MadCamp (BarCampMadison the 4th) happened on August 27th, 2011 and this is my review…
Now, you’ll see me using things like “MadCamp” and “BarCampMadison the 4th” but they are the same thing. At some point there was talk about changing the name from the nerdy “BarCamp” to the less-nerdy “MadCamp” but I don’t think the transition was ever 100% complete. barcampmadison.org is the domain, and that’s what the logo says, but MadCamp is what it was called. (I wouldn’t even bring this up, except to avoid confusion, and the fact that I work in the branding industry. But what’s in a name, eh?)
Urban Land Interests provided space in the US Bank Building right on the Capitol Square in Madison. It’s easy to get to, you can park around the corner all day for $3, and there’s an amazing view of the Capital. That’s the good stuff… the not as good stuff is that the sessions were spread out among 3 floors. The ground floor lobby served as the common area, with 2 session rooms, and there were 2 more session rooms on the 8th floor (in the Murfie office) and 2 more on the 9th floor (which was the main area for BarCampMadison3.) But hey, thanks to Twilio and Greg’s MadCamp Notifier, there was a bit of assistance with session notification.
As usual, I brought too much crap, including The Photo Booth (photos are here) and the latest revision of the Time Lapse Bot (video to come) and I brought A/V equipment, much of which failed during the event. Still, I managed to record a few sessions.
For each BarCampMilwaukee, we’ve always had Introductions, where each person says who they are, what they are interested in, etc. Last year we gave people about 20 seconds to do their intro, and timed it. (You can watch it here, btw.) For MadCamp, there were no intros. but instead they created a Camper Wall, which worked like this: When you registered, you got your photo taken, which was then printed on a photo printer, and then attached to a printout on the wall with your info. It was cool to be able to browse the wall and see the people there, and be able to find them easily. Using a photo from that day was brilliant. I love avatars and 5 year old head-shots as much as the next geek, but seeing a recent (that day!) photo on the wall made it easy to identify people. Still, I really am a fan of having everyone introduce themselves.
In Part 2 you can read about the sessions I attended: MadCamp ReCap: Sessions.