Grasping Social Patterns

Back in April, I gave a five-minute talk to a barful of Web 2.0 conference attendees in San Francisco. An audience member recorded me, and posted it to YouTube:

The event was Ignite at O’Reilly’s Web 2.0 Expo last month. This was the most recent in a series of slideshow “slams” that Brady Forrest has been putting on all around the country, and the second one held at Jamie Zawinski’s DNA Lounge in San Francisco (the first was last fall).

The format is inspired by pecha kucha. Each speaker is limited to 20 slides and five minutes. The slides advance automatically each 15 seconds. Each speaker is encouraged to tell a roomful of geeks how to do something.

The tight strictures of the format force the speaker to get to the point right away and pack as much information as possible into the allotted time. I’ll be honest: it was a bit intimidating.

The format itself turned out to be exhilarating, bringing out great performances from a number of the speakers, notably Kathy Sierra (how to make your users kick ass), Annalee Newitz (why giant monsters rule), and Lane Becker (the gruesome physical consequences of running a marathon).

I discussed some of the social design patterns (and antipatterns) that I’ve been gathering as curator of the Yahoo! Design Pattern Library. You can hear the whole talk, including facetious arena-rock shout-out at the beginning, synched up with the slides (which are harder to read in the video), by watching this slidecast:

Christian Crumlish
Pattern Detective