And now it can be told.
Uncharacteristically, being that I am naturally a shy person, I loved summer camp. And I have loved the summer camp-like events that I’ve participated in since. There’s something about taking a diverse melange of people who don’t know each other and throwing them in an isolated oasis for a time, doing stuff together: no matter who they are, and where they’re from, interesting stuff results. Soul-building stuff.
Many of these people never would have met without Zap as a forum. Some, like John Muir and Stephen Regoczei, have lived 4 blocks from each other for 10 years and worked for the same institution and didn’t meet until the conference brought them together.
So now John from Ontario is going to do radio with Dave from Harvard. And Ian and Tessa are turned on to PEI as film location. And Buzz and Stephen are going to work on ActiveWords together. And people from New York and Florida and Germany and Newfoundland and Windsor and Toronto. And Prince Edward Island. All know each other.
When I wrote the what is Zap your PRAM document back in August, I claimed that we didn’t really know what the conference was about. That was a lie. Zap Your PRAM wasn’t about blogs, or web browsers or provincial elections or image search solutions or death or libraries. It was a summer camp for people who, because of blogs and web browsers and provincial elections and image search solutions and death and libraries are part of what Stephen would call “the same tribe.”
When I wrote that we wanted Zap to be a conference for interesting, interested people, this is what I was really getting at. I didn’t mean “interesting” in any sort of universal way (although it appeared I did, for which I received from you’re-an-elitist flames); I meant interesting to each other.
I think it worked.