Category Archives: Conferences

Coverage of various conferences I attend.

BarCamp Charlotte

I went up to Charlotte, NC on Saturday to take part in BarCamp Charlotte 2. I got a great deal of value out of the presentations, and it was really important for me to see a BarCamp in action — important as we prepare for the inaugural BarCamp Charleston on Saturday.

I was only able to attend the afternoon sessions, but fortunately I was able to see how Charlotte’s interpretation of BarCamp works. I even tried to pitch a session talking about what I’ve done with my weather projects, and while there was some interest, it didn’t quite pass muster. But that’s alright — I know I wouldn’t have been able to match the quality of the sessions I attended, which were incredibly well-thought-out and creative. I attended a session called “45 Questions in 45 Minutes,” which aimed for 45 questions about the web answered in a strict one-minute time limit (though people found loopholes later on :) ). I got to see a great demo of HTML5 — and from that, confidence that I can start to use HTML 5 now. Finally, I attended a panel about the future of journalism (a topic near and dear to this journalism major’s heart), during which I got to mention the #CHS Hashtag Summit, which likely sparked a Charlotte news hashtagging movement as well.

It was also great to connect and re-connect with a lot of my Charlotte Twitter friends. I think that’s the part of these events I enjoy most — connecting with all the people in “real life” that I interact with daily on Twitter. I also got to meet a whole lot of new people as well — always a plus.

The event seemed to go very well (at least for the few hours I was there), and I look forward to making the trip for BarCamp Charlotte 3.

BarCamp Charleston’s approaching — still time to get involved!

BarCampCHS Logo There’s just a little over a month to go until BarCamp Charleston, which will be held on Saturday, October 24 at the Lowcountry Innovation Center. BarCamp is really gaining steam, with some fantastic session proposals and great sponsors, including Collecta, a powerful real-time search engine with local ties; rehava, a real estate store that is reinventing how homes are bought and sold; and the City of North Charleston, home of the Lowcountry Innovation Center and the best municipal social media strategy in the region.

We can still use your help, though. We’re still looking for more sponsors to help us put on an outstanding free event (BarCamp is meant to be free to everyone). Check out the BarCamp sponsor packages. Have an idea for a presentation? Let’s hear it, whether you can teach it or if you want someone else to teach it. It doesn’t have to be a technology topic, either — BarCamp, while it has traditionally been tech-oriented, is about sharing all types of knowledge. People have proposed sessions about photography, public speaking and the king of Internet meme foods, bacon.

Want to get involved in the planning of BarCamp? That’s easy, too — our biweekly planner’s meeting is at 5:30 PM on Tuesday. We’ll be chowing down at EVO Pizza in North Charleston (here’s a map to EVO), so come hungry and full of ideas. We’d love to have you.

Keep up with regular BarCamp updates on the BarCamp blog or by following @BarCampCHS on Twitter, and don’t forget to mark down the 24th of October.

Going (Word)Camping

I’ll be right smack in the middle of the Research Triangle this weekend for WordCampRDU 2009, one of many WordCamp events dedicated to helping users of all skills levels, from beginner to expert, hone their skills and learn more about the ever-expanding world of WordPress.

I made a decision over three years ago to use WordPress for the reincarnation of this blog, and I don’t think I’ve ever been happier with a piece of software. The development ecosystem is thriving and Automattic, the parent company that governs the WordPress universe, have consistently made smart acquisitions (Gravatar, Intense Debate) that have further helped cultivate this healthy growth in WordPress as a platform. The ecosystem is so good, in fact, that it changed this developer’s behavior from one of “come hell or high water, I’m coding this myself” to that of embracing the community and taking advantage of the collective intelligence of a lot of folks who are even more enthusiastic about WordPress than I am. Here’s hoping that at WordCamp I can come away with the skills to start giving back, because my debts are great.

The keynote speaker is none other than Matt Mullenweg himself, founder of the project and Automattic. It’ll be quite a good time — if you’re there, I’d love to meet up!