EricSkiff.com Open Source Everything

24Jan/060

New monthly photo

Amit pretend juggles while Eric Juggles pins. The caption says Pretend juggling is actually much harder than real juggling. Most people dont know that -Amit. Photo by Jessie Chan-Norris

Well, the tree has been down for weeks, but I hadn't gotten around to changing the christmas picture at the top left of this site.

I finally changed it today, using a flikr picture from barcamp by Jesse Chan-Norris. Thanks Jesse for letting me use the photo!

Here's the photo for all you RSS and LiveJournal readers who don't get a chance to see my theme very often:

24Jan/060

BarCamp, SXSW, Texas, and other crazy words

John and me presenting at BarCampTwo weeks ago, I participated in an ad-hoc un-conference called BarCamp (photos). BarCamp was basically my ideal conference: plenty of space (generously donated by CollegeHumor.com), lots of good presentation tracks, brilliant people, and no vendors pushing Schwag and products you don't need. Best of all, it was free - the only rule was that if you came, you had to present.

I decided to present on the same thing I was working on at the time: figuring out how to make MySpace work for the GlitchCast the same way it works for indie bands. I was learning how to "game the system," and I'd written some open source code to do just that and was treating the entire operation as an experiment in marketing.

John Resig was planning on presenting something similar and got in contact with me, and soon we were collaborating via wiki on "Subverting Social Networks." It turns out that John's actually a brilliant coder and had written and studied tons of these little apps, so we'd had a great mix of shared experiences and differing points of view. We worked together at BarCamp to shape the presentation, and I think it came out pretty well. Our talk was pretty well attended, and we got some great discussion and some good laughs.

It turns out that there was a prize for favorite presentation, and in the after-event voting, John's and my presentation won! Considering the caliber of the other presenters and topics, I'm somewhere between surprised, flattered, and ecstatic. The prize is a ticket to the HUGE interactive, film, and music festival South by SouthWest (SXSW Interactive) in Austin, TX. It turns out that Sara was planning to head to Virginia that weekend anyway, so it looks like I'm going. John unfortunately had to decline due to costs (travel to TX and hotel are still factors).

I'm super excited to get to meet more amazing people on the bleeding edge of the internet, music, and culture, and I think it'll be a great venue to talk to people about The GlitchCast and my latest crazy venture (which I'll announce here soon, I promise!)

By crazy circumstance, it turns out that Marianne, Colleen, Carol, and Robin will all be in Austin for "Staple" just a few days before! What are the odds? Looks like we'll be passing in the air unless you guys want to stay in Austin a few extra days.

I just want to take a final moment here to thank the organizers of BarCamp for putting together such a brilliant event. The orchestration of everything from the space to the sponsors was herculean, and I've seen $300 a day conferences that had 1/10th the value that was packed into those 2 days in Tribeca. I'm still going back through and processing everything I learned, and now I get to continue my adventure.