Searching for the Moon

Shannon Clark's rambles and conversations on food, geeks, San Francisco and occasionally economics

PopTech – day one, Thursday

Posted by shannonclark on October 21, 2004

So, much to think about and write about – more on this when I have time to go through my notes and edit them into something coherent.

A few general thoughts and comments.

1. Conferences are fun and I have many people I know here, but I miss Julia, hopefully in the future for similar events she can share them with me (both a factor of her schedule, vacation days and our finances.

2. Maine is very beautiful, but we are spending most of the conference inside – if the weather cooperated, I think at least one of the breaks should have been outside.

3. Three speakers for 30+ minutes each is about one speaker too many, especially for the last panel. And while a few questions from the audience are good, more would be a better and more audience interaction (not involving saving falling babies… more on that later) would be even better.

4. Note to self, bring (purchased ahead of time) something small to snack on/chew on while at conferences – some candies and gum would be perfect, but I find myself wanting something small, this afternoon after lunch I snagged a small apple, tonight after dinner a small cookie, but not exactly ideal.

5. A lack of diversity gets really noticible after a while, note to self, when planning MeshForum I should either make an active effort to get female speakers, or even more likely I should focus on having some highly interactive portions of the conference which will include most (hopefully all) of the attendees which therefore I hope means people from a very wide range of very diverse backgrounds (and genders etc)

So, more on the conference itself and today’s topics.

I think the conference has a bunch of interesting speakers and they are presenting intriguing points of view. However, perhaps it is a factor of what I read and what I pay attention to, but so far today there has not been a lot of really amazingly “new” stuff from any of the speakers for me, a number presented interesting points of view and in a few cases specific factoids or details that I had not heard elsewhere, but generally speaking they were all covering matters I have thought about/read about before.

On the otherhand the audience is really, really strong. Lots of interesting and intriguing people and lots of business (of some sorts) seems to be occurring, not sure if I am “plugged in” or not, though I certainly know a bunch of people who are here and there are a lot of people here whom I should try to meet.

A comment on that – while I like seeing the bios of the people who are speaking and the organizers, I would really, really like to see a short list and bio of the people attending – at least give me a sense of people who are here whom I should try to meet. People who work for firms I admire, who have backgrounds I am curious about, who might have a need for my services in some manner etc.

Lots of good connections in spite of that but it is not organized mostly random conversations and discussions, though everone is approachable and it is not hard to meet the other attendees.

Tonight was the blogger dinner, which was a lot of fun and certainly good company to be with (with quite a few “a-list” bloggers at the table, I felt rather small in terms of readership, but oh well)

I did, however, forget to bring my camera with me… need to remember that tomorrow.

Today I had intermittant email problems – so if you have been trying to reach me, don’t worry, I will hopefully get everything and catch up eventually, but if you still do not hear back from me either resend the email or call me.

Later tonight I hope to post about the speakers in detail, list the questions I had but were not asked (though one of my questions was partially asked by Bob Metcalfe, so that’s cool).

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