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Saturday Salon: Packing 'Em In

Every time I think the Salons have set an unbeatable standard, the next one comes along to top it!  Yesterday's "Beyond Bionics" shattered attendance records:  we had 44 people, and a peak concurrency of 35, all of them talking at once, I think!

We were joined by the World Transhumanist Association/Second Life, and with the able assistance of our panel, kept the discussion going flat out, well past our 3:30 closing time!

Special thanks to Extropia DaSilva for being fascinating, charming, and for the quote of the day:

Extropia DaSilva: Transhumanism. Is it not just a form of religion for people who trust in the word of the Wachowski Brothers more than Holy Scripture?

Thanks also to my dear Esteban Moody, for bbq-ing some intellectual sacred cows, and for an *exhaustive* list of household tools!  :P 

And, my gratitude to Brielle Coronet for sticking to her guns and challenging the room's consensus with grace, smarts and aplomb!

Finally, and most importantly, thanks to Giulio Prisco for being the *perfect* panelist and bringing a crowd of his own!  Check out his blog for his perspective on the joint event, some more photos, and a good chunk of the chatlog!  We'll collaborate again, I'm sure. 


Next week, watch as we shatter this week's record, with "SexTech: Waaay Beyond Poseballs!"




Comments

( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
ext_58863
Oct. 21st, 2007 05:46 pm (UTC)
The number of avatars on the sim was 40 at the moment I checked. That was too much for me. Despite that the discussion was interesting, I lost my grip, I simply couldn't follow. :(
sophrosyne_sl
Oct. 21st, 2007 07:34 pm (UTC)
I know, I felt the same way. I tuned out for a long period (dealing with the owners in the aftermath of the griefer, etc.), until the crowd got back down to about 8-10 active participants.

Honestly, I never expected to draw even 20 people consistently, and each week we've been adding to our audience by 25%, tripling the turnout in a month - and "SexTech" could easily crash the sim.

I'm not sure how to handle that: I'm not interested in a more formal lecture/classroom format - plenty of people do that, and I'm opposed to the "expert talking heads" notion and format on principle.

Cap the audience at 20? Seed panelists into multiple simultaneous sessions of 15 or so? I don't know. I'd love suggestions and ideas!
(Deleted comment)
sophrosyne_sl
Oct. 22nd, 2007 05:33 pm (UTC)
I'd never heard of that - I like it a lot, and it's a great solution to the problem of scale.

Some of last Saturday may have been that it was an exceptionally talky group, and mostly ideologically pre-sorted. I'll see how next week goes (I'm definitely nervous about it!), and then if this past week *wasn't* an anomaly, actively look for a fishbowl-like solution....

Thanks so much for this, love - great idea!
ext_67451
Oct. 22nd, 2007 08:24 am (UTC)
Mixed format?
I agree that separating "experts" and "audience" is often a bad idea, but I think we should find some kind of solution to the problem of everyone talking at the same time, also because this interleaved threads that become difficult to follow in the chatlog. Perhaps like in RL conferences: passing a token to the next speaker, and who has the token has the floor. Easy to implement in software I think.
sophrosyne_sl
Oct. 22nd, 2007 05:29 pm (UTC)
Re: Mixed format?
That's a good idea - I'll look into that...
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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