Cool Planet Labs

HomeTowns helps you connect to your local community to share, exchange and build a better world. The global goes local.

In a nutshell: Hometowns is a community created, community curated, community controlled social connection platform.  Think user-controlled Facebook with deeper place-based integration, promoting local sharing economy and local connection.  Self-sustaining monetization will be controlled from the bottom up (e.g., crowdsourced selection of who can advertise/sponsor), not the top down. Content and privacy will be determined by the users, not by corporate dictate.  Hometowns has a value proposition, a team assembled and relationships with large existing networks including Sierra Club, Transition Towns, etc.  Hometowns' next step is to prototype the technology platform for show and tell with investors and to release to alpha user communities for feedback and iteration.  

Who We Are: HomeTowns is a bridge from online communities to real world, local communities. Our mission is to engage and build resilient sustainable communities to address global issues associated with climate change, the economy and social justice. We will do this by creating a personalized, central hub for people to share resources with others in their community, to easily access local information, and to increase their sense of place within their geographical region.

Problem We Aim to Solve: Global climate change, over-consumption and social alienation are related. Current strategies to educate and mobilize people on social and environmental issues are fragmented - those that have solutions often address a single issue but do not take a holistic approach. Individuals are forced to cobble together information. The result is often overwhelm, passivity and denial. People check out instead of in.

Solution: Communities, connected, sharing resources with easy access to solutions are powerful. HomeTowns is an immersive, web-based environment that connects communities to local solutions. The integrated HomeTowns web and mobile platform offers a personalized interactive profile page, taking locally-focused information, websites and apps and aggregating that content in one place for a user’s daily routine. HomeTowns is taking the global local, by localizing information and presenting ways for people to engage with others to save money, share resources and build relationships that go beyond the virtual.

HomeTowns provides a simple, integrated source for local news, calendars, events, bulletin boards, chat rooms, articles, and shareable resources that are based on interests and preferences. It serves our need to connect with others in similar activities where we live. HomeTowns enables and powers the shareable economy.

How it works: The HomeTowns concept is simple: We help people to rediscover their
sense of place within the community around them – where they live. Through the HomeTowns platform people will learn about services and actions they never knew were available to them, such as peer-to-peer car sharing, tool sharing, community projects and activities. Advances in smartphone and Internet technology have made these localized transactions feasible and convenient, but not accessible. The biggest challenge is finding out they exist. Sites such as MeetUp, Eventbrite, GoLocal, Craigslist, etc. are great ways for people to meet in person and build community, but how do people remember to check to find all the events and services that are available to them? Actions such as investing in local banks and credit unions, shopping at local small businesses, renting a Zipcar, carpooling, shopping at farmers’ markets, investing in a new local service provider and sharing things instead of purchasing them. These kind of actions can have a powerful social and environmental impact, benefiting the local economy but how can we remember to go there first? The personalized interface complete with reminders and customized alerts on your 

HomeTowns Homepage solves this problem. An elegant mash up of all the best tools in existing community sharing applications is part of what our core technology will provide.

For an executive summary and more information please email: coolplanetlabs@gmail.com