Friday, March 24, 2006

ACDC 2006: Day 2 - Brain hurts

My brain hurts.

You think sitting through a conference session is hard work?

How about when each session is actually five mini-prezos by some of the most insanely brilliant and inspiring people you've ever seen, and there are four of these sessions each day? I wonder if one can have a surfeit of inspiration, if one can O.D. on ideas and inspiration, just like one can have too much water?

But I'm not complaining. I'll take this inspiration over familiar mundanity and easy experiences any day.

I've got 30 pages of handwritten notes (from today plus yesterday's keynote) and 30+ pictures (just from today, which I've uploaded, starting here) just from today. I expect I'll get the notes up sometime. Just not this weekend.

My brain hurts. I had a headache toward the end of the first afternoon session, my back and neck were sore. Better now, after dinner at Chandra (Thai, rice in the shape of a heart, sizzling spicy seafood, coconut ice cream with raisins for eyes and cashewnut for a smile - I'll tell more later) and a shower afterwards.

I'm going to leave my laptop in the motel room tomorrow - it'll be nice not to have that weight for the 1-mile jaunt to and from the conference, as well as not having to lug it around at the conference.


Thursday, March 23, 2006

ACDC 2006: Keynote

Opening speeches on the theme of Radical Craft from Richard Koshalek, Chee Pearlman, Adam Gopnik and Ricky Jay.

I've got notes but I need to go to sleep now.

I'll add them tomorrow but, in the meantime, go see the pictures.

Art Center Design Conference 2006: Day 1 - Waiting for the Keynote

I'm posting from the Simulcast Lounge at the Art Center South Campus Wind Tunnel Building.

Free WiFi!

Waiting for the keynote at 530pm by Adam Gopnik (New Yorker writer), which will be followed by a stage performance by Ricky Jay (magician, math-magician?, actor - Tomorrow Never Dies, Boogie Nights, David Mamet movies, etc.). I wonder if Ricky will repeat his performance in 2004, the first time this biannual conference was held.

Signed up around 4pm, walked around, watched the setup on the Main Stage, took pictures (will upload to Flickr later). They've got three huge screens, one to each side of the stage, and one halfway in above the audience. There are three lovely patterned banners hanging behind the stage, and two murals on either side, below the screens. Nice pinkish-bluish ambient lighting, lots of Steelcase chairs (they're really pushing the Think and Leap models), as well as mini-lounges and some high-table cafe seating throw in so it's not just rows and rows of chairs. Altogether, a cool-looking affair.

OK. It's 5. Time to get a seat.

[ Speakers and conference schedule ]

Cab driver story

The cab driver told me a story on the way to SFO this morning.

Whenever I take a cab, I always make it a point to ask the driver, "How's business?" I take it that they're one of the leading indicators of business health. Apparently, things are going very well. He said he was doing at least twice as well as last year. His cab company has an exclusive deal with the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, so only cabs from that company can pick up guests from the hotel.

Anyway, to punctuate his point, he tells me he recently picked up a guest from the Ritz-Carlton who asked to be taken to Reno. Dispatch said to charge $500 for it. Passenger said OK. He does this twice a year. Hates to fly. Hates to drive on the highway. And told cabbie to slow down when he was going 60. It took six hours to get there (and 3.5 hours to get back). Cabbie had no complaints. Passenger paid $500 and tipped him $100.

As cabbie handed me my bag at the airport, he said, "Anytime you want to drive to Reno, give me a call!"