Field Theory by Hadyn Green

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Field Theory: Webstock, rollin' with heat

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  • Russell Brown,

    Bruce Sterling's talk caused so much fuming and grumpiness that he had to put the transcript up on Wired.com

    I was in the "I loved it" camp. I thought it was useful not least because it introduced a whole lot of people who were and are touchingly serious about what they do to the concept of being gently mocked. He struck me as a classic American raconteur -- a sort of modern Mark Twain, if you will.

    Jose and I will be there collecting some coverage for Media7, and then I'm I'm fronting the inaugural ONYA awards on the Friday night. Oh oh golly gosh, there's some goodness lined up for that.

    But, of course, before that, there's Kiwi Foo Camp this weekend. It's a pretty intense way to come back from holiday, but this month generally sets my agenda for the rest of the year.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22743 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    I completely forgot about the Onyas! And the workshops and all of the other stuff that goes on around Webstock (including the pre-Webstock tweet-up the Wellingtonista are hosting)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    Bruce Sterling's talk caused so much fuming and grumpiness that he had to put the transcript up on Wired.com

    I was in the "I loved it" camp. I thought it was useful not least because it introduced a whole lot of people who were and are touchingly serious about what they do to the concept of being gently mocked. He struck me as a classic American raconteur -- a sort of modern Mark Twain, if you will.

    True story: a guy at the table in front of me started playing World of Warcraft on his laptop during Bruce's talk.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • Narelle_NZ,

    Great post! Totally sums up how a committed Webstock addict like myself feels about it. Loved it from the very first conference.

    Can't wait til next week!

    Wellington, New Zealand • Since Feb 2010 • 1 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Green,

    Just a bloody shame it is so expensive. For a self-employed front-end designer like me, who is on the geek fringe, I just can't justify spending that much on something which I'm afraid will just be too geeky. I'd like Webstock taster tickets please, so I can dip my toe in without bankrupting myself.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 53 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Was that the Sterling talk which comprised stream of consciousness waffle mixed with errors so fundamental as to completely discredit it in the minds of people who were familiar with the subject matter?

    Ah yes, it was.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    I'm actually feeling really low about not being able to afford to go to Webstock this year.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    Was that the Sterling talk which comprised stream of consciousness waffle mixed with errors so fundamental as to completely discredit it in the minds of people who were familiar with the subject matter?

    Ah yes, it was.

    I believe that was the sound of a gauntlet being thrown. Possibly down. (in my head I'm singing Glove Slap! Baby, Glove Slap! )

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    About 2 grand for the whole business, roughly. Which doesn't strike me as completely unreasonable.

    But for those with a will and a way, there's ability to access and even interact with these interesting minds through the internet.

    Kinda on/off topic, just because it's cool, MIT is offering a great deal of their coursework content on the net entirely free. Sweet.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Mark Cubey,

    Kim Hill will be speaking with futurist and Webstock guest Mark Pesce on Saturday Morning after 11am.

    Wellington • Since May 2008 • 65 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    MIT is offering a great deal of their coursework content on the net entirely free

    The one in Boston, not the one in Manukau?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Gracewood,

    Lovely post Hadyn. You hit the Webstock je-ne-sais-quoi nail right between the eyes, if I may be permitted to mix some metaphors.

    Orkland • Since Nov 2006 • 168 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    if I may be permitted to mix some metaphors

    Just don't screw yourself in the foot

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

  • Isabel Hitchings,

    I have the envy. My partner gets to go to webstock while I get to solo parent at school camp.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2007 • 719 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    But if Felicia Day isn't going, why would I want to?

    ...oh, wait, that's w00tstock. Carry on, then.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 864 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Dempsey,

    Sigh. Why isn't Webstock held in Auckland?

    Not that I'm interested in going, it's just that I know the creative energy that emanates from these things just courses down city streets, and if Auckland needs anything, it's a hefty dose of creativity right now...

    Parnell / Tamaki-Auckland… • Since Sep 2008 • 659 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    I am inordinately excited about Webstock. Last year was the first time I missed it - I was newly self-employed at that stage and watching every penny, and I just couldn't afford it.

    Things are a wee bit better now - and I figure it's worth its weight in informal networking, inspiration and all-round goodness anyway, so woohoo! I'm off to Webstock again this year!

    @Carol Green - it's not actually that geeky - or perhaps I should say, depending on the talks you choose to attend, it can be as geeky or as non-geeky as you like. Many non-geeks come to Webstock (eg project managers, govt peeps etc) and they have an awesome (and incredibly useful) time. It's so worth it - and for self-employed people the networking alone can be worth the price of admission.

    I'm particularly thrilled this year about the late introduction of Scott Thomas - Design Director for the Obama Presidential campaign - to the lineup. Talk about two of my major obsessions crashing into each other at high speed! w00t!

    I also got nominated for a couple of ONYAs, which is so thrilling I can't even begin to express how thrilling that is.

    All in all it's gonna be an awesome few days and I hope to see many of you there. Come and say hi!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 331 posts Report Reply

  • stephen clover,

    Talk about two of my major obsessions crashing into each other at high speed!

    Which two?

    wgtn • Since Sep 2007 • 355 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Was that the Sterling talk which comprised stream of consciousness waffle mixed with errors so fundamental as to completely discredit it in the minds of people who were familiar with the subject matter?

    Ah yes, it was.

    Heh. It certainly was polarising. But I seem to recall tweeting 13 separate zingers from that talk.

    And I wasn't alone. matt.geek.nz was impressed too:

    Bruce Sterling spoke before Damian, but I wanted to talk about him last because his presentation was something that stood alone. He was electrifying. He presented one slide, Tim O’Reilly’s Web 2.0 meme map, and tore it to shreds. It was a deconstruction; a wake-up call, he was trying to shake us out of the fog we were in.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22743 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Many non-geeks come to Webstock (eg project managers, govt peeps etc) and they have an awesome (and incredibly useful) time. It's so worth it - and for self-employed people the networking alone can be worth the price of admission.

    One thing I do know is that you see a lot of the ticket price "on the screen", as it were. The Webstockers have not got rich off this. What they have done is aimed for excellence in who they recruit, the way they treat people and the way they produce the event.

    I've spoken every year but this one, and I can say that they do New Zealand proud. I've heard the visiting stars marvel over the warmth and quality of their reception here -- and directly and favourably compare Webstock to the US conference circuit. People really respect this show.

    I also got nominated for a couple of ONYAs, which is so thrilling I can't even begin to express how thrilling that is.

    I was really pleased for you when I saw that. And also for the developers of this site, CactusLab, who are finalists in the two mobile categories. And for NZ On Screen, where I think Brenda has nailed it. Yay for talent.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22743 posts Report Reply

  • webweaver,

    Talk about two of my major obsessions crashing into each other at high speed!

    Which two?

    Everything web and American politics (especially subset: Obama), of course.

    ...and thanks for the kind words Russell. Yay for all of us!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 331 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Webstock is a shining example of what this nation needs to be producing more of, drawing on our creativity, hospitality and intelligence to produce world-beating experiences and brands.

    And I love that the awards have a category for accessibility. On yous.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19667 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Sigh. Why isn't Webstock held in Auckland?
    Not that I'm interested in going, it's just that I know the creative energy that emanates from these things just courses down city streets, and if Auckland needs anything, it's a hefty dose of creativity right now...

    It wouldn't work in Auckland. It's just not the same kind of place. Nyah nyah nyah!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    It wouldn't work in Auckland.

    Probably right, and Webstock draws on exceptional people and a close industry clustered in a relatively small place and supported over time by some farsighted investments like Citylink. Auckland often lacks that feeling of a centre.

    However, Christopher, take heart that we have the scale and diversity to host things like the international Creative Industries Conference instead. And pretty much anything else that doesn't depend on central government patronage or contracts.

    Welli should keep the Sevens and WOW though. And Webstock.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19667 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    Welli should keep the Sevens and WOW though. And Webstock.

    You can have the Sevens. There, that's my act of kindness.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

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