I think I’m going to sign up to go to this conference on Accelerating Change at Stanford in early November. It’s only $350 if I sign up before September 30, and $300 if I take advantage of the discount listed here. Looks like it could be pretty interesting – some potentially interesting speakers, from Doug Engelbart to David Brin to Will Wright to Dan Gillmor. It looks like an opportunity for good conversations.
The Accelerating Change folks are interesting. I ran into them for the first time at Burning Man in 2000, where they were hosting daily discussions about various future-oriented topics. Had some thoughtful conversations with them, often playing devil’s advocate to their technology-oriented singularitarian extropian point of view. Didn’t think much more of it, until I started getting email a while later from them, as they started to put together an institute to study the impact of accelerating change on society. And then I started going to these future salons and found out that Mark Finnern, the organizer, started them in response to meeting the Accelerating Change folks. And now they’ve put together this conference, for the second year running, with relatively low conference fees, and a pretty interesting lineup of speakers. Even more amazing is the fact that most of the speakers have apparently agreed to waive their speaking fee in order to keep costs low. Neat stuff. I feel like I should support them. It’s really cool that they started off with a dream, and they’re putting it into action, and making it happen, as Mark Finnern reflects at the end of this post. It’s inspiring, really.
Anyway, you should come to the conference if you’re interested in such things. Heck, several of the people reading this probably qualify as potential presenters – I think the organizers may still be looking for speakers, although the schedule looks pretty packed at this point. And, no, I’m not getting any kickback for this invite, although I am thinking about volunteering at the conference itself. Yeah.