It is my first time to attend BarCamp Hong Kong 2010. Actually, I have no idea about it before I was invited by a friend a few days before 18 Sep 2010. After I read the rules, I found that it is quite interesting that everyone can have chance to share its own ideas, stories and experience. All participants who are the first time to join are welcomed to present. Yes, presentation. I really have no idea of visitors' background. Will they find it not interested at all?
According to the Wikipedia and its own official website, it was born in Palo Alto, California in 2005. The original name of Bar Camp is Foo Camp, abbreviation of "Friend of O'Reilly Camp". Many technical fans and developers are invited. Because of programming slang FOOBAR, it was renamed to Bar Camp.
Now it becomes an international and user-generated conference (unconferene). All participants are welcomed to talk, to present, to share, to learn and to help each other if needed in the presentation. Since 2007, the first Bar Camp Hong Kong was so successful. The scale of unconferene is getting large and more sponsors have joined.
When I arrived at PolyU, I found that there were so many visitors mainly from Hong Kong, United States and Singapore. It is about 400 persons from various sectors, from development to marketing, from social enterprise to education.
The period of 3-word self-introduction is quite interesting because even if you take 3 seconds to introduce yourself, it still takes 20 minutes. It is challenging to make them to remember you by three terms only, your name, job, location and favourite things.
After the key notes of the organizer, it is a topic suggestion period. All of us jot down the topic and category on a paper and then put it on the wall outside. The organizer would help to re-arrange according to the category to form 8 different parallel sessions. The rest of conference is left to the participants.
Each presenter have 30 minutes. I was wondering whether they were willing to attend my session.
According to the Law of Two Feet, if the audience found the presentation not interested, they would just leave the room.
Even though we are encouraged to present in Cantonese in Bar Camp Hong Kong, the foreigners would make you conduct it in English.
During the presentation, I was quite delighted that some audiences did raise their questions. Some did try to help me on cabling problem. Though it is not a perfect presentation, at least I share the trends and ideas on education/learning on the Internet. A few audiences also appreciated it.
It is good to make some friends, to find new job and to search for candidates. Moreover, I think it is good model for other community based event like Wikipedian gathering. It really encourages participation, initiatives and free sharing. It lets everyone enjoy it.
BarCamp is still running in my head for many days.