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Portland Ignites Gnomedex

Speaking of Ignite Portland, Chris and Ponzi Pirillo, and the other organizers of the best geek conference I’ve ever been to, Gnomedex, pinged me last week to see if any Ignite Portland alumni would be interested in giving their talks at Gnomedex 8.0 this year.

As a result, at Gnomedex on Saturday morning, there’s going to be a “mini-Ignite Portland” with selections of popular talks from past Ignite Portland events. (This isn’t an official Legion of Tech event.) There’s also going to be a similar “mini Ignite Seattle” on Friday afternoon, with Brady Forest and his cadre of Igniters.

I somehow got roped into being the “emcee’, introducing the talks, etc (I’m not crazy about getting up on stage), but I hope to get through the intro quickly and sit down fast. 😉

Rick Turoczy over at Silicon Florist has a writeup, with a list of the talks that will be featured, and you can see the “speaker bio” page for the talks on the Gnomedex site.

Here are the talks that are migrating north to Seattle:

The coolest thing about all of this? The idea for Ignite Portland was hatched at last year’s Gnomedex. They highlighted some of the previous evening’s Ignite Seattle talks, and I loved them. The energy and excitement were off the charts, and I immediately started thinking (and Twitter-ing) about how awesome it would be to do an Ignite event in Portland. Connections and plans were made, venues were filled to capacity, Legion of Tech was born, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Besides the obvious coolness of these talks, there’s something poetic about Ignite Portland making an appearance at Gnomedex. It goes to show that a lot of really cool things can happen in the space of one year! :-)

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At SIGGRAPH in L.A., Watching the Future of Computing Unfold

I’m at the SIGGRAPH 2008 conference in Los Angeles this week. My group, Intel Software Network, has a lot of cool stuff going on this week around the recent paper that was published on the Larrabee architecture.

I just put up a post on the ISN blog, about the history of SIGGRAPH and the ACM, and then waxing a bit philosophical about Larrabee and the future of computing as we know it:

I can’t shake the feeling that the Larrabee Architecture paper that was just published by the ACM, written mostly by Intel engineers, is one of those landmark events in computing. I’m really not trying to add to the hype that’s already surrounding Larrabee. There’s enough of that already. But it really is going to be a huge leap in computing. Imagine that in a couple of years, instead of having one, or two, or maybe four cores, your computer could have a Larrabee card with 24 or 32 (I’m guessing – this number isn’t final) programmable x86 cores that can be set to any task that benefits from massive parallelism (like, say, making that 3D game you’re playing look REALLY pretty and smooth), along with 8 “bigger” traditional Nehalem (I mean, Core i7) processor cores that do the things your current single or dual core processor does. Oh, and with Hyperthreading, all of those cores can run more than one thread, which makes them appear as even more “virtual” processors to the operating and software that use them.

How in the world are operating systems, applications, and games going to have to change to deal with this massive shift to many cores and many threads?

I’ll be posting more, and helping to get some videos of the cool stuff here at SIGGRAPH posted quickly to ISN’s video site, Take Five, so keep any eye out over there for any cool stuff I come across.

It’s things like this that make me love my job! :-)

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Charlene Li’s coming to Portland, wants to have a drink with you

Charlene Li, late of Forrester Research, co-author of the book Groundswell, and all around social media rock star, is going to be in Portland tomrrow night, and she wants to have a drink with you.

We’re having a “tweetup” at the bar in the Governor Hotel in Portland, starting at 8:30PM on Wednesday night, July 16. Charlene says if you bring your copy of Groundswell, she’ll sign it, and buy you a drink. :-)

You can get the details on Upcoming (you can RSVP if you want, but this is way informal, so no guarantees, of course – it’s a bunch of people descending on a hotel bar). You can also see what the Twittersphere is saying about Charlene, the tweetup, and Groundswell on the spanking new search.twitter.com (formerly Summize, a.k.a. the best dang Twitter search engine out there, period). You know, in case you want to see if any of your friends are going to be there.

Hope you can make it! :-)

Update: Bummer. Charlene’s flight got cancelled, and she’s not going to get into PDX until around midnight, so we had to cancel the tweetup. Sorry! :-( You can see go see Charlene speak at the Internet Strategy Forum Summit tomorrow (Thursday), though.

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Tonight we Ignite Portland for the Third Time

Tonight is Ignite Portland 3. We’re having it at the Bagdad Theater again, because that venue was just awesome last time, and it fits the spirit and character of Ignite Portland to a tee. The presentation lineup is just stellar, and we have a (hopefully) more streamlined “advance tickets + general admission” that should reduce the size of the lines (which stretched for BLOCKS for Ignite Portland 2) but still let people just show up and get it. The 450+ free advance tickets were gone in less than 24 hours, and there’s every indication that we’re going to pack the Bagdad to fire code again (700+).

If you’re coming, look for me and say “hi!”. I’ll be the geek in the cargo pants, black t-shirt, and bright orange Crocs. 😉 If you can’t make it, you can still partake in the parts of the event that will take place online (the backchannel chatter on Twitter, watch the videos tomorrow, etc.). I just put up a post on igniteportland.com with details on how to experience Ignite to the fullest.

I’m very proud to be one of the organizers of such a cool, popular event. The folks from Legion of Tech (a non profit organization we formed to manage organizing events like Ignite Portand, BarCamp Portland, Startupalooza, and the monthly LoT Happy Hour meetups) are awesome in every way, and I’m humbled and honored to get to work with them (I’m on the board). I can’t wait to see how IP3 turns out tonight, and I’m already looking forward to Ignite Portland 4! :-)

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More Video from Shanghai: Josh’s IDF Video Diary

Here’s another collection of video clips from the two days of IDF Shanghai. Highlights include a look around the IDF venue (Shanghai International Convention Center), the Huangpu riverfront at night (gorgeous!), a peek at Chinese TV in my hotel room, a look at what websites are blocked in China and which aren’t, some “man on the street” video with Intel’s new Mobile Internet Devices, a look at the terrifying chaos that is pedestrian and vehicle traffic in Shanghai, and a cameo appearance by Celene Dion. :-)


Like the walkabout video I posted before, these little clips were all shot in HD on my little Aiptek Go-HD video camera, then pieced together in Quicktime Pro and rendered down to 640×360 on my Elgato Turbo.264. And then converted to low quality Flash by YouTube. :-) The video is about 10 minutes long, and I’ll probably post a higher quality version than what I can get from YouTube when I get home.I’ll probably keep shooting and posting these while I’m in Shanghai. I’m here until next week – going to spend a few days working with some of the Intel Software Network team here at Intel Shanghai. And I kind of like the style/technique of these videos. I’ve had lots of people ask me how I’m doing this. It’s very simple: I turn the screen on the camera so I can see myself, then hold it out at arm’s length, pointed at me, and pivot around in place to show what’s around me, while keeping myself on screen. Kind of fun to shoot, and I like the results.You know the drill – leave me a comment and tell me what you think. Want to see more like this? Hate it? Have something about Shanghai that you want me to shoot? Drop me a line, and let me know. And thanks for watching! :-)

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Ignite Portland 2 was one of the best nights of my life!

Now that I’ve had a couple of days to recover, here’s my recap post about Ignite Portland 2. It was, in short, one of the best nights of my life. It was so amazing to see how it all came together – the volunteers, the presenters, and the crowd. The crowd! We filled up the Bagdad – they had to cut people off at about 750, and we were so sorry to have to turn away about 150 people (from what I was told). Rick Turoczy of Silicon Florist has done an incredible job of rounding up everyone’s take on the evening. Don’ t miss his roundup post.

The best moment of the night came when I was sitting in my seat, down in front, surrounded by people who had worked so hard to make this happen, and who had become good friends in the process. And we, in turn, were surrounded by all the amazing volunteers, speakers, and sponsors that made it even possible. And we were all in turn surrounded by a crowd of exited people, enjoying themselves in a very cool theater. It all just sank down on me right then, a warm, fuzzy, happy feeling. I realized that this was the coolest thing I have accomplished so far in my life. :-)

So, here are some photos and commentary of how the evening went, from my point of view. I was the first to arrive at the Bagdad, at about 3:00 PM, to get set up. Plus, I had never been to the Bagdad, and I wanted to check the place out. It’s a beautiful building, and has a very cool “Portland’ vibe.

I was also surprised to see “Ignite Portland” up on the main marquee, since I thought we had asked them not to put it up there (we knew we didn’t need help drawing any more of a crowd!):

Marquee

I went inside, and looked around before Todd, Dawn, and the others arrived. I fell in love with the Bagdad – it’s a very cool place. As you’ll soon see…

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