A few of us are in London this week attending the Future of Web Apps conference. I’m sure a number of blogs will come out of the experience. This one concerns a rather mad one that ended the first day.
I’m sure some of you will be aware of the Digg Nation Podcasts hosted each week by Digg founder Kevin Rose. This is reportedly the most popular video podcast on the web and essentially consists of Rose and his buddy talking about some cool / funny / unusual articles that have come up on digg.com over the previous week.
I’ve never actually watched one despite being a casual user of Digg and so I was intrigued by the prospect of the first day of the conference being finished by a live show of Digg Nation broadcast directly from the main stage rather than Rose’s living room.
20mins before the filming was due to commence the 1200 seater venue was virtually packed and by the time it started it was standing room only. When Rose and his pal entered the venue and walked on stage it was literally like the Foo Fighters or some other stadium band had come out. People where on chairs whooping and cheering, large sections of the crowd where holding their fists aloft, most with the rock salute of pinky and index finger out and some had there Macbooks in the air with messages written on for their idols to look at.
Crazy. It was suddenly rock and roll to be a geek, talking about other geek’s blog posts!
Me being me I started thinking about the psychology of it all and mulled on how far programming and development had come since my first day at Uni 12 years ago when an emaciated young man waddled over and sat next to me and announced his greeting with a ‘hellooooo, IIIII’mmm Peter’ in a voice that I can only describe as John Major meets Dalek… to the present days where ‘computer geeks’ are now cool ‘web application developers’ with macbooks and metrosexual attire… and even those who aren’t cool now have media champions to look up to, who validate them, who speak for their generation and make it cool to love gadgets, spend all day indoors online… AND who now get the girls too! (if the marriage proposal from the audience was anything to go by!)
I have to say the show was really entertaining, and very funny in an american Baddiel and Skinner kind of way and interesting too as they commented on all things web and social. An hour flew by and the audience hung on every word that was spoken interacting spontaneously throughout – very web 2.0 in fact!
I’ll be tuning in to some more episodes now and watching with fascination as Digg Nation inevitably grows in popularity and influence.
Bill Gates once said while lecturing a load of high school students: “Be kind to geeks because one day they’ll employ you”…it now seems they’ll be your celebrity heroes too!