That was…BathCamp 2008

Going away to a land without any internet access (rural Devon, in a valley with no mobile coverage..) immediately after organising something like BathCamp feels a bit odd. On the one hand it’s great to run away and escape the stress, build-up and excitement that comes with running an event like that. On the other, it’s often the few days following an event that really help to mark whether something was a success or not, and missing out on the buzz feels a bit like missing out on the good bit of a party πŸ™‚

It’s now more than a week ago, but I still wanted to chuck out a brief blog post with some thanks and thoughts.

First off, massive thanks to our amazing sponsors – without you, nothing at all would have happened. We ate, venued (?) and drank extremely well, and I think we wanted for nothing. Except maybe space-themed savoury snacks, that is (noted – we’ll sort it out for next time πŸ™‚ ).

I’d particularly like to thank.. Darren Beale of Siftware who went waaay beyond the call of duty by not only sponsoring but also helping us shift baths and drapes, not to mention running an excellent quiz; Peter Gradwell, who – again – not only sponsored, but also provided us with technical support (thanks Gavin!) to help bolster the wifi network in the venue; JR from Invention who helped in so many ways – and under really rather…difficult..circumstances – I can’t possibly mention them all here; Matt Jukes for the multi-function bath / duck habitat / beer cooler (not to mention the ducks themselves…); the awesome Lisa P for organisational skills extraordinaire; Tim B for being amazing and knowing – well, everyone; the other co-organisers for all your hard work; Oh, and the sponsors (again!) – particularly for their flexibility and patience dealing with someone like me who knows NOTHING about sponsorship..; my mum…and…look – you know who you are – thanks…!

Without the people who turned up and did talks, of course, BathCamp would have been a pizza n beer fest without any reason or meaning: fattening, tasty, but ultimately unsatisfying. As it happens, the talks were extraordinary in their range and interestingness, and I’d like to thank everyone who contributed – and everyone who listened and questioned too. One of my core personal aims of BathCamp was to try to create an event where ideas of all kinds – deep tech, light tech, non-tech – were surfaced and shared by people who cared passionately about those ideas. I think it worked.

I’ll leave commentary on sessions to everyone else. Over the coming week, I’ll find some time to try and link stuff together a bit better from the main BathCamp website. For now, you can get a pretty good idea of what people have been saying about the event by checking out this OneTag view. Once again, thanks everyone. You rocked.

It’s BathCamp weekend!

…well, almost.

A long time ago I posted the first mention of BathCamp. We came up with the idea in Montreal at Museums and the Web in April 2008. Now we’re 5 months down the line and two days (eek!) before the event itself.

I’m deeply, deeply excited about what we’ve (collectively – thanks guys!) achieved: fantastic sponsors, an amazing venue, a hugely interesting list of people wanting to talk and a quantity of buzz, too. I’ve also been very touched by the number of people who have helped out in many and various ways. Sometime soon I’ll talk about who they (you!) are, but now is not that time – got things to do πŸ˜‰

You’ll have noticed that there has been a looong gap since the last post on Electronic Museum. The reason for this is two-fold. First, the obvious one – BathCamp has not only diverted some of my writing attention over toΒ http://blog.bathcamp.org/ but also eaten up many spare evenings and weekend time: the time I usually spend both researching and writing the Electronic Museum blog. Second, I’ve become increasingly aware that the blogs that I really read are not the ones who mercilessly grind out a post or more a day (you know who you are!), but the ones which are beautifully written, opinionated, well crafted and (possibly because of this) most often less frequent. Much as I love TechCrunch, for example, my Google Reader tells me 13.6 posts a day are pumped out from the lips of Arringtons’ team.Β I also did some asking around about RSS subscriptions, and a number of people said they subscribe to 100 or more feeds. I subscribe to a choice few feeds, and checking today after a 3 day break, I have 650 unread items. This is craziness, and I want to be a part of the signal, not part of the noise.

I’m on holiday next week following BathCamp (so you’ll get a bit more blessed silence from me..) – following that, things might return to normal round here OR I may bring my latest scheme into action. Watch this space πŸ™‚

See you at BathCamp – if you can’t make it, remember you can keep an eye on anything tagged bathcamp08. ta!

BathCamp update

As I mentioned in an earlier post, because I haven’t got enough on outside of work (OneTag+, various blogs, a novel, music composing, Stufflinker, museum mashup day, 2 kids) – and really need to fill that 25th and 26th hours of the day – I’m working with a bunch of people to put together a Bar Camp in Bath (BathCamp…!) later this summer.

Frankie, Mia and I thought it up while we were at Museums and the Web after 400 pints of Rickard’s Red and a plate of finest poutine, and have been shaping it since then.

It was all seeming a bit overwhelming, and I’m not the first person I’d call on to organise anything, but luckily I met a fine geezer called Tim Beadle (who does tech stuff in Bristol) and a fine geezerette called Laura Francis (who does tech stuff in Bath), both of whom were involved in setting up a Bristol Bar Camp last year. We’ve agreed it’d be sensible to combine the two events and bring Bristol Bar Camp to Bath this summer.

Anyway (Get to the point, man!): Tim Beadle and I have booked a venue and date for this summers’ BathCamp. It’ll be from Saturday 13th – Sunday 14th September 2008 at Invention Studios in Bath. Further details including Upcoming link, map, Flickr shots etc are on the BathCamp blog over here. I’ll drop the occasional post on the Electronic Museum site, but if you want to watch progress, the BathCamp blog is the thing to subscribe to.

A barcamp in Bath? Bathcamp, obviously.

here? maybeNothing quite like leaping in and doing something before sorting out any of the details, but I’m hoping to organise a barcamp type moment in the Bath vicinity sometime during summer 2008.

I’m actually possibly the worst person to do anything with such enormous logistical overhead, but as long as I remain confident, calm and don’t tell anyone that I don’t know what I’m doing, then everything will turn out ok. I also have a very fine set of people who are up for helping, including my wife, who loves this sort of thing.

Anyway.

What: some kind of barcamp event;
Where:
Bath or very close nearby
When:
A Saturday (+night) sometime late summer 2008

If I’ve managed to pique your interest enough with this genius bit of marketing that tells you neither what, when nor where exactly then please head over to http://bathcamp.org and register your details. I’ve also added an entry to the barcamp wiki at http://barcamp.pbwiki.com/BarCampBath.

Once I’ve got some measure of the numbers I’ll start refining dates, venues and content – sorry! structure πŸ™‚

Look forward to hearing from you!