On Saturday I was in Beijng, where I attended the first Foo Camp in China (pictures). As usual this Foo Camp was organized by Tim O’Reilly and his team. About 80 people participated in this unconference. If you are unfamiliar with this concept, it basically means that it’s not a normal conference where you listen to speeches, but a seminar where everybody is involved actively in every session. There was no schedule, but at the end of the opening session everybody who wanted to discuss something could sign up for that. The board was filled in no time.
For me the event was interesting not only from a business perspective (Got to know an interesting start-up with an idea I totally believe in, and even learned some new things about online gaming in China – thanks Frank!) but also from a personal perspective (meeting interesting people, and talking with smart people about things you normally do not talk about too much).
China Foo was not just about tech as many people think, but you could talk about everything that you are passionate about. I had a good discussion with Paul Denlinger about the whole global warming problematic, and we both agree that this is underestimated by most people. Why are people so passive about it? Do they not realize what is happening, or do they just not care? Things can get out of hand very quickly, but most people just sit and wait. I am worried about this. Paul sent me an interesting article today, read it if you are interested in this subject. One small part I want to point out here: About 11,000 years ago the earth went from a warm, wet climate to a cold, dry climate within 3 years (results from the Greenland ice coring experiment). Think about it, a complete climate change in just 3 years. Can the collective power of the people -through the internet or other technologies- still do something to avoid this?
After China Foo I took a plane back to Shanghai (yes, that might be a cause of Global Warming), because I was going to meet Gary and Bill for drinks. Finally a flight without much delay. And it was my last flight in the next 2-3 months, because I don’t want to miss the birth of our baby. Nice to know that I don’t have to travel for the next couple of weeks!