I attended FITC Toronto this year, I should have been blogging about it as I went but lack of a notebook and very no Wi-Fi made that impossible. So I am going to cover my top two sessions for each day in addition to a more in-depth write up for some of the keynotes.
Time to play…
Held at the Hilton Hotel in downtown Toronto, the theme this year was play, they had a few tables setup for arts and crafts, where yours truly make a button with a frog on it. When you registered as part of the deal you got an old school style lunch box, complete with a snack to tide you over as you went through the sessions. They also announced FITC San Francisco that will take place August 17-19th further expanding on the work they do each year. Here are two of the sessions I attended from day 1:
The Importance of Whiskey While Working (and other workflow tips, too!) with Jamie Kosoy of Big Spaceship
He didn`t talk about whiskey which makes me sad but he did talk about their process. Everyone is an expert, from the CEO to an intern, everyone has something to contribute. They don’t start small, they dream big. Jamie said you have to build for the people not for yourself. The next as the saying goes is to work smarter, not harder. Frameworks are great but starting from zero can help developers to understand more. He said build it ugly; don’t make it pretty because you won’t change it if it looks too nice. Finally he said strive for excellence, not perfection because that can only lead to disappointment because no matter how great something, there is always more to be done. A great talk that had a lot of good tips about what one of the best digital agencies does to keep it on top of its game.
Listen, Listen and Listen by Dre Lebre the Creative Director of Rethink TO
Dre focused his talk on the growing proliferation of geo location technology. This tech uses the GPS receivers in your phone to know where you are through software on your mobile device. He said that location was about context, that during his time at SXSW it was a networked city. By using services like Foursquare and Gowalla, he was able to find the best parties, know where people were hanging out and that using such services changed people’s behaviour. One example is by knowing where you are and where you want to go a service could tell you what grocery stores are along your route. The challenge is to balance the usefulness with privacy. He didn’t get into specific technologies or development but I found his example of SXSW a harbinger of what is to come as mobile, location and services come together.