Smells like Singularity

Godin Needs Singularity

I can't believe I missed this when it first came out (it was probably because I'd just started on the my crazy two-month trip to simultaneously learn Google App Engine, brush up my Python, and build the new Singularity web site):

Brooks Andrus from Techsmith, whom I always end up having a lovely conversation with whenever I'm at a geek conference, wrote about the Singularity web conference a few months back in response to a post by Seth Godin titled The new standard for meetings and conferences. (Brooks, I hope you don't mind that I stole your excellent graphic for the post.)

In his post, Seth states:

If oil is $130 a barrel and if security adds two or three hours to a trip and if people are doing more and more business with those far afield...

and if we need to bring together more people from more places when we get together...

and if the alternatives, like video conferencing or threaded online conversations continue to get better and better, then...

I think the standard for a great meeting or a terrific conference has changed.

In other words, "I flew all the way here for this?" is going to be far more common than it used to be.

I love Brooks's reply:

Seth Godin meet Aral Balkan and welcome to Singularity.

Looking at the comments for the post, I did see a common misconception voiced by several people that Singularity is an online conference. I can see how this came to be, as early on, I was calling it that too. But, as it has begun to take shape, I realize now that it's not an online conference, Singularity is a global web conference.

What's the difference? Here's a quote from the comment I left on Brooks's post:

I just have to clarify that Singularity is not an online conference, it’s a _global_ conference. The big difference here is that we have local conference hubs around the world, some being organized by venue sponsors like Yahoo! and the BBC and others — community hubs — being organized by community groups. People meet up _locally_ as part of a global event.

We definitely use the Internet but it’s our communication medium. It’s what ties all the local groups together. Sure there will be people experiencing and interacting with the conference from the comfort of their own rooms — and some speakers will even be presenting from whichever hotel room they happen to be at the moment — but we are concentrating heavily on having a good speaker and audience presence at the various local hubs. I feel this is essential to the character of the conference.

I truly feel that we are traversing some uncharted terrain here, building the first Conference 2.0, as it were. And I hope that other conferences follow suit because the type of conference we’re creating is environmentally friendly.

Thank you, Brooks, for writing up such a cool post on Singularity.

Ticket sales for the Singularity web conference started yesterday with the launch of our new site on Google App Engine. Tickets during the early bird discount are just $99 (inc. VAT). You can also micro-sponsor the conference for just $199 (inc. VAT). So what are you waiting for? Join us in making history with the world's first global web conference.