Lower Greenville, Knox-Henderson or Deep Ellum?
That's the question I asked all kinds of folks before moving back to Dallas this month to re-join the Observer. Two and a half years gone while in grad school in Austin, and all kinds of things change in this town. Somebody set off a Banana Republic bomb on Knox-Henderson. Lower Greenville is dry as a bone. And Deep Ellum has a colony of Uptown apartments growing on its northeast side. What?
I picked Deep Ellum, not least because La Grange seemed like the a pretty sweet local bar to potentially become mayor of on Foursquare (and, well, that's where I lived before when I was a Dallasite, practically above the Deep Ellum tunnel they tore up and put that new damned train on). But as I began checking in to the Foursquare iPhone app around my new-old 'hood, I noticed some guy named Steve Floyd seemed to be mayor of the whole freaking neighborhood -- maybe, now I know, with good reason. Floyd, who owns a Deep Ellum-based software development company called Axzm, is behind a social networking site (now in almost-beta testing) called Deep Ellum Community.
Appropriately, Floyd's an open source software developer who just figured this would be kind of a neat and useful thing to do. I talked to him on the phone just now, and he said of the site he started building last November: "It started out as a labor of love. I've been chipping away at it."
So far, the site looks great: It's got Facebook integration, messaging, blogs, events, really most things you could want in a hyperlocal social networking site. And it's all from Floyd's brainy-programmer-brain. He says: "I have I have no direct affiliations with the [Deep Ellum] Foundation or [Deep Ellum] Association. It's just a completely independent effort."
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Floyd says he saw a demand for "a resource on what business are open, when club nights are," and started building accordingly. I'm already taking advantage of the site -- be sure and RSVP for my appearance at the Megaphone Show this Saturday night at the Dallas Comedy House in -- where else? -- Deep Ellum.