Last weekend I went to Electromagnetic Field 2014 in Bletchley, UK. EMF is a hackercamp - there were over 1000 makers and hackers camping on a field. You could get electricity to your tent, and there was fast Internet connection.
It was a pretty cool event. I met some nice people, attended some cool talks, and generally had a good time. The Arduino Duo -compatible event badge, TiLDA MKe, was cool too, even though the radio network never really worked.
There were several really good talks. Here are my favorites:
Walt Disney World: This was supposed to be the future by Dan W, was a talk about the history of Epcot, which is part of Disney World in Florida. Turns out it was Walt Disney’s attempt at utopian city planning. A fascinating story.
Where Games Break by game designer Hannah Nicklin was a personal talk about how and where various games (understood very broadly) break. It was gripping and poetic talk, more like a performance than a lecture. Unfortunately I can’t really summarize it in words. Text of the talk here.
Surreal Numbers And Mathematical Games by Tom Hall was a talk about how all of the certain kind of games are actually games of Nim. Even though it was fast-paced, Tom ran out of time. It was so fast-paced that I’m not sure if anyone in the audience was able to really follow the talk, unless they had previous knowledge of combinatorial game theory. Slides here.
I usually don’t get much out of talks in this kind of events, because I’m superficially familiar with a lot of stuff and the speakers tend to not go very deep. Probably one of the reasons that these talks stood out was that I was new to all of the topics and couldn’t properly follow the talks.
All in all, it was a great weekend and I will certainly consider coming back for EMF 2016.