Simon Willison’s Weblog

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What are some great Big Data conferences around Dallas Texas?

We have a list of Big Data conferences and events in Texas on Lanyrd—there’s a DFW Big Data meetup which might be a good place to start (they have an event happening on May 15th).

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What are the best web design and web development conferences/ meetups in Central & Eastern Europe (2013)?

We have a list of Web Design conferences and events in Central and Eastern Europe on Lanyrd—you might find our full list of Conferences in Central and Eastern Europe useful as well.

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What is the best place to post a call for papers in the computer science community?

Our service Lanyrd has a feature to help keep track of conference CFPs. We tend to have more commercial conferences than academic ones, but those topics are definitely relevant to our core audience. For example, our Cloud conferences and events page shows six upcoming CFPs at the moment.

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What are some interesting and unusual tactics to draw people to your booth at a large conference or convention?

Make sure you have people on the stand who know their stuff—ideally people who built the thing you are promoting. Make it worthwhile for people to come and talk to you. Don’t have booth babes who are there for their looks rather than their expertise.

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How should one maximize their professional conference experience?

Take a look at How to maximize the conference experience as an attendee?

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What are some ways to organize conferences at a very low cost?

Find a venue sponsor: venues are the biggest expense for most events, and if you can find a company with their own conference-suitable facilities who will provide the space for free you’ve just massively slashed the cost of the event. Most BarCamps (at least in London) work on this basis.

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Why do academic conferences cost so much?

They’re usually a whole lot cheaper than industry conferences, where tickets can cost more than a thousand dollars.

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What are some ways to get a job from attending a conference?

Talk to people. Ask if they are hiring—if they aren’t, ask if they know anyone at the conference who is hiring. Make sure you have lots of business cards. Get other people’s business cards. Follow up afterwards. Connect with people on LinkedIn.

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Where can I find out about upcoming conferences, conventions, and trade shows in design, publishing, and elearning?

Our site, Lanyrd, is a crowdsourced directory of conferences and professional events. We’re extremely strong in areas such as Mobile, Web Design and User Experience, but we also have listings for Publishing and E-Learning. Try these pages:

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How do you get invited to speak at high profile events?

SXSW has an open call for proposals—you’ll need to submit a suggestion to the panel picker and encourage people to vote for you.

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How does one create innovation in a business conference? What’s new and different in this area?

Two formats worth investigating are unconferences and lightning talks.

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How many women are raped each year at tech conferences?

The geek feminism wiki maintains a comprehensive list of incidents at tech conferences: Timeline of incidents

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Are there specific elements of SXSW that make it a successful conference?

SXSW is a great event because of the people who go. There is no other technical/creative conference I can think of which attracts talented, interesting people at the same scale (20,000+ attendees).

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How do conferences make money?

Ticket sales and sponsorships.

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Is Lanyrd any good?

For some verticals, we’re excellent: we have by far the most comprehensive listing of tech/programming/startup-related conferences anywhere online, curated by our growing community of event enthusiasts. If you’re interested in events in those niches it’s absolutely worth signing up, trying out our recommendations and subscribing to our email updates.

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What would be the best design conference to attend in 2013?

That’s a pretty tricky question to answer... there are a lot of excellent UX conferences around (we’re listing 69 upcoming UX events on Lanyrd at the moment, and more get added frequently). A few things you should consider:

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What do convention goers want most from an convention location?

I’m sure this varies wildly for different people, so I’ll give you my personal opinions here:

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What is the best city to host a convention in US and why?

I can’t say I’ve tried every city, but my personal favourite US city to attend a conference in is Portland, OR. Amazing food, great public transport (the tram service is free within the city center, which includes the convention center) and plenty of interesting things to do and see outside of the conference.

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Can you advice me some newsletters where I can signup to receive on my email news about web/programming/startups conferences, talks, contests, events, classes?

Our site Lanyrd.com can help with this. You can sign in with Twitter or LinkedIn to see event recommendations based on who you are connected with. Then you can improve those recommendations by tracking topics in geographical areas (e.g. every Social Media event in the USA, or every Mobile event in San Francisco). If you give us your email address we’ll send you an automated weekly email letting you know about newly announced conferences or events that we think you’ll find interesting.

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What are good ideas and examples for event gamification?

Straight up points and badges style gamification seems a little contrived to me, but there’s definitely a lot to be said for activities that encourage delegates to meet new people.

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What are the top tech conferences for social, mobile and location based marketing?

Our service, Lanyrd, is a crowdsourced directory of conferences with very strong listings in those categories. Try the following pages:

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Where can I find a calendar of tech events and conferences all over the world?

We have a comprehensive, crowdsourced calendar of conferences and professional events on our service, Lanyrd.

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What was the Registration Fee for QCon NY 2012?

Registration opens in February—they haven’t announced ticket prices yet. You could always email them and ask.

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How should people organise software developer focused conferences in order that they achieve socially acceptable representation across relevant demographics (eg gender, ethnicity) in terms of speakers and attendees?

No one wants to feel like they have only been invited to speak because of their gender/other demographic factors, especially since they risk losing some the respect of the audience if there is a feeling that they weren’t invited purely for their expertise.

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What are the best tech conferences & meetups to attend as an investor?

We have a good list of upcoming Startup related events on Lanyrd here: Startup conferences and events—including both iCal and RSS feeds and the ability to sign up and receive email updates. New events are being added by our community all the time.

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What is the average registration fee for  attending an international conference?

It varies wildly depending on a whole bunch of factors: the length of the conference (one day events are a LOT cheaper than two day events), the industry (medical and financial events are way more expensive than education conferences), the country it’s being held in, the venue, the city (central London will be a lot more pricey than a medium sized town somewhere). I don’t think you’ll be able to get a good single answer to this question.

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Which web startup conferences are there nowadays?

We have a pretty comprehensive list on Lanyrd—the site works like wikipedia, so if there are any we are missing you can sign in and add them to our Startups topic: Startup conferences and events

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What are some programming conferences and events being held near Detroit, MI?

We have a crowdsourced listing of conferences and events in Michigan here: Conferences in Michigan | Lanyrd—two that might be relevant to you are Agile and Beyond 2013, 9th March 2013 and Kalamazoo X Conference 2013, 13th April 2013

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Where can I find videos of talks from big tech/science/startup conventions?

Our site http://lanyrd.com/ encourages people to add links to videos from events all around the world—we have nearly 9,000 videos indexed now (with detailed metadata about speakers, topics and locations). Take a look at our collection here: http://lanyrd.com/video/

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What are the top Apps/Mobile conferences & events for 2013?

The biggest is still Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February—tens of thousands of attendees and representatives from pretty much every mobile company.

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