Imx Fix in my experience
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April 25, 2003 11:28 AM

Almost everyone I've met at the conference so far (who knows who I work for) has asked me if AOL is downsizing, each time with a tiny glint in their eye. It's definitely a pattern, only broken by one person, Clay Shirky, who is definitely taking an eye towards social software and it implications. I wish I had more time to speak with him, but he's toting his son around and generally looks like a busy guy. I will likely do more to seek out and read his stuff instead.

The other folks I've met fall into two general groups, O'Reilly insiders who seem to be party geeks, and then everyone else. It kind of reminds me of college for some reason. It's no wonder that social software, or social computing is a big deal here this week. Oddly though, I have only seen one technology segment actually show social software in action, and that would be Flash based apps coming out of Macromedia, Laszlo Systems and GNE. The only compiled social app I've seen in use, or show a compelling use is Hydra.

Due to the high percentage of Macintoshes and OSX users, and the ubiquity of wireless around here, the Rendezvous technology has been showcased in practical ways. I've mentioned Hydra before, and I should also mention iChat. Sometimes when you take a look at the amount of people available thru iChat over the Rendezvous bridge, you will see 20 or so people, sometimes none. I've only seen one iChat chat take place since I arrived on Tuesday.

Today's sessions look to be pretty promising with more talks about social software and web services. After that, it's plane trains and automobiles for me.