June 02, 2007
More Reboot

Reboot's second day was more fun for me than the first day. From day one I have to mention Marius Watz' very appealing presentation on generated art and of course the omni-presence of balding men (image tag, anyone?).
But day 2 then: Good talk from Sascha Pohflepp on the buttons project - the high note the very good remark that "A button is a sensor for the human will". Julian Bleeckers thoughts on the origins of the computer interface and the resulting non-playfullness was great, the session on grand theory and web design was fun, but highligted a conference wide problem: The disparate topics and reach of the conference led many presenters to spend 80% of the time to set up the premise and the conversational territory of the talk - and then there was short to little time to actually add anything to the setup. I wonder how one would best get the reach without all this cultural setup.
Around noon the conference turned into a semi-religious experience as hordes of geeks flocked to see, touch and photo the OLPC-laptop, that Håkon Wium Lie had brought. Apparently this third world wireless ZX spectrum is bigger than Jesus. It is a great project - and the device was compact and interesting - but it looked very much like a geek reenactment of The Pied Piper of Hamelin as Lie left the stage and the throng of geeks followed him about the conference hall.
I feel bad about missing most of Lee Bryant's talk on situated software used in BosniaSerbia to rebuild a city and its people after the horrors of the 90s. The urgency of this story is a tremendous disconnect to a lot of the rest of the conference which had the underlying topic "How do we get people to care at all about what we build?".
The Visual Complexity talk was oddly non-visual, the ambient intimacy talk was odd for me, because I had gotten the opposite message from the microversion of the talk compared to the message I got from the full meal.
Matt Webb was - as always - interesting to listen too, even if you had the sense that he still had some way to go before fully digesting the topic of his talk.

I met a lof of nice people, thanks to those of you I talked to for stimulating conversation, the occasional beer - and an extra special thanks for a chance to revisit the fascination with Speedway peculiar to southern Jutland.

Posted by Claus at June 02, 2007 06:00 PM | TrackBack (0)
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