, we will have two presentations by Cybot and IndieFrame that are currently visiting Silicon Valley. See below for a brief description of Cybot and IndieFrame.

In our conversation with Endre and David, Søren and I expect to cover a number of issues and topics, including the following:

  • Their visions, motivations and experiences so far in their entrepreneurial journeys
  • How they see the current Nordic startup environments—especially in Norway and Denmark—and how they differ from what they see in Silicon Valley
  • What are the opportunities and challenges they see ahead as they plan to scale their operations—and how do they expect to deal with the staff geographical location issues
  • What have their experiences been so far in the programs they are currently participating in at Singularity University and Y Combinator?

We will also give you a chance to ask Endre and David questions, so come prepared to engage with our panelists. All our sessions are highly interactive, informative and fun, so come and join what should be a great and interesting event.

Brief Bios of Panelists and Moderators:

David Kofoed Wind. David is Co-Founder and CEO of Peergrade and a PhD-student at The Technical University of Denmark. Peergrade helps teachers teach critical thinking to students through student-to-student feedback. David does research on machine learning, data science and learning analytics. He and his Peergrade colleagues are currently participating in the Y Combinator acceleration program.

Endre Elvestad. Founder of SignLab, a global platform for teaching parents of deaf children sign language. Former member of the Member of the Norwegian National Commission on Use of New Technologies in Higher Education. Master in CS with a focus on the intersection between AI, VR and human learning. Currently participating in the Global Solutions Program of Singularity University (SU). Also participated in the first cohort of SU’s Copenhagen program the spring of 2017.

Søren Juul Jørgensen. Søren is the Executive Director of the Innovation Center Denmark (ICD), a bridge between research institutions, companies and capital in Denmark and Silicon Valley. ICD accelerates the entry of Danish companies into Silicon Valley; facilitates research cooperation and provides inspiration to help drive innovation in Denmark. Søren is Board Member of Nordic Innovation House and an External Examiner at Aarhus University and Associated Professor at University of Copenhagen.

Eilif Trondsen. Eilif—a transplanted Norwegian who has spent his whole professional life in Silicon Valley—has led and participated in a number of syndicated research programs and numerous consulting projects during his 35 years at SRI International (formerly Stanford Research Institute) and Strategic Business Insights (a spin-out from SRI, located on the Menlo Park campus of SRI). Eilif has also been Adjunct Professor of Economics at a number of Bay Area universities. Most of his work has focused on eCommerce, Learning, Innovation, and Virtual Technologies, and in recent years much of his work has focused on the Nordic region, especially Finland and Norway, including projects for Tekes and the Norwegian Research Council, and two projects funded by Nordic Innovation. He is currently the project leader of a new Nordic Innovation project awarded to Silicon Vikings, which will build a Nordic EdTech Network. He has been a Board member of Silicon Vikings for the last 5 years, and have been the Chair of the Special Interest Group on Entrepreneurship and Learning since its beginning




Two Danish tech company presentations—Brief Company Descriptions

Cybotwww.cybot.comCEO Daniel Johannsen


New regulations on ePrivacy and data protection in the EU (ePR/GDPR), require that any website operator in the world serving visitors from the EU, informs about any tracking, document data shared with third parties and obtain consent from the visitors. Website owners struggle to implement compliant solutions and think of the task as expensive and burdensome or even impossible.

Cybot has developed a self-serve cloud service, Cookiebot, which makes it easy and affordable for website owners to comply. The service continuously scans the customer’s websites for cookies and similar tracking technologies, generates the necessary documentation and information, and automatically handles the visitor’s consent state. By embedding two script tags and a few mark-ups on the customer’s website, Cookiebot provides a fully compliant and automated solution. Cybot is currently in use on 7,000 websites in 20+ countries (US included) across all industries and company sizes.

IndieFrame——Co-Founder, Cecilia Valsted

Indieframe is an independent digital distribution platform that brings the content creator and the media together. It is a worldwide database of user-generated content for photos and video.

INDIEFRAME believes that money should go directly to the content creator (director, producer, journalist, local smart-phone user) within a free market and the content producer should determine the rights and the price for their own content. IndieFrame provides this platform and is available on both desktop and iOS. IndieFrame’s technology makes it easy to upload content directly from a camera, tablet and smartphone and allows for seamless distribution directly to News Media, TV stations, web blogs, as well as for educational uses, presentations and other media needs from around the world.


Revisiting Immersive Environments—Perspectives on Past and Future of VR/AR

Revisiting Immersive Environments—Perspectives on Past and Future of VR/AR

ReedSmith (map)

During the last two years, Silicon Vikings has hosted very popular sessions that have explored various issues and developments around Virtual and Augmented Reality. We are now very pleased to invite you back for our Third Annual AV/VR Review, reconvening our panelists to both look back at what has happened in the past year and draw lessons for what may lie ahead. So please join us again on September 7, at ReedSmith in San Francisco.

Our panelists will address these and other questions:

  • What are some of the most interesting and impactful developments we have seen since we met last year (on August 30, 2016)?
  • What surprising developments have we seen in the past year, either in the US or overseas, both in Europe and Asia?
  • Where—in hardware, software, content, etc—have we seen the most significant progress over the last year, and who are some of the leading players? And where is adoption gaining most traction so far?
  • Have we seen new and interesting players coming onto the scene, and what new and exciting innovations are they focusing on? And how are they different from what major players like Facebook, Google, Samsung, HTC, Microsoft and others are doing?
  • Which are some of your favorite applications of VR based on the developments you have seen over the last year? Will entertainment dominate the AV/VR space or will industrial or educational applications see strong growth and interest in the next year?
  • Based on where we are today, and from what predictions we made last year—correctly or incorrectly—what are some of the things we can expect in the year to come, in terms of technology (including headsets), content and services?

We have a great panel of experts who will share their insights into the issues raised above and also answer your questions (and we will allow for plenty of time for Q&A in the session, as we always do). Here are the panel members:

  • Damon Hernandez. Damon—our “Veteran Silicon Vikings panelist” whenever we have sessions on VR/AR or hackathon issues—has been involved in the interactive 3D community for many years, and is a 3D Web, virtual and augmented reality developer and advocate. He is co-founder of the high tech building company IDEAbuilder, advocates 3D Web open standards for the Web3D Consortium, and regularly leads hacking sessions around the world focused on either improving built environment related professions (AEC Hackathon) or developing with immersive technologies like virtual and augmented reality.
  • Christopher Peri, Ph.D. Christopher—who also was a panelist our last two VR/AR sessions—has worked on 3D and VR starting with the VFX1 back in 1995 including teaching a class on VRML. His master thesis at UC Berkeley, 'Spatial Perception in Virtual Environments: Visual Cognition Gain with Head Mounted Displays' focused on how spatial perception and memory are improved using a HMD. This work was a foundation for his Ph.D. in Spatial Communication. His professional work includes creating many virtual worlds using VRML and Java and then employed those skills to dynamic web content using Flash. Later in his career he focused on project management to company leadership including 3 years as CTO at VentureBeat. Currently Christopher has returned to his roots working at Samsung Research Lab working on mobile strategy, tech resourcing, and support on the Gear VR project.


  • Linda Jacobson. Linda first had her mind blown by VR in the first R&D wave, when she chased gremlins at VPL Research and played virtual music at Fakespace Labs. Today Linda directs enterprise VR/AR projects for Treasure8 on Treasure Island, advises VR start-ups, evaluates VR/AR start-up pitches for Accelerator Ventures, and brings mobile VR experiences to the residents of assisted-living communities. Author of the books *Garage Virtual Reality* and *CyberArts*, Linda also was the world’s first professional Virtual Reality Evangelist (at Silicon Graphics), and co-founded San Francisco’s first VR meetups for 5 years at the Exploratorium. She has run a real-time VR content production and marketing studio, and has written many successful cloud-computing and UI patent applications.




  • Eilif Trondsen, Ph.D. (moderator). Eilif has followed virtual technologies for many years, and led a four-year research program VirtualWorlds@Work, at SRI to examine how VW technologies could find applications in business and work. He is the Chair of Silicon Vikings SIG on Entrepreneurship and Learning, and has done research in the area of learning technologies for about 20 years