The state of NOW, not later, was the focus of Jeff Pulver's inspiring Los Angeles edition of his 140conf. While the inaugural 140conf in New York this summer was very clearly inspired by Twitter and the character limit of a tweet, in Hollywood the spirit of the conference was more clearly about the character of the 140 characters who took the stage over the two days. The famed Kodak Theatre was the home to 140 speakers that ranged from comedians to cancer patients, from homeless to household names, from business leaders to folks trying to give us the business. Those in attendance laughed, cried, and more importantly, connected, and brought their online lives into a real time environment. It was a thought provoking, invigorating, inspiring event, as evidenced by the continued conversation on Twitter.
My own small contribution to the event was called "Is That A Phone In Your Pocket, Or Are You Just Enjoying The Show?" in which I tried to highlight both the benefits, and some of the downsides to our always on, always connected lives, thanks to our ever-present mobile devices. In a nutshell, while it is truly amazing to have instant access to our Facebook friends, our Twitter stream and virtually all of the information on the Internet in the palms of our hands, we too often "tune out" to tune in to our phones. In the end, we should make sure our constant access to "real time" information doesn't ruin our "real time" engaging with the people around us. What do you think?
Here is my short presentation, and thanks again to Jeff for welcoming me as a character at 140conf LA.