Mesh 08 Conference Day One Thought

First day of this year's Mesh was a bit of a curate's egg for me, for a couple of reasons.

First, as I'm still fresh back from vacation and haven't even had a chance to get into the office yet, I've been trying to get as much catching up and work done in the space between the meshing. I had to tune out a few times during the day to get some billable hours in.

Secondly, the sessions I attended fell into one of two categories at opposite ends of a spectrum of quality - they were either just OK-ish or utterly fantastic. In the latter group, Michael Geist's truly outstanding keynote was just inspiring. Geist kicks righteous arse - he's a national treasure and one of the most important voices Canada has to contribute to the global conversation on topics as diverse as privacy, copyright, activism, poverty, technology and law. Smart, insightful, bold, and he gives good PowerPoint.

Also mind-expandingly wonderful was the discussion "Does Location Matter" between CBC's Nora Young and the charming, brilliant, and just flat-out interesting Bill Buxton. One of the entertaining things about this session was that, of the five different people I've discussed it with in the hours since it ended yesterday afternoon, I've heard five different versions of what Bill and Nora's conversation was actually about. I think that's evidence of the depth and breadth of what was a really valuable hour for me. A recording of the session should be up on the CBC Spark blog sometime soon - well worth downloading.

I didn't even attempt to live-blog or tweet yesterday's proceedings - but a tip o' the bowler hat to Dave Fleet, whose stream-of-consciousness live blogging efforts prove that he has the remarkable ability to both listen, type, and think all at the same time. That's a lot harder than it sounds.

Now happily ensconced in the second keynote at Day Two and looking forward to the Social Media and the Enterprise session I'm contributing to this afternoon.