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Ignite London 2 – The Aftermath

2010 July 12

Ignite LondonIgnite London 2 was a roaring success. From Cory Doctorow’s polemic about the BBC introducing DRM to High Definition at the start to Tom Scott’s SciFi story Mob at the end, there wasn’t a dull moment the entire evening.

The audience - aware, ready to learn - I hope so, these are my O'Reilly colleagues - Helen, Caitlin, Sharon

The speakers were knowledgeable, interesting, funny, thought-provoking, eloquent, accomplished. The audience were generous, patient, aware, ready to laugh, ready to learn. The Luminaire was a great size, with a good PA, a bedsheet that stood in very nicely for a projection screen and a mirrorball over the stage (that I got to switch on). The Luminaire’s staff were friendly, positive, open, helpful, very capable and they really wanted the night to be a success. All in all, a fine night.

Arthur, the Sound Guy

Arthur, the Sound Guy

I spent the evening in the sound booth by the bar with Arthur, the Luminaire’s in-house sound engineer. My job was to sync the slides on the TV screens with those on the stage. Ostensibly, that should have been as simple as pressing Play as the first slide appeared, but for some reason 15 seconds on my MacBook Pro was slightly longer than 15 seconds on Dan’s Mac Book Pro, so toward the end of each presentation, they were out of kilter by a couple of seconds. Ah well, something was bound to go wrong on that night, and that little glitch was as bad as it got, so we got away lightly. It would have been an impossible task if Paul Downey from Osmosoft hadn’t been there with a video connector to bring together the laptop and the tellies – thanks, Paul.

With my O’Reilly head on, I particularly enjoyed seeing a couple of the presentations. Andy ‘Bob’ Brockhurst did a fine talk on the Maker/Hacker Revolution. Bob will be Yahoo!’s emissary to Maker Faire (as I type, a week a way, Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th March 2010). And NK Guy did a fine talk on flash photography – NK (or Neil as he’s also known) is about to become a Rocky Nook author, Rocky Nook being a client publisher of O’Reilly’s. His book, Mastering Canon EOS Flash Photography, is out this month.

The view from the sound booth

The view from the sound booth

From a personal point of view, as a teenage heavy metal fan, I loved Keith Kahn-Harris’ presentation about being a Metal Jew. And Newspaper Club is a company I’m keen to champion, so Russell Davies’ talk was a treat to hear. But there really were too many fine presentations to list individually. Top marks to everyone!

My co-organiser, Richard Johnson, has worked like a madman to edit the first of the videos for public consumption in quick time. Here’s the first one, the first person on the bill and one of our two special guests for the night, Cory Doctorow:

How the BBC wants to break your television by Cory Doctorow

from hurryonhome on Vimeo.

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