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A neat conference hack?

Friday, July 10, 2009 by Dave Winer.

A picture named drums.jpgHey I just had an idea for a conference hack you can do at a traditional audience-oriented conference.  Permalink to this paragraph

I have a theory that you could grab any random person from the audience and put them on stage and they'd give a better talk than the usual conference speaker because they wouldn't have had time to prepare slides or get nervous and plan a speech in their head.  Permalink to this paragraph

So, why not do exactly that! Permalink to this paragraph

Have a "surprise panel" mid-afternoon on the first day, around 3PM. The conference moderator takes the podium and says: "Would the following people please come up on stage." And then he'd name four people chosen at random from the audience. Then they'd have a discussion about the previous panels and speeches, the topics of the day in whatever industry or profession the conference is about. Permalink to this paragraph

The only problem with this idea is that by 3PM most of the people would already be out in the hallway schmoozing because the speeches and panels were so boring. Not exactly sure what to do about that. Permalink to this paragraph

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A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 54, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

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"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.


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