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BarCamp Vancouver 2008 Notes

A week and a half ago (let's say on Sept 28) I attended BarCamp Vancouver 2008! Despite the fact that I hang around these events all the time this was officially my first BarCamp. Had a lot of fun that day and I'm still digesting some of the info; here are some of my notes and observations.

Marketing for a cause - check out kiva.org a micro-loan service for helping out people in third world countries. We created a Barcamp 2008 group, so check that out as a place where we can pool some resources ($$) in the name of this event.

Laptop bedouin - working independently with your digital career. Some interesting discussion surrounding living on Galiano Island and working independently from places like Malta or Morocco. Some helpful tips were to make sure you meet your client face-to-face at least once and to make your presence seem local (by being available at the right times). Also, keep your finances local (to Vancouver say) and travel using the 3-month rule of thumb... travelling like a tourist, but working as well.

RDF - try checking our the Operator plugin for Firefox to find and utilize RDF microformats already embedded in webpages like Google Maps, Yahoo! Upcoming, and Flickr (location). Something I thought was that utilizing this data through a plugin for Firefox is not the easiest way for average users to utilize this data. Instead maybe a Javascript library to make options available in a way much like date and event handling in Apple Mail. This keeps the information in context while still making it easier to "jump" into it. My view is that this information is going to become more popular as I'm thinking context is starting to revolutionize the web.

RDF2 - Media re-use, adding the Creative Commons microformat for allowing your content to be found this way. I believe my site is already like this so check the footer of my page for an example on how to RDF-ize your website.

Ubiquity - David Drucker gave me a personal demo on the great Ubiquity plugin for Firefox... creates a Quicksilver-like prompt within your browser to interact with content. Some really great tie-ins for this is with microformats and RDF. All scripts are externally hosted, allowing developers to update and improve remotely. Scripts are easy to write and find. Reminded me of Fluid, kind of a new way of utilizing a browser. Boris Mann also mentioned an interesting idea of componetizing pieces of a webpage, allowing people to copy, paste, and share these services. A good example is a File Upload and Thumbnail creation piece. Why do we build this multiple times and why can't we just share these pieces using a distributed model?

Photocamp - try reversing your prime lense and shooting to get a cheap macro! Hadn't tried this before, here are some results where I'm using an 85mm (f/2) on the body and a 35mm (f/2) reversed:

DSC_6202

Thanks to the organizers for a great time and I'm looking forward to next year!