Commanding Chaos for Coworking, Open Source and Creative Communities

Think and Drink is Tomorrow Night! 9/16/09

Thu, 10/15/2009 - 12:29 -- rprice

Just a friendly reminder that tomorrow night, Friday, Sept 16th, at 7PM, we will be opening the doors of the historic Cameo Theatre to an event to have everyone get together, share ideas, talk about community building, and hear from a few people who have experienced success in their own communities.

Please bring $5 cash per person - each paid admission also gets a free drink coupon for a drink at the bar (non-alcoholic options are also available). If you don't want to pay cash, we can hook you up on the internet, but the EventBrite service slaps us with an extra $1 service charge.

We will be keeping the venue open as late as everyone wants to stay, so call the babysitter, put out the cat, and tell the wife (or husband) not to wait up for you! The conversation can continue until the wee hours of the morning! The Cameo will keep the bar open as long as we need it.

Who will be there?

Gwendolyn Anello is a co-owner of Anello Consulting out of Merritt Island. She consults several organizations in the areas of communications, market development, community and public affairs, and fundraising.

Chris Blanc is the Marketing Director for the Enzian Theatre and the Florida Film Festival. As if that wasn't enough, he's involved in several other local communities, and had a hand in creating the Dandelion Cafe.

Darren McDaniel is the creator of a feature film (The Essence of Irwin), the founder of a local internet startup (Petentials), former programming director at the Downtown Media Arts Center, and has done PhD-level research Sociology at Vanderbilt.

Julie Norris
is the owner of Dandelion CommuniTEA Cafe and the host of Front Porch Radio on WPRK 91.5FM every Wednesday. She's also a new mommy! Congrats!

John Rife
was a media missionary in S. Pacific / Asia, a founding member of Interactive Expeditions (, is an independent documentary filmmaker, a video blogger and is currently pursuing an MFA in Digital Media at UCF.

Lance Turner is the founder of the Ourlando movement and the owner of AEonBlue in Winter Park. You'll see Lance at tons of local events snapping pictures or signing up small businesses to bring the local color.

The Cameo Theatre
1013 E Colonial Dr (corner of Mills & Colonial)
Orlando, FL, 32803
Map Link:

About Florida Creatives

Ryan Price and John Rife hatched the idea for Florida Creatives Happy Hours in Ryan's kitchen 3 years ago, and the event is now a fixture in the Orlando community. FLCreatives has expanded to Jacksonville, Brevard County and South Florida. The first New Media Think and Drink was held in January 2008 at Redlight Redlight in Winter Park. John and Ryan are planning to hold Think and Drink several times a year. Get more info at or follow @flcreatives on Twitter.

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Media + Communitty -or- FLCreatives Discussion Series

Thu, 10/01/2009 - 07:43 -- rprice

In preparing to plan for a local event in October, namely Bringing Arts and Technology Together (BATT), I went through the process to reserve a space and get a few people involved with the organizational parts.

Long story short, we didn't have enough time to pull off BATT. Time to take baby steps. At the same time, we still have a venue reserved, so it's time to pull other ideas from my back pocket.

In the last 3 years, Florida Creatives has had an important role to play in helping the community grow, but we can take it farther. Our network (and network of networks) is capable of reaching all kinds of people around so many subjects.

I started a wiki page on the FLCreatives site to outline and suggest a format and possible topics for FLCreatives discussions. My main concern right now is the discussion we will hold on October 16th in the evening. Here's my first draft:

The Role of Media in a Community

A collected panel of community leaders with a successful track record will be given the stage and a chance to share their thoughts and stories using media to communicate with:

* Their community members
* Traditional media
* Other organizations
* Their volunteers and employees

New forms of media seem to appear every day, and what used to work in a print, TV and radio world may not fly in the world of social networking and YouTube. Some more established community leaders will have had to adapt, and those with newer missions will have had to make it up as they go along. We can hear from both sides in a panel like this.

EDIT: New Media Think and Drink Event RSVP

We have already confirmed 2 panelists:

  • EDIT: New discussion leaders!
  • John Rife
  • Darren McDaniel
  • Julie Norris, Dandelion CommuniTEA
  • Chris Blanc, Enzian/FL Film Festival
  • Lance Turner, OurLando
  • Gwendolyn Anello, PR & Marketing Consultant

Why do this event?

BarCamps and large events are great, but they only happen once a year in a given city - it would be hard to organize them too often. Happy Hours and Likemind are fun, but we try to keep the agenda out of those events. Ignite is great as a showcase of local talent, but there is no real theme to the event. The idea here is to pick one subject and pick it apart from several view points.

I always like following up a great discussion with some brainstorming, time to make plans and get things done, so my ideal would be to follow a great discussion with a "think tank" the following day - this is what the unconference format is great for - have an empty schedule and fill it with all of the things in your head after you get energized and inspired, then have a room full of people who are willing to talk about anything.

The discussion series should be followed by a BarCamp-like event to let people workshop on the discussion's topic from the previous evening. It's great to have time to "sleep on it", go and reflect, then get back together and get stuff done.

We've got the venue for Saturday the 17th as well, and they'll be happy to leave the chairs and equipment set up for us to hold a 'Camp style event on day 2 if we want.

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Photowalking, Anyone?

Tue, 09/15/2009 - 07:59 -- rprice

The last photowalk (at least that I know of) was back on April 10th. Anyone up for another? Perhaps through College Park? Perhaps October 1st? October 6th? Just asking...

EDIT: I went ahead and picked a time and place:

Tuesday October 6, 2009 at 5:30pm
Harmoni Artisan Meal Market
2305 Edgewater Dr # H
College Park, Florida 32804
Get Directions

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(some) Drupal Theming: Slides

Thu, 07/16/2009 - 18:04 -- rprice

For a DrupalEasy workshop we taught today for NEFLIN, I put together some slides about learning good webpage design, which is mostly geared towards theming Drupal. All of the links in here are clickable, and I highly recommend you check them out.

(pass around a shortened URL to this slideshare with

I spent years making static pages and hand-coding stuff before I came to Drupal, and I feel as though I was able to reach the brains of some librarians today with a few of these links. It was good fun when I was showing off the article about Sprites. One guy said "...really small, fly around sprinkling magic dust". Indeed.

Also, a quick reminder that we have a DrupalEasy CCK and Views Workshop coming up on July 23rd at Leu Gardens in Orlando. Use the coupon code "FLORIDA" to get $25 off registration.

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When was the last time you favorited a tweet?

Mon, 06/29/2009 - 06:05 -- rprice

A few days ago I was listening to @davewiner and @jayrosen_nyu on their Rebooting the News podcast, and dave was talking about his 40tweets app.

40twits takes a look at the stats for the shortened URLs you post to twitter and decides which ones are most popular, then displays them in order. Dave's current top link as about Wikipedia and Michael Jackson.

I don't know if it counts the link being retweeted, but I'm going to guess yes.

This got me thinking about one of the original features of twitter - the favorite. I remember using favorites a lot before I started following 1000+ people. Now I just sort of let the wave go by. Also, not every desktop tool has an easy/visible favorite button.

I put out a call to my twitter group: "when was the last time you favorited a tweet?" and got a big response. (displayed in reverse order)

Thanks @gilcreque, @modulist, @karschp, @thandelike, @ericschechter, @domhay, @staticnrg, @tiburon, @doreeno, @incanus77, and @mrscrumley for replying. Of everyone who participated, it seems like Eric Schechter and myself are the only two people who don't use it very often, or at all.

Looks like I'm not the only person thinking about the utility of Twitter Favorites. This post by Christopher Lynn is about the same subject.

TweetDeck has a view to let you look at your favorites, but I didn't see a place to add a favorite very easily - it's hiding under "other actions", which you see when you hover over the user's icon. Tweetie (desktop) requires a right-click, or you can press the "F" key, then a little star appears next to the tweet.

I currently pipe my blog feed to twitter, and I don't hear a lot of complaints about that. I'm thinking about piping my Delicious bookmarks to twitter as well. Do any of you folks pipe your bookmarks in? Would you like to see more useful links on twitter?

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How to Kick Ass at Your Job - Slides from Ignite Orlando #2

Wed, 06/24/2009 - 18:29 -- rprice

Before you get too far into your creative endeavor, stop and think about why you got into this in the first place. Creating a Mission statement can tell you why, but should not tell you how, when or how much, but a Vision statement can. Arnold, Cyrano and Kermit can help too.

Presented at IgniteOrlando just moments ago.

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BlogOrlando >>> WordCampOrlando, more events = more specialization = more awesome

Fri, 06/12/2009 - 05:47 -- rprice

The spring has kept me busy, so I haven't been able to read every blog post on my RSS reader. However, the recent announcements around WordCampOrlando made me wonder what Josh had to say about it.

BlogOrlando 2009 from Josh Hallet's blog:

After a great deal of consideration I have decided not to host a big, public BlogOrlando this year.
It is the complete end? No. I may still hold a small private event this year, or may think about hosting an event in 2010. We'll see.

2 years ago, I talked about doing PodCampOrlando, but the farthest we got was a happy hour and photowalk (lately I've been using the site to teach people how to do stuff in Drupal). Honestly, the social media wave tends to hit Orlando a year or two after the West Coast, so while a small and intimate PodCamp would have been fun, it was hard to get the podcasters, videobloggers, and especially the news media to sign on for something like that.

BlogOrlando was serving many of those folks very well, but now there may be some room in the Orlando calendar to explode what was BlogOrlando into a WordCamp, PodCamp, PR-unconference, SocialMediaClub, etc.

There are a lot more podcasts being produced in Central Florida than there were in 2006, and the ones that are still around from those days aren't going anywhere.

Would you come to a PodCamp? What presentation would you give, or what discussion would you like to have? Do you understand what a PodCamp is?

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Subscribe to Rebooting the News

Sat, 06/06/2009 - 13:22 -- rprice

I've been following Dave Winer's writing for some time, and he often has some great things to share with us. Lately Dave and Jay Rosen, who teaches Entrepreneurial Journalism at NYU, have started publishing a series of discussions about creating a "rebooted system of news". After 10 episodes, Dave created a dedicated website and feed for the show. You have to subscribe:

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Drupal Community Helpdesk at CoLab Orlando, First Fridays

Thu, 06/04/2009 - 07:20 -- rprice

12:00 - 1:30 PM, June 5th, July 3rd, August 7th, September 4th at CoLab Orlando

[caption id="attachment_760" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="It might look something like this"]It might look something like this[/caption]

A few months ago, I attended my first DrupalCon, and what an explosion of open source community awesomeness it was. As Mike and I are running a fledging Drupal shop, I was subconsciously looking for a shop I could use as a signpost, a group whose values and practices were in line with where I would like to be in a few years. I met the fine guys and gal from Advantage Labs in Minneapolis/St Paul, and was introduced to some of the awesome stuff they do.

One really great thing they offer in addition to web hosting, consulting and training is what they call Lab Hours. Twice a week, anyone experiencing a hang-up in their site, or just folks who are interested in helping, come by their offices for some roundtable support time. A goal is set to accomplish a certain task at the end of 2 hours, everyone pairs off and work commences.

There is no "expert" in the room doing all of the work. It's roundtable style, and that's how it should be.

This is pretty much a direct physical manifestation of the kind of help you get in #drupal-support in IRC. I have helped out there a bunch, and then having heard about this concept, I decided Orlando could use some community helpdesk time as well.

Starting with the first Friday of the month, I'll start hosting Lab Hours of my own here in Orlando. If you've attended DrupalCamp Florida or a Drupal Meetup, if you've attended one of our DrupalEasy training days or webinars, or if you're just curious about learning how to use this open source content management system, you're welcome to come by and share.

If nobody shows up, I'm going to open up IRC and help people in other parts of the world. I also intend to show everyone where they can go and get more help outside of helpdesk time.

CoLab is Orlando's first and only coworking space, on the 6th floor of the Angebuilt building, 37 N. Orange Ave. It's right at the corner of Wall St and Orange Ave, above Subway. It's the perfect place to host an event of this kind.

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