NotCon 04

Let’s make some notes about what I saw at NotCon before I forget everything.

On arrival I took a wrong turn and ended up missing Danny O’Brien’s Life Hacks talk which I really wanted to see. Instead I ended up in the geolocation session. The most interesting talks for me were Earle talking about OpenGuides and the mad urban explorers from Project Z.

After that I got my bearings a bit better and caught the very end of Danny’s talk before learning how to tell the time using a Marks and Spencer prawn sandwich. I’m not really sure why I stayed for the rest of the hardware session (I’m not really a hardware chap) but some of it was very interesting. I particularly liked the ideas of programming a VCR by sending and email and using a camera phone as a “mouse”.

After lunch I was back upstairs for the MP3 session. This consisted of a panel discussion about the copyright problems inherent in creating MP3 mashups followed by a discussion of AudioScobbler. I’ve signed up for AudioScrobbler, so there will be another entry on that soon.

I stayed upstairs for the bizarrely entitled session on social software. Not that social software is a bizarre subject for a session, but none of the talks were really about social software. Simon Cozens talked about how he build an Orkut clone using his new Perl web framework Maypole but his talk may have been too much about actually writing Perl code for most of the audience. Another outstanding talk in this session was Alex McLean making music by writing Perl code in real time.

Then a slight cock-up on the scheduling front. I was looking forward to seeing Tom Nolan’s Shit I’m A Manager, but somehow I’d missed the announcement that it was going on simulateously with the social software session in the other room. By legging it, I managed to catch the last few minutes.

The sessions on Blogging with a Point and Politics on the Web followed. Tim Ireland suggested that we all set up a blog which cyber-stalked our MP and Tom Loosemore and Stef Magdalinski introduced They Work For You which is fab.

Then the day finished with Yoz Graham and Sean Solle trying not to give away too much information about the forthcoming h2H2G2 film.

All in all, an excellent day. Sure the organisation and the time-keeping was a bit random at times. But that really didn’t matter. And I’m sure the organisers will use this experience to make the next one better. There bloody well better be a next one.

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