Yesterday I attended the Meshwest conference in Edmonton. Meshwest is a uniquely Canadian tech conference, birthed out of the Mesh conference in Toronto.
I think it’s a great conference, with a great concept. It’s biggest challenge is that most folks in Edmonton didn’t know about it, or understand what it was about, or who it was for.
What the hell is Mesh?
Mike McDerment, one of the organizers, compared Mesh to the TED talks: find the most interesting Canadians involved in technology and put them on stage. However, instead of delivering a keynote speech, the speakers are made accessible to the audience, who can start asking questions almost immediately. A moderator kicks things off with interview questions, but the best “Mesh moments” occur when the audience interacts with the speaker directly (or asks questions via Twitter). While a panel isn’t as dramatic as a keynote talk, the interaction between the host, the speaker and the audience is much more valuable.