Friday, October 23, 2009

Geek Summit, Social Media Style

In a flurry of panels, one-on-one dialogues, product promos and surprise guests, the three day Web 2.0 Summit just held in San Francisco felt a bit like speed dating for tech companies:

"Hi, my name's HP and I'm eco-friendly. What's your sign?"
"Nice to meet you. I'm Google, and I can search your shared social media and make sure you're not too creepy."
"I'm MySpace. I'm a sensitive artist. Wanna come over and see my etchings?"

Bringing together Silicon Valley execs, media moguls, content producers and techie elite in one place wasn't an easy feat, but O'Reilly Media and TechWeb did a bang-up job, overflowing the ballroom at The Westin San Francisco Market Street.

Not afraid to bring out a little tension from high stakes competitors in the growing new media marketplace, John Battelle and Tim O'Reilly asked some sharp and intriguing questions of the speakers, enticing a Battle of the Bands style presentation as many presenters made major product announcements during the conference, including large screen demos and glossy booths. Wednesday's sponsoring headliner was Microsoft, introducing Bing's Twitter search, just before Google's encore performance announcing a Twitter deal and their upcoming Social Search.

The metropolitan crowd came laptops in-hand and left with plenty of exciting new ideas to take home and prepare for the next new new thing, but the waves rippling across the twitterverse will continue. Meanwhile, check out John Battelle's conference play list.

(Reposted from my column at

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Monday, October 19, 2009

I can't even keep track any more.

I'm involved in a lot of really incredible projects and have been over the past few years so much that I don't even have a running list, it all moves so quickly. But every once in a while I like to log some of it here for the few people (mostly friends & colleagues) who peruse my blog from time to time.

Recently, I joined the San Francisco Chronicle online “City Brights” local luminaries at and I'm really enjoying writing there. I wish I could duplicate myself and write there every day, but it's not in the cards quite yet. For Netroots Nation, I co-organized three panels. I've also been continuing to write for The Huffington Post, Digital Landing, BlogHer, MOMocrats, the Personal Democracy Forum (& techPresident).

I'm doing less right now for WomenCount due to the economic climate, but I'm still very involved. Through our radio show, I interviewed Marie Wilson, founder of The White House Project, and Christine Pelosi, California Democratic Party leader and daughter of Nancy Pelosi. Vivanista profiled me in their “Quintessential Careers” column in June. And as of September, the CRAVE SF Guide is out, a book featuring great women-owned businesses in the Bay Area including SFBayStyle, one of my projects.

As policy has been an ongoing theme, I've had the opportunity this year to be involved with 3 pretty major pieces of legislation nationally and at the state level. And although I only provided input on small pieces of each bill, I feel that I was able to help on some level. (Of course none of it has passed yet; let's wait and see.) Nationally, I reviewed cybersecurity legislation through the U.S. ACM Public Policy committee, I helped finalize Congresswoman Speier's bill to create a new presidential commission on women via WomenCount, and I worked through the Jr. Leagues of California State Public Affairs Committee that will help educate new mothers and their families on postpartum depression and related problems.

CFP 2010 will be in my neighborhood this year, so I'm looking forward to participating on the program committee however I can. It should be a great conference. In a few days, I head to the Web 2.0 Summit. I just recently helped tech review edit the Gov 2.0 compilation book being published by O'Reilly which I thoroughly enjoyed. I have another couple of potential book projects in the works as well. No official news yet there.

I've had a few new media clients through PublicEdge, and some new speaking engagements. I have been doing a lot of trainings to women's organizations on how to use new media for social good. I've also been working on a few iPhone apps helping with strategy in terms of new media as well. And I have some exciting meetings planned in Washington, D.C. that I hope to be able to write about soon as well.

Meanwhile, I continue to study and read and learn about technology and government, politics, policy, security, and all of the other areas that interest me. I never seem to have enough time to read all of the articles and books I'd like to read, but I try to stay on top of the most important issues.

I'm sure there's something else I've forgotten, but again, it's a lot to keep track of pretty much all the time. Cheers!

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