I’m in Sydney at the moment at a conference for users of our work’s Content Management System. It’s not what I expected it to be. I was thinking there’d be lots of young nerdy guys drooling over code and wearing pocket protectors. I was wrong. It’s actually mostly pretty old people – and a fairly even gender split. Sometime during the last two years I became our office’s official geek – I don’t know how it happened. But a lot of the stuff the people at this conference are getting excited about is beyond me. I sat at a dinner table with the guy who is pretty much everyone’s hero for some work he did with AJAX (the coding/script thing that pretty much powers Facebook) and the Content Management Platform – he presented earlier today. People kept coming up to him wanting to buy his work. He told me he’ll probably put it up for free, silly him. Dave Hughes MC’d the conference dinner. He was very funny. He apparently gets paid over $10k to do that sort of gig. Clearly I’m in the wrong career.
One of my favourite things about this conference has been the number of terrible tech glitches in presentations. Powerpoint appears to be the bane of even the technologically elite – although most of the presenters have been using Macs – and it’s beautiful presentation software. I decided the other day that I’d like a Mac. Especially one of the new ones with the funky touchpad. If my choice of luxury materialism comes down to a toss up between a Mac, a coffee grinder, an XBox 360 or a new TV – I’ll be in a real bind. At the moment I am probably leaning towards this option . Robyn remains unconvinced. It’s still cheaper than a piano though.
On Tuesday night I lugged Sheila (my tank of a coffee machine) to a lady’s Wine and Cheese night event that our church held. I made quite a few coffees using some El Salvadorian beans I roasted on Monday. I’ve been meaning to write a little bit about coffee on this blog – and probably will later. Right now there’s a bit of a fight going on on the street outside my hotel – I haven’t adjusted to daylight savings time very well so it still feels quite early to me but most people appear to be asleep.
I’m staying in a hotel called “The Dive Hotel” in Coogee. It’s very nice. A fairly large room in what appears to be a converted terrace house right on the beach in what I think is Sydney’s nicest suburb. Breakfast is a communal affair – and the in room brochure/manual thing warns guests (particularly children) not to pat the hotel’s aging dog – one of those little furry balls that only just passes as a dog – because in its old age it no longer tolerates children. Pretty funny stuff which adds to the homely appeal of the place.