Yikes, People!

Yikes, People!
Bugs Bunny: Listen, Dracula… Have you ever had the feeling you were being watched? Like the eyes of strange things are upon you? Look, out there in the audience… Gossamer: People! Aieeeeeeeeeee! — From Hare Raising Hare, featuring Gossamer the Monster!

One side effect of attending SXSW—and I apologize to people who are sick of hearing about it, but it was one of those life path altering types of experiences, so you’re going to have to put up with this for a while—was that I became aware that there are lots of people saying and doing lots of very cool things. For the first time, I’ve actually started using an RSS reader (Bloglines) so I can keep tabs on several blogs where interesting conversations are going on. They fall under the following categories:

  • Community & Individual Empowerment — blogs that talk about or explore issues surrounding the nature of being yourself and being heard. The BlogHer panelists and moderators, in addition to the Creating Passionate Users and Cluetrain-related communities I’ve added to my reader. I’ve been in a fervor all week, percolating a manifesto of my own to drive my next phase of whatever the hell it is I am doing. The cool thing (from a certain perspective, anyway) is that I’m no longer that concerned about what it is specifically. I know it’s the right thing for me to do. Yeah! And it seems to be going around.

  • Web Design & Development — I am totally sold on the semantic web and standards-based markup. Makes sense, because I like to make sense of things and I tend to be picky about words and proper categorization. The funny thing is the only panel I attended on anything remotely webby was Web Standards and SEO, primarily because I was curious who “Eric Meyer” was because people kept talking about him in hushed tones, and in the process of finding out who he was I got the idea that The Semantic Web is a Good Thing. Also, apparently I can not meet great people who happen to be great web designers, and not want to emulate their standards.

  • Tool Makers — I started going through some of the business cards from SXSW last night, visiting websites, and holy crap there are people doing awesome things I’ve never heard of until now. I’ve subscribed to a few of the blogs to keep more up-to-date on what they’re up to. People are busy! I got to get my schwerve on!

  • Personal Blogs — Naturally, everyone at SXSW seemed to have a blog. The unexpected thing was that every card I have points to an excellent blog or website. Having met some of these people in person, and stumbled upon more while joining in the frenzy of sxswbowling tagging on Flickr, I have the tremendous desire to keep tabs on what’s going on with them, because they’re cool. The general rule of thumb is that if I got your card, I’m now subscribed to your blog. Fortunately people are too busy to write a whole lot :-)

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p>So yeah, this is all wonderful, but now that I’m determined to be part of a community, I’m having a bad case of bashful blogger; the words just aren’t, er, “flowing” with their normal, um, “ease”. I was going somewhere with this, but I think I’ll just stop here. “Small steps…”

8 Comments

  1. Dave Seah 14 years ago

    Oh yeah, now I remember: it’s that I have suddenly become aware that I’m about to actively participate in conversations across the internet, whereas before this was the sort of thing I didn’t do. But I feel the need to participate. Feels good!

    ——-

  2. Jeff L 14 years ago

    Start small man – we’re only having conversation across a few towns.  :-)

    It is amazing though – my RSS feeds almost doubled when I got home from SXSW.

  3. Ian 14 years ago

    SXSW had a similar effect on me. It not only inspired me to start writing a blog again, but also inspired me to comment more on blogs I’ve been reading for a while.

    It’s also opened my eyes to the number of face-to-face gatherings going on. In my opinion being active in the ‘blogosphere’ is great, but nothing beats talking to a real person. I feel that a lot of people have been inspired to particpate more in both areas, and that makes me happy.

  4. Rory Francis 14 years ago

    Dave –

    Care to share some of the new feeds you’ve added?  Or the tools you’ve found?

    Also, Eric Meyer presented to a our local Macromedia User Group a couple of years ago.  It was actually a fairly small group, which meant also the opportunity to be fairly up-close and personal.  Great guy.

    If you want to discuss standards based design and development, get in touch, I’ve been doing it, or attempting to do it since my early days of web development.

    On SXSW, wish I could have been there, and the momentum everybody has brought back with them has been infectious – even via this digital medium.  So please, keep the thoughts rolling.

  5. Katy 14 years ago

    You’ve discovered Bloglines…. Oh Dear!

    Productivity will be right out of the window now!

  6. James Neal 14 years ago

    Dave,
    First of all I have to say your blog rocks!  Your design, graphics, layout and above all your content are exactly what blogging should be about. Any reason you chose Bloglines?  I’ve just begun tracking blogs myself and hope to have my own blog up in about 3 months.  I tried Bloglines for awhile but I really find Newsgator a much more user-friendly interface.

    I just moved out of the Boston metro area (Cambridge/Somerville)after six years working in academic book publishing mostly in the editorial realm.  I am back in South Carolina which is my home and will be applying to graduate programs in library and information science.  I am interested in education and technology in the K-12 enviroment.  Your blog has been an inspiration.  Look for me in the blogosphere soon.

  7. Dave Seah 14 years ago

    Rory: I’m just starting to dig through the blogs now…just have a handful of them. I’ll probably post an OPML file later, after the list stabilized :-) Eric Meyer struck me as a very down-to-earth and personable guy…I’m glad I saw him speak!

    James: Thanks for the kind words! Good luck with the education and technology in K-12…it’s something that’s of interest to me too. Empowering people with the right tools, especially at an early age,  to create independent thinkers and humane problem solvers is pretty darn important.

  8. Dave Seah 14 years ago

    Yes, the SXSW fever rolls on :-) I think everyone from there took a little piece of it with them, and we’re all trying to transplant it into local soil :-)