Crazy Day Trip: To NYC and Back for FOWD ‘07
There's a lot going on here at the four labs, and so the four of us attending Carsonified's Future of Web Design conference this year had to make a long day trip up to New York. Fortunately, when it comes to Ryan Carson's conferences, even the sub-par conferences are well worth every resultant hour of sleep deprivation. I say sub-par mainly because this conference didn't have the polish that we tend to take for granted when it comes to Carson conferences. The venue was large, echoey, and didn't allow for much audience feedback -- if a speaker told a decent joke, audience laughter was swallowed up by the space, and it sounded like awkward silence. The venue was also essentially a glass cube, and the sunlight coming through shone directly on the presentation screen, making speakers' slides nearly impossible to see for much of the day. Ryan Carson did the right thing and is offering attendees video of the conference free of charge. On the other hand, the content of the conference was definitely the high-quality fare you expect. It was action-packed, with no fewer than eighteen speaking spots in just over nine hours. While many of the speakers were familiar faces from the web design / web standards speaking circuit, there were a few who were new (to me, at least), and a couple who really stood out:
- Elliot Jay Stocks, Carsonified's new Senior Designer, was given ten minutes to make his case for abandoning some of the trendy design motifs we've seen in the Web 2.0 space. He made the most of each of those minutes, and left the entire audience wishing he'd been given a full slot, with an engaging, witty, and eloquent monologue. I'm sure we'll see more of him in the future.
- Jeffrey Kalmikoff, Chief Creative Officer at SkinnyCorp, did a really great job on his talk, answering questions submitted by users. It was a creative and engaging way for him to deliver a talk on community.