Commanding Chaos for Coworking, Open Source and Creative Communities

April 2009 Posts

TED Video: Serious Play

Tue, 04/28/2009 - 09:17 -- rprice

If we're "Creatives", one of the things that helps define us as such is that we have not lost our ability to engage in play. This video has more on the subject:

Stuart Brown: Why play is vital -- no matter your age

Stuart Brown's research shows play is not just joyful and energizing -- it's deeply involved with human development and intelligence. Through the National Institute for Play, he's working to better understand its significance.

Dr. Stuart Brown came to research play through research on murderers -- unlikely as that seems -- after he found a stunning common thread in killers' stories: lack of play in childhood. Since then, he's interviewed thousands of people to catalog their relationships with play, noting a strong correlation between success and playful activity.

One thing you see and hear often is about the "creative types" who work at ad agencies is that they know how to have fun at work. Take MindComet, for example - the building is built with all these crooked lines and rounded corners, to encourage the fun and playful culture they have cultivated - they even have Tequila Fridays, Cakeplow parties, and dress-up days.

Not all creatives work in ad agencies, but when you put them all in one room like that, they can often come up with some great and innovative stuff. Take this video, for example:

Lip Dub - Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger from amandalynferri on Vimeo.

'nuff said.

Have you incorporated play in your work and home life? I want some of those "wearable meetings".

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The Least Pretentious Demo I've Seen in Ages

Sun, 04/26/2009 - 10:18 -- rprice

Everybody can take a hint from Ryland Haggis and Lisa Bettany over at redpilot media in vancouver, b.c. (that's in Canada, yo). It's simply designed, the edits are not too fast, and they have a very clear message to communicate.

Redpilot Media from Redpilot Media on Vimeo.
Most Demo Reels or Trailers you see for companies try to jam as many different styles, media, bright colors, fast motion and buzzwords as they possibly can. What Ryland and Lisa have done here is notable, because, unlike all the other guys, they're not trying too hard.

Don't agree? Concur? Tell me why.

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Your Tech Doesn't Matter, n00b - How to Kick Ass at Your Job

Sat, 04/25/2009 - 06:15 -- rprice

My BarCamp Presentation actually hit the home page of SlideShare the other day. I gave this at the very end of the day, so if you missed it, check it out in 35 McCluhan-inspired text-happy slides.

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Training: Zero To Drupal, Orlando - May 15, 2009

Fri, 04/24/2009 - 07:40 -- rprice

My company, DrupalEasy, is holding our second monthly training course in Orlando. Our March event gave us some great feedback, and we're excited to bring some Drupal love to Orlando.

Friday, May 15, 2009 9:00am - 5:00pm

Training Course(s): Zero To Drupal

Leu Gardens
1920 North Forest Avenue
Orlando, FL, 32803

See map: Google Maps

Join us for a full day beginner workshop at scenic Leu Gardens in Orlando to learn all you need to know about Drupal as an economical content management platform. If you manage, need, develop or design sites that require information posting and collection including blogs, forums, videos, photos, or other data, sign up now at our hometown rate of $175. Seats are limited.

Drupal offers time and cost savings without sacrificing amazing functionality because it allows for quick development turn-around, easy internal updates and virtually no limit to the number of users. Zero to Drupal includes an information-rich, no-frills session perfect for designers, website developers/administrators, and even marketing professionals looking into Drupal to keep quality while cutting costs.

We’ll provide coffee and carbs to start the venture into the who, what, why, and hows of Drupal, including how you can access the plethora of free resources available through this open-source software and its devoted developer community. You’ll learn about the building blocks, installation, updates and security, modules and themes, as well as get some hands on editing exercises to get you comfortable.

The workshop runs from 9 to 5, with a break midday so you can grab a quick bite at one of several nearby lunch spots, or take in the scenic grounds of Leu Gardens. Registration is limited, so sign up now.

Price: $175.00
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Coming of Age as a Community

Mon, 04/20/2009 - 10:50 -- rprice

4 years ago, I had just been away from "home" for a year, having just graduated with my Digital Media degree, ready to go out and cause some riots -- but I had no employable skills, no professional network, and very little job experience. Moving away from my comfort zone was difficult, and I decided to move back within 50 miles of where I grew up.

I had been having a stellar year in the frozen midwest, and Detroit's creative community was very welcoming and bustling. I loved Ann Arbor and was making good connections, but I didn't see the benefits of that locality over... any other.

So I came back, and, after a fashion, kicked a few tires on the local community, deemed it non-existent, and went about trying to find the likeminded, self-starting folks we would need to build Orlando into something unbelievably awesome.

Getting started was slow, but I didn't give up, and I soon realized there were dozens of independent, autonomous, "scenes", but very little to join them outside of a few key Connectors and the local Weekly paper.

I decided to emulate one of the most successful and engaging events I had seen - but wait, I had nothing, knew nobody, and had no reputation. No success to measure against. How does one go about causing an explosion with sparks alone?

One stick of dynamite at a time. You're going to drop a few on the way to the mine shaft (did I mention you have to dig the mineshaft too, and you can't be in two places at once, and you have to teach yourself everything, and try to maintain your regular work, family and social lives the entire time?

We've now had our third (fourth) BarCamp in Orlando, and it's clear that our tech/creative scene has matured. No hand-holding, no rule-setting, just a well-oiled machine rolling down the tracks we've laid over the last 3 years. It's a great feeling. It doesn't happen without lots of hard work and effort, but when we get rolling, it feels pretty darn good.

What's the next step? If you ask me, it will be connecting our autonomous scene with all the others - locally, state-wide, and internationally. Some inroads have been made, but more formal connections can be built, and those can only be solidified with collaboration (in my mind).

We've all got wonderful communities (where we belong, and people listen to us). Let's bring them in, and tell them how much we admire them, because they're good at what they do. Then let's create something together - a film, an event, a manifesto, or let's share our knowledge. We're comfortable doing this among our own kind. It's time to leave the nest.

We have a happy hour coming up tonight. Let's make some plans.

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BarCamp people can Learn from Dead Chickens

Mon, 04/13/2009 - 07:34 -- rprice

While I was at DrupalCon DC I went to a session about how to give a presentation. Emma Jane Hogbin had a slide where she was talking about different presentation styles, and she brought up "Selena talks dead chickens". With some creative googling, I discovered that the presentation was from Ignite Portland, and that someone had videotaped it.

This is why you have to love events like Pecha Kucha Night and Ignite - people will present on any subject, as long as it fits the time limit. At the same time, they are almost always very personal and gripping.

We have a BarCamp coming up in Orlando this weekend, and I'm really looking forward to what everyone comes up with this year. While I will really enjoy yet another OAuth session, I'm wondering who will be the "dead chickens" of #barcamporlando.

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