WordCamp Orange County 2014: Awesome Moments

WordCamp Orange County 2014: Awesome Moments

WordCamp Orange County 2014: Awesome Moments

Recently, I attended WordCamp Orange County 2014, not to be confused with WordCamp Orange County 2013. Here are a few of my favorite moments.

The Women

Mary Baum’s class on responsive design was Sunday’s funniest seminar. She kept us entertained while educating us on design challenges. And apparently, she loves golf!

Chris Lema

Chris Lema helped make the conference a community. He followed his own advice of being helpful. Getting the Most from Your Blog was definitely not about any get-rich quick schemes. Chris Lema set the tone for much of the conference.

Live Tweeting

You may have read my blog post about Live Tweeting at Conferences. Live tweeting is a fab way to connect with new friends. In fact, two of my besties (Bridget Willard and Peter Woolvett) were both people I met through Twitter. Some people we met couldn’t believe you could actually meet people from Twitter. Who knew? And here’s a partial hashtag report, in case you think live tweeting doesn’t make a difference in amplifying an event.

Wordcamp 2014 STATS_2 copy

Offsite Meetups

Offsite Meetups at WCOC 2014

Offsite Meetups at WCOC 2014

Another favorite moment was going to Café Vitaly with friends for extra-strong doses of coffee or the best sorbet and gelato around. Strolling on the beach, walking back from the Durty Nelly’s after party, and seeing some unusual trees (and giant cockroaches) along the way were also good ways to “play hooky.”

Jason Rosenbaum’s Business Coaching Workshop on Contracts and Proposals

Jason Rosenbaum’s talk was surprisingly useful. As a result of hearing his talk, I’ll be changing how I word some of my proposals. For instance, no more 100% guarantees—especially if clients want to “do it themselves.” Good, solid advice.

Slide Presentations and Videos at the Speed of Light

As we watched on Twitter, the presentations started to appear online. Many presenters uploaded their talks even before the weekend was over. How awesome is that?

Food Trucks

Gourmet food trucks, with items like Coconut Risotto (A Bite Truck), Mexican food, and bacon (of course!). Worth the wait. Also the gourmet mini-cupcakes, Skittles, and gluten-free brownies.

Artwork at Cafe Vitaly

Artwork at Cafe Vitaly

Style Revisions

Derived straight from the creatives at Minecraft, WordCamp’s new direction feels somewhere between Super Mario and Flappy Birds.

The style is everywhere, from the giant mugs and t-shirts to notebooks, stickers, and buttons!

Chance Meetings

Meeting people like Justin @student_otc at one of the first talks, connecting online with @DownTownRob who met me and my friends at Durty Nelly’s. Meeting attendees and speakers while waiting in line.

Generosity and Friendliness at WordCamp Orange County

Generosity and Friendliness at WordCamp Orange County

Generosity and Friendliness

Without the volunteers and sponsors, WordCamp Orange County would not have been such a success.

Finding Work/Life Balance As a Remote Worker

Jon Brown’s  course outlined ways to stay sane while working remotely. And he was even more fun when he went off-script and discussed all the tools he uses (such as electronic devices to bring while backpacking!).

Did I Leave Anything Out?

What were your favorite moments?


Live Tweeting at Conferences


Live Tweeting at Conferences

Live Tweeting at Conferences

You may have been to a conference lately and wondered about people who live tweet. This post is how to make your experience easier. With just a little bit of planning, your live tweeting can add to your conference experience. For other tips on conferences, read Entrepreneur’s The Art of Hacking a Conferences.

Why Live Tweet?

Aaron Hockley Recommends This "Friend Maker"

Aaron Hockley Recommends This “Friend Maker”

Live tweeting lets you connect to other Twitter users, and amplifies what’s happening at the conference or live event. Live tweeting lets the speakers know that you’re listening to them, since you can interact with them. Often, a conference such as WordCamp San Francisco (#WCSF) will have a live Twitter feed. The #SFGiants interact with their audience through live tweeting. You may have read my post about the San Francisco Giants and how they can improve your game.

Before the Event

  • Search for the Hashtag. If your conference has a hashtag, search for it. For instance, I’ll be attending WordCamp Orange County (#WCOC), and have been following the hashtag. You may find out about extra parties or discover more about your favorite speakers. For instance, there is a pre-event golf game for #WCOC.
  • Follow speakers whose talks you’d like to attend.
  • Follow fellow attendees.
  • Create a list in Twitter for the event. When you add someone to a list, they’re alerted on Twitter. Once people are on a list, you can more easily hear what they’re saying and cut down the noise of Twitter.
  • Create a Pinterest place board for bonus points! My pal, Bridget Willard, created this Orange County WordCamp board that’s both a place board and a group board (so I can pin to it, too!).
  • Make a list with the participants, their handles, and the hashtag on your smart phone.
  • Print a list using Post-it notes. Yep. I found it on Pinterest.

Stuff to Bring

Extra chargers, fully charged phones, an extra extension cord (aka Friend Maker), and your already-made lists.

Follow the Conference Hashtag

Follow the Conference Hashtag

During the Event

  • Use the hashtag at the end of every tweet. You could use tweetchat.com for this (adds the hashtag automagically!). People who are watching remotely use the hashtag as well as those at the conference.
  • Follow the conference hashtag (you can create a column in Tweetdeck or HootSuite to make this easier).
  • Listen for Interesting Quotes. Add value to the conversation by cherry picking the best quotes.
  • Tweet your own questions or comments.
  • Use abbreviations. Here are some common ones: OH (Overhead), h/t (hat tip), MT (modified tweet).
  • Meet New Friends. Since you’ve already been following people (and hopefully engaging with them), they will probably be more open to meeting. So don’t be shy!

Do You Enjoy Live Tweeting?

What would you add to my lists? Please leave me a comment. Thanks!

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