Interesting 08

I spent most of today at Interesting 08, the conference put together by Russell Davies, pulling a whole lot of, well, interesting people together. I had a great, thought-provoking day

Here’s some notes on the talks. They ranged from 3 mins to about 20 and covered all sorts of topics. The notes are really just impressions.

Roo Reynolds – Lego is fun and everyone should be using more.

Gemma Teed – horses spook because they are herd/predator animals, even if now they spook at umbrellas instead of lions, tigers and bears. ( I used to ride one that hated pigs, a common fear of horses, and used to end up dancing all over the road if we came across one unexpectedly)

Collyn Chipperfield – tired of reality, why aren’t we doing more with fantasy. Let’s explore the possible.

Steve Hardy – Generalists do a lot of things. They present information: synthesise and summarise. They Generate ideas: link and leap. They connect people: mix and match. They understand world view: experience and empathise.

Daniel Raven Ellison – Geography is about place and space, security and freedom. Geography is the now and the future. We need to do more earth writing, changing and challenging what goes on

Michael Johnson – a walk through guitars and graphic design whilst playing the guitar to illustrate the journey. (one of the faves)

Phil Gyford – masks. How masks mean y you have to communicate more with gestures and body language instead of it all being in the face.

James Wallis – a geophysical survey of World of Warcraft, where timing walking distance shows the world to be about a 12km diameter sphere, but the gravity is similar to Earth, so it has a density about 500x greater than Earth. Such a dense mass distorts time (which is why so much is wasted in there)

Matt Dent – how he designed the reverse of the new coins and the process that went into actually getting it done.

Matt Webb – the ancient Patagonians communicated using mirrors and light and you were supposed to be able to see across the country, something that is not possible due to diffraction etc . All this changed when the Conquistidors arrived. Did they infect the continent with European physics as well as smallpox?

Andrew Webb – travelling the country looking at food and how it’s made Surprised and happy at the passion, talent and openness on show.

Andrew Walkingshaw – the naming of things. Names give power. On the web, everything has a name, but my sites are not me, they’re just aspects of me.

Andrew Dick – had insomnia for 10 years. the best cure he’s found is audio books of crime novels. Needs to have a strong plot (although writing is rarely good), abridged versions are best, no moral ambiguity, has to be a little bit thrilling – boring stuff means you think about other things and it should make going to sleep fun.

Jenny Owen – a tribute to Churchill

Matt Irvine – an ad hoc recorder orchestra (Completely mad, I got up on stage for this)

Lloyd Davies – some ukelele playing and then some mediatation

Simon/Ken/Curtis – welcome to Mars. A reading about the development of the suburbs to weird spacey sound effects.

Anna Pickard – words are funny, especially with k or p or b. She likes biscuit. (I like soggy)

Younghee Jung – a view of toilets around the world

James Bridle – IN vino, civitas. Booze has always been part of civilisation.

Kim Plowright – a history of vacuum cleaners. First ones were on the backs of carts brought to you. First personal ones cost 5 months wage.

James Houston – a remized Radiohead Nude video, which he’d used as final part of his degree

Jim Le Fevre – using a camera and a record player to make animation. (zoetropes) (Brilliant demonstration)

Gavin Starks – Acoustic Cosmology. the readings from the universe can be turned into sound.

Joel Gethin Lewis – Hiraeth, a welsh term for a sense of longing, of being in the moment and time sin his life when he’s been there (I though it was supposed to be spelled hiraedd)

George Oates – A brief run through the ‘prizes’ that get offered on Flickr and how they are used to give and receive recognition.

Lea Becker – scribbles are good. what are good illustrations. sometimes just let the ideas flow.

Leisa Riechelt – the brain is designed to learn. we continuously lose brain cells from the moment we are born, the ones we keep depend on how we use them

Max Gadney – a look at the tools of WWII. Are we only now able to start to look at WWII with real scholorship?

Lots and lots of different things, all sorts of topics, all sorts of wonders. What would you want to talk about. Me, I have an idea around geneology.

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