At South by Southwest, Ted Nadeau and I led a “core conversation” on the topic of reputation, identity, and presence. Ted is great at questioning basic assumptions and had this idea of handing out placards an audience of participants could use to signal their reactions to what was being said to them.
We imagine double-sided signs on sticks to hold up, sort of like the Roadrunner does, but we settled for handing out cut paper. We’re still working on the mechanics of this, *and the whole thing is Creative Commons licensed, derivs-allowed, attrib-required, I think (it’s in the fine print), but even now at version 1.0 of this Reaction Deck, I think Ted’s really onto something:
Started off Saturday morning with Kick ’08.
Namedropping: Talked to George Kelly, Erin Malone, Anil Dash, Jessamyn West (yay!), Simon Willison, Owen Thomas, Hugh Forrest, Micah Alpern (briefly, passing on the escalator), Janna Hicks DeVylder so far….
If you’re interested in social web design, how to model identity, presence, and reputation, and how to create and align incentives with the behaviors you wish to encourage in your online community, then join Ted Nadeau and me for a Core Conversation on the topic of “Online Identity: And I *do* give a damn about my bad reputation” at South by Southwest interactive this March, in Austin, Texas (of course).
UPDATE: Alex Lee in the comments asked me when my talk is scheduled for. It’s on Tuesday, and I think it’s in the morning but not sure about. Will update with exact info when I have it.
UPDATE II: It seems that we will be doing our core conversation in a late slot (5pm) on the last day (Tuesday, March 11) of the interactive portion of the conference. I say if the conversation is good, let’s continue it into the evening over food and libations. Maybe we’ll even launch a startup over beer and barbecue.
At BarCamp Block I first heard about plans for She’s Geeky, a tech (un)conference for women by women. Immediately, I was intrigued. It sounds like a great idea, I love the title, and the organizers are some of the coolest folk I’ve met on the geek circuit.
One of the prime movers is Kaliya Identity Woman Hamlin, a strong advocate of the OpenSpace unconference model for events.
She’s Geeky takes place October 22 and 23 in Mountain View, CA (near Palo Alto). Here’s a description In their own words:
> This event is designed to bring together women from a range of technology-focused disciplines who self identify as geeky. Our goal is to support skill exchange and learning between women working in diverse fields and to create a space for networking and to talk about issues faced by women in technology.
Kaliya goes into some more detail about here “motivations and hopes” on her IdentityWoman blog, and addresses any concerns folks might have about exclusivity (which is a good thing, because even in this male-dominated tech world, I sometimes get that twinge of entitlement when something is for me, about me, catering to me and my ilk, etc.), saying, “My motivation is not to create an event that is ‘exclusive’ but to help create a space for women who some times are very isolated in different niches of the tech world. One women I spoke with yesterday recently found herself being one of only 12 women at a tech conference of 600.”
I have no doubt that She’s Geeky will be a watershed event and I look forward to reading about it and studying its impact.
I regretted not being able to attend the first-ever IDEA conference last year in Seattle and I was thrilled when the organizers decided to hold the second IDEA conference in New York City, my home town, at the legendary Parsons School of Design.
IDEA has already in one year established a reputation for bringing big-idea folks together to share their ideas about design, architecture, shared information spaces, visualization of dataa, and what it means to be human in an internetworked machine age. I expect this year’s conference program to be every bit as stimulating.
IDEA stands for Information, Design, Experience, Access, and its presented by the IA Institute, an organization on whose board I have the privilege of serving at this time. My involvement in the conference planning has been focused on getting the website up and recruiting volunteers for the technical tasks required (my portfolio, as it were, on the board of directors of the IAI is technical matters). Events director Sarah Rice, IDEA founder Peter Merholz, and volunteer event coordinator Greg Corrin deserve the credit for pulling this year’s conference together.
Technical volunteers Beck Tench, Chi-chi Oguekwe, Grace Lau, Susan Wong, and Gordon McLean have all chipped in to build and maintain the site, with very little supervision or input from me, so they deserve a great deal of credit as well.
For anyone attending (or thinking of attending) IDEA this year, consider signing up in addition at the Crowdvine social networking site. There’s still time to register (the conference runs on October 4th and 5th, with an optional pre-conference event on the 3rd), and if you do manage to come to New York, look me up at Parsons and say hi.
Here’s my obligatory plug for my South by Southwest proposals. I’ve got two panels in contention at the cool-but-unwieldy Panel Picker, so I thought I’d provide some shortcuts here. A lot of folks feel that there are too many panels at SXSW and not enough solo presenters. I tend to agree, but I think the problem is really panels that are underprepared or have too many participants. After moderating a panel with five participants last year I’ve decided that that’s too many for a 45 or 50 minute slot. I think four (including moderator) is the max, and three or even two is probably ideal.
The first panel I’m proposing pertains to my ongoing book project (working title: Presence of Mind), on the subject of online/digital identity, reputation, attention, privacy, trust, and presence. Last year, my panel, Every Breath You Take (podcast, my slides) seemed to go over fairly well, despite the gawdawful 10 am but really 9 am because of daylight savings Sunday morning slot (you must recall that Saturday night – and, really, every other night – at SXSW involves a lot of drinking for most attendees.
I took to heart the positive and negative feedback and so the sequel this year will feature just three participants: myself, Ted Nadeau returning from last year, and Andrew Hinton, whose presentation on communities of practice at the IA Summit this year was such a huge success. We’re going to strive to go beyond the typical talking-head panel format and enage the audience in innovative ways. We’re also going to try to take the conversation past the grounwork-laying, high-level philosophizing of last year and hand the attendees some practical tools for building on what we’re tentatively calling the “human operating system.”
If this sounds appealing to you, please go vote for Online Reputation: And I *Do* Give a Damn about My Bad Reputation.
My second proposal draws on my experience running Yahoo!’s Design Pattern Library and moderating a mailing list for pattern authors. I’ve recruited Jenifer Tidwell, the leading figure in UI patterns; Austin Govella, who can talk about implementing a pattern library in a commerical context at Comcast; and James Reffel, also now at Yahoo!, who will share what he learned getting eBay’s pattern engine off the ground.
Luke Wrobleski’s talk on patterns at SXSW last year filled a large room and generated a lot of interest and I’m hoping to serve that same constituency by sharing practical experience and advice in our panel Design Patterns: the Devil’s in the Details, which we described this way:
> Patterns ground frameworks like Rails and Django drive libraries like Prototype, and enable rapid product development at companies big and small. But what happens when patterns go wrong? How do you know when a pattern is right? We’ll examine common issues facing groups who use design patterns and share our experiences at making sure patterns go right.
There are a lot of other great proposals. I kind of wish I could sort my existing votes into star order to remind myself of the ones I’ve already deemed must-sees, but here are a few I’ve been able to recall or find.
* [Agile User Experience – Bigger! Better! Faster! More](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/123) – Austin Govella, Leisa Reichelt, Dan Harrelson, yo!
* [Roll Over Gutenberg, Tell McLuhan the News](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/6) – George Kelly
* [The State of Professional Front-End Engineering](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/146) – Nate Koechley (yes, a Yahoo guy, but this is a must-see, trust me)
* [The Future of Presence](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/108) – Bryan Oberkirch
* [Redrum in the Rue Morgue: Collaboration in International Communities](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/642) – Ana Boa-Ventura
* [Build a Site Search Widget](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/477) – Kent Brewster (another Yahoo guy, but again this is not nepotism or logrolling – Kent is the real deal)
* [Social Network Coups: The Users are Revolting!](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/232) – Annalee Newitz
* [Do I have to disappear to get anything done?](a href=”http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/274) – Ryan Freitas
* [English: Technology’s Universal Language](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/481) – the always entertaining and enlightening Kevin Smockler
* [Stop Emailing and Be More Productive](http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ideas/view/52) – Tantek Çelik
Hit me up in the comments if you’d like to recommend another panel or presenter as well.