1. I keep getting into conversations (on blogs, on the phone, in person) where people are very forthcoming with their feelings about “tech conferences” — in general, people “love the conference interaction”, hate “the vendor pitch”, and aren’t impressed by most panels. To that end, I’m trying very hard to hit “the right mix” at Defrag. What do I mean?
A) I’m thinking that solo presentations should be 30 minutes. Am I nuts? I just like the idea of cramming stuff in and making people work for it.
B) Doing “A” frees up more and more and more time for interaction (ie, open space time, etc). And I’m going to pound on this one. Interaction (in sessions, in hallways, etc) is the *key* to Defrag.
C) Panels - yes, there will be some, but they’re done with a very specific aim in mind, and I think they’re more like “discussions” (where the audience is involved) than panels.
D) Tools — I keep hearing the “all the interesting conversation is going on in the audience” comment. We’re going to overload ourselves on tools: Facebook groups, wikis on 2 walls of the room, jaiku channels, etc….If the tools exists, we’re going to find out whether its useful or not.
2) Second note - I need your help. I’m trying to discover the true value of Facebook (with relation to Defrag). We’ve got a ““group” and an “event” - and we’ve even started to see registrations come to Defrag through FB, but what am I missing? My sense is that FB is the next great “conference promotion” platform - but I don’t know exactly how. What should I be doing that I’m not? Thoughts?