Last week I attended the annual Webstock conference in Wellington, New Zealand. I have attended several tech conferences in recent years, but this one was by far the best. The calibre of speakers, quality of presentations and attention to detail was incredible. Everything from the opening video presentation to the program guide was beautifully crafted. Most conference swag I receive quickly gets relegated to gym-gear, but I’ll be wearing my coveted Webstock 2011 bag with pride!
Webstock, started back in 2006, attracts high-profile speakers from all over the world that give interesting and inspirational talks about everything Web-related. It’s not just about the technology, but also what it means to apply that technology to our daily lives. How the web impacts the lives of non-techies was clearly demonstrated in presentations by Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley – two musicians who talked about how the web has enabled them to manage their careers, interact with fans and reach audiences around the world.
I won’t cover all the talks here, as this has already been done, including this excellent report by Chris Barton from the NZ Herald.
It was not just the speakers that made Webstock so great. During the two-day conference, creative people from all over the country gathered to share ideas and experiences.
For me, the message from the conference was nicely summed-up in the closing remarks by organiser Natasha Lampard:
“Everything you learn is a means to an end. The end is actually getting out there and doing something with it.”
Many people come up with great ideas. Few act on those ideas and actually go out and create something. It’s too easy to sit back and over-analyze an idea. Sometimes fear can take over and you begin to think your idea is not “good enough”. I know this has happened many times to me.
“What you actually do within 24 hours of having a creative idea will spell the difference between success and failure” – Buckminster Fuller.
If you have a great idea, go out and start creating it – now! Talk to people, get feedback and refine the idea. Don’t keep it to yourself for fear that others may steal your idea. Ideas themselves are worthless, it’s the execution that matters.
In the words of presenter Jason Cohen:
“Less reading. Less worrying. More doing.”