Oh, it’s been busy busy busy, but for a week, time with stop, and I will paddle around with some 700 other people in a veritable sea of “ideas worth spreading” at the TEDGlobal Conference next week in Edinburgh.
I have done the suggested prep – I noted and contacted my Top 10 TEDGlobal attendees (TED uses a “secret” algorhythm to generate that.) They all have something in common with me – either the key words they picked, their profiles etc.
I have updated my own profile, so that other attendees get the latest info about me. I packed my business cards which have different images reflecting the different kinds of work I do, so I can customise the image for the people I meet (See: Make Your Business Cards Moo). I have a thick notebook, and rain gear.
I even re-read my last year’s blog post on How to Go To TED, and am always very happy when I re-use my learning. I also tidied up my TweetDeck columns so I can follow the #TEDGlobal tag, and use it to find people and keep up with what’s going on onsite. This year, however, TED tells us that people using smartphones and laptops must sit in the back rows of the Edinburgh International Conference Centre where the main stage is located.
TED is known for bringing to the stage people with remarkable ideas, who are not always household names (yet). On the agenda this year are Malcomb Gladwell (writer), Alain de Botton (philosopher), and Thandie Newton (actor), among many others – see the speaker list here. And there is normally a secret guest – last year it was WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, this year it could be anyone…
I have not been able to entirely clear my calendar for the week, although that is highly recommended by the TED organizers. But I do have a set of connecting questions I would like to ask the people I will meet there, bringing together my world and the eclectic TED world. For example, how can other learning events have similar pull power that people will actually prepare for them? What are some of the features that make an event so exciting that people will update their profile before they go? TED has a lot of “pull” power, and although I can guess some of it, I have my own reasons, and it would be interesting to hear from others what makes them so eager to come for this learning extravaganza…
I will do my best to blog and Tweet, but will probably do it at night, as I can’t see myself in the back rows at such an exciting event!