Wednesday’s future of web apps conference was not only intellectually stimulating but also one big photo opportunity for me (and, to be fair, all the other attendees). Flickr is now up to almost 500 photos from the day tagged with futureofwebapps and I manage to feature in a few of them.
Vanity aside, it’s a new experience for me. I can’t think of any event I’ve gone to before which has had such a swarm of online activity surrounding and enhancing the live experience. This is the Matrix, the Grid, the Net of countless cyberpunk fictions becoming just a little more real.
Of course, pretty much everyone in the room on Wednesday qualifies as a geek. These are people who look at scripts and see web pages; these are the technomancers who talk with databases and sing down wires. However, one of the significant changes happening in this Web 2.0 wave is lowering the entry bar. Do you want to share pictures of an online event? Get a Flickr account and copying pictures from your computer to the web is probably easier than getting them from the camera to the computer in the first place. Do you want to tag them so that they get grouped together with other images from the same event? As long as a standard tag name has been publicised, it’s easier than scribbling a message on a Post-it note.
It will be interesting to see how it pans out – this is what the geeks are doing today but will it be as common as scratching your nose by 2010?