Home and catching up on EtCon

Hmm, something seems to have gone terribly wrong… I appear to be in a city lacking endless gorgeous houses and stunning hilltop views. Ah, I must be home. Oh well.

I just noticed that the EtCon 2003 At-a-glance page has links to a lot of the PowerPoint (or whatever) files for the talks. In an ideal world it would also link to the collaborative Hydra notes that were taken for pretty much every session. Thankfully, Trevor Smith has collected them all together and even provided a single zip of the lot (at the bottom of the page). He even provides the Template that was used to jump-start some of the later sets of notes.

It was fascinating to watch the etiquette and development of this multi-person note-taking evolve over the course of the conference. Hydra could probably use more kinds of permissions (read-only, etc) as things can get out of hand. And some people are better than others at integrating their thoughts with existing notes, so the quality tends to vary. It may be useful to assign different roles to people. Possible tasks: the on-going note-taking; filling in things that were missed; formatting and/or spell-checking; Googling for external links; possibly representing the reactions of the audience; maybe adding things in that appear on IRC. The process impressed me far more than I expected however, and was one of the most interesting things at the event.

It’s a shame that the IRC log isn’t presented in a more useful way, ie, divided by time so you can quickly jump to the conversation for particular sessions.