Scripting News for 11/8/07

NakedJen says goodbye to Santa Cruz 

This is what blogging is all about.

A platform for a person to tell their story.

NJ (NakedJen) is a NBB (Natural Born Blogger).

Why most conferences suck 

I had lunch yesterday with Steve Gillmor. It had been too long. We talked about many things, including the fact that neither of us were going to many conferences this year. I think I’ve only been to three so far, maybe four. I’ve had the opportunity to go to dozens. But they’re all the same, you spend the first half-day saying hello, then have a couple of good conversations, then you run out of things to do.

This morning after a bit of processing, it struck me — don’t know why I didn’t see this before, but the problem with most conferences is that except for the people putting it on, we don’t have enough to do.

So once the first hellos are over we settle in with our laptops and do what we do when we have nothing to do at home or the office — we browse around the web, answer emails and IMs, and otherwise look for something interesting or new.

Therefore the challenge, if you want to have a truly useful conference that everyone gets something out of, structure it so that everyone has something to do at all times. Hopefully things that involve other people or the venue, if not, what’s the point of going somewhere to do this stuff?

PS: Paolo describes an alternative to conferences.

What to do at LeWeb3? 

Another thing that led me to the conclusion about conferences is that I’m going to do something interesting at LeWeb3 in Paris, with the permission and support of Loic, who runs the conference (and who is interviewing me on stage).

In the past Loic has projected an IRC backchannel, and from time to time pictures taken at the show (most famously a picture of Marc Canter sleeping), but this time Loic has given me something to do that I find truly inspiring. My job is to help get a flow of interesting pictures from the community to appear on the big screen on stage, and (if I can convince him to do this) a few screens scattered around the venue.

The first thought is to include pictures that were taken at the event itself, and of course we should use many of those, but I’d like to make it broader, to include people and places that are on the network defined by the conference. If it’s like last year, there will be people tuned in from all around the world, and wouldn’t it be great if we had a way to not only pull in their ideas (and we could do this better, btw) but also their imagery? It would give it a much richer world-wide feel.

One of the exciting opportunities for tech industry conferences is to find new ways to use networking on a world-wide level.

If you want, you can start uploading to Flickr pictures you think belong on stage.

Please use this tag: PreLeWeb3.

We might as well start talking about it now! šŸ™‚

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When the time is right… 

I’ve been saying the same thing about advertising for nearly a decade, but this time it really resonated.

“Advertising will get more and more targeted until it disappears, because perfectly targeted advertising is just information.”

There’s little point in saying something until the time is right, then you just have to say it once, and the idea takes over and does all the work.

3 responses to this post.

  1. Re: posting live photos at the conference.

    Have you thought of using something like Eye-Fi ( They claim you can directly upload pictures via WiFi from any SD-card enabled camera to photo-sharing sites. You could then write a script to snag your latest Flickr postings and project it.

    You could also set up a script so it grabs a random image that has the right tag from any account. That way the participants can upload their own images have it show up on stage, but then it would be too easy to prank it šŸ™‚


  2. Ok, some miscellaneous pix to get you started šŸ˜‰



  3. Posted by stanleykrute on November 9, 2007 at 8:01 am

    Dr. Dave

    Thanks for being my morning can of Diet Coke everyday.

    Things I’d never know about w/out Scripting News: ah, the list is long.

    Interesting about Naked Jen’s history in Bonny Doon: that’s where I had my best school-teaching experience ever, 28 years ago. Fabulous corner of the world then. One of my kids was RA Heinlein’s neighbor, but I was good and didn’t bother the Master w/ a visit.

    — stan


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