SAScon 2013 The Chair’s Perspective

Last week saw the fourth SAScon event in Manchester, with 30 panels and four keynotes running across two days.

If you missed it…tough. It was great.

Ok, if you really want you can see the excellent write-ups from State of Search for Day 1 and Day 2. You can download some of the presentations, or you can see loads of photos on the SAScon Google+ page.

As chair of the event, I had a different perspective to most people on the event so I wanted to jot down a few quick thoughts for posterity.

      • The new venue was tremendous. Being in a lecture theatre certainly added a more professional experience to each session. Especially when you’re looking at this audience.
      • Interviewing Mike Little, the co-founder of WordPress was nerve-racking, so much so that I didn’t dare drink at the social event the night before! I needn’t have worried. Mike was a great speaker, a fantastic interviewee¬†and amazingly humble in light of his achievement.

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    • Questions – my god SAScon attendees are a vocal lot. In just about every session we ran out of time to field every question. The breaks between sessions become really important since they allow the debate to spill over outside the lecture theatre.
    • Presenters delivering something unexpected is priceless. I was amazed by Clancy Child’s last-minute demo of Google Analytics Realtime on his Pebble Watch, and Matmi’s dancing monkeys were brilliant.
    • Like any event, there are always a couple of last-minute speaker drop-outs, through illness, travel disruptions etc. As always the team coped really well with these and I specifically want to thanks Neil Hardy, Bryan Adams (no, not that one), Gemma Birch and Mike Litson for embracing the challenge!

And if the evening social is more your style…here’s two videos from each end of the 100 double-row Jaeger Train…choo! choo!

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