Despite high school clique stereotypes, geek is chic – if you're a fashion retailer looking to stay relevant in today's competitive market.
Tuesday night's Tech Trunk Show, hosted by Tech in Motion Philadelphia in conjunction with The Philadelphia Collection, will illustrate that fact.
"In the spirt of The Philadelphia Collection and Philadelphia Fashion Week, we wanted to hold something that shows how technology is changing the landscape of how we shop, because so much focus on fashion comes from the other end, but not on the back end that really creates the user experience," said event coordinator Lindsay Lewis.
To that end, the event's roster of speakers include Det Ansinn of BrickSimple, one of the leading creators of Google Glass apps, Stephan Jacob of Kembrel, which evolved from an e-commerce clothing site into a brick-and-mortar boutique and Andy O'Dell of mobile shopping app Clutch.
"We also wanted to focus on the mobile shopping aspect, because that's definitely becoming larger and larger as iPhones and Androids are becoming part of our every day lives," Lewis said.
One local entrepreneur who has a firm grasp on the concept is Divya Sharma, who last year founded ShopGodt.com.
The site allows users to drag and drop photos from apparel sites and then aggregates in a central dashboard real time information about the selected product, including other outlets and price points at which it can be purchased, user reviews, blogger critiques and celebrities who have recently been seen sporting the stuff.
Users can also poll their friends using Twitter or Facebook about which products they prefer, putting the social aspect back into the often isolated practice of online shopping.
"I was this kid who was completely uninformed in the fashion space, but I also wanted to buy good stuff and I didn't want to spend the full amount," Sharma said.
"As a result, I had this very complicated process of coming across shoes or bags that I was interested in by going to price aggregation sites, seeing what the blogosphere was talking about and trying to get reviews of that brand."
Sharma said she'd often spend up to 20 hours and visit half a dozen websites before making a decision on what to purchase – and she soon learned she wasn't the only customer shopping that way.
"Back in the day before the advent of technology, you would go to the shopping aisles and just decide there which toothpaste you were going to buy or which pizza you were going to buy," she said.
"Today, that doesn't happen. Anything from toothpaste to a bra, you're going to research online."
Sharma said she'll be attending the Tech Trunk Show to scope out the current scene.
"I'm very interested in seeing how technology is changing retail, and I'm interested to actually see if retailers have adopted that ideal, or at least understand that technology is inescapably going to have to be a major part of their strategy," she said.
6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24
The Maas Building (Garden Entrance), 1320 N. 5th St.
RSVP required through event page on Meetup.com