Monday, April 05, 2004


WTF retrospective: What Took Flight

WTF!?! 2004 (April 2-4, 2004) has passed from a promise to an event, and now it passes into the dusty archives of (small-h) history. Having given my all for several weeks to make it happen, I feel about as cognitive as a sea-cucumber. I've been regenerating seretonin for 24 hours, and finally I can wiggle my fingers over this keyboard. I spent so much attention on logistics, mood and flow that there are major chunks of content that blew through my synapses with nary a trace. (And I missed some other important things -- like thanking Bruce Kushnik at the end of the show for the way his incredibly talented keyboard playing helped set the mood and "bookend" the sessions.) One day, I'll actually *go* to one of my own meetings.

So I'm especially grateful that WTF!?! was "confblogged" (or "type recorded") in amazing detail by FastCompany's Heath Row, who writes,
I tend to strive for almost-verbatim near-realtime transcripts of the sessions I sit in on. I type as folks talk. I lightly edit and clean up the text at the end, and I aim to post the entry within minutes after a talk ends. I call this type recording. Until there's persistent digital audio recording, marker setting, and near-immediate voice-to-text translation (anyone working on all this?), type recording -- grassroots stenography -- is as close as we can get. The networks allow for transmitting audio and video, yes, but text -- pure wordage -- is eminently more digestible, flexible, easily manipulated, and used.
Heath type-recorded 15 sessions including:WTF was also closely blogged by Martin "telepocalypse" Geddes.

UPDATE: An index of all Geddes' WTF blogging is here.. (Thanks, Martin!).

Geddes fills in some of Heath Row's "holidays", such as the Friday sessions and the Sunday wireless extravaganza with
Tim Shepherd, who modestly disclaims inventing mesh networking. Gordon Cook, the sharpest quill in telecom. And Col. David Hughes, an extraordinary gentleman and soldier who has been wirelessly connecting the ends of the Earth.
Geddes and Heath Row provide nice triangulation on the other sessions.

WTF!?! was also blogged at Corante by Steve Stroh. Meanwhile, Pito Salas gives a completely different view; to him, the evening BOF sessions were the highlight.

UPDATE: Russ Nelson has a long (but wrong) write-up of his reaction to "The end of the Age of Oil" talk by Deffeyes. (Russ seems to miss the fact that Deffeyes is not talking about *running out* of oil. He's talking about an all-time peak in oil production, and about a coming divergence between demand (rising) and production (falling). Deffeyes does not once say that there won't be any more oil. Nor does he claim that prices will not stabilize. RTFB, Russ (Read the Book) before inventing ridiculous objections.)
UPDATE UPDATE: Russ has revised the blog entry above, and now it makes a lot more sense. Now it reads almost exactly like one of the last chapters of Deffeyes' Hubbert's Peak :-), the one that deals with what the post-peak world looks like.

Then there's all kinds of secondary blogging. Notable among them, Jeff Jarvis, who first alerted me to Professor Eli Noam's dystopian musings, continues his ad-Noam-inem attack. (After Noam's talk, I gave him a pair of rose colored glasses in an attempt to correct his vision :-)).

WTF has made a mark as far away as Singapore and India.

Thanks to all 90+ WTFers, 12 virtual participants, and to everybody else who helped make it happen!

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