It's hard to ignore a company that promotes itself as the “digital-to-analog lifestyle converter.” The concept behind the Emeryville, California, startup SonicLiving (sonicliving.com) is simple: never miss live shows again. If you're like me, you've missed too many shows because of your questionable calendaring skills. Fortunately, with very little effort on your part, SonicLiving takes your iTunes, Pandora, and Last.FM favorite artists, generates their individual show dates, and syncs the information with iCal or Mozilla. What's more, you can find out where your friends are going or chum up with fellow users who share your musical interests.
What started out as a lunchtime hobby for founder Gabe Benveniste has turned into a seemingly profitable dot-com venture. “So much of the Internet is spread out globally. SonicLiving is an opportunity to connect locally with people that you have something in common with, which is becoming more and more rare these days,” says Benveniste, who launched the service in 2005 while working at Pixar.
Leaving Pixar was a difficult decision for him to make, but ultimately the company's ethics became the basis for his departure. “Pixar is one of the best places in the world to work, which is actually one of the reasons I left,” admits Benveniste, who was in charge of Mac Infrastructures there. “I felt like the values that Pixar had should be passed on to other companies.”
That's good news for us, because missing that show where all your friends had the time of their lives won't happen again.