I was glad to be a part of BarCamp Miami 2009 which also included WordCamp, a track dedicated to WordPress. Hundreds of geeks descended on Coconut Grove at the Anokha Restaurant and the Mayfair Hotel.
I admit I was a little skeptical about how this was going to work out. It was my first unconference and I am not generally of the opinion that things “just happen”. You need leadership and fortunately we had some leadership with the visionaries who brought BarCamp to Miami, namely Alex De Carvalho (@alexdc) and the rest of the BarCamp team. There were many volunteers who helped make the event a success. Thank you.
So, the way this gig started was with a big slab of paper on a wall with time slots. People rushed to put up post it notes with the presentations they had prepared. This was the part that had me nervous. I had ominous visions of an American Idol tryout for geeks.
It turns out many of the presentations turned out to be quite good.Â Here were my favorites.
- David Bisset (@dimensionmedia)Â introduced us to BuddyPress.Â I’m very excited about BP and am thinking of using it for a community site for solo entrepreneurs at Solo Startup.
- Jim Turner from One By One Media (@Genuine) spoke on Blogging for a Living and did a live web broadcast of Social Mediasphere on Blog Talk Radio once he got the wifi working.
- John Carcutt (@johncarcutt) gave an information-packed session on WordPress SEO that confirmed what I have learned and taught me lots more about SEO for WordPress.
- Finally, Jay Berkowitz (@JayBerkowitz) and Alex Harris (@alexdesigns) gave a super session on tips for using social media increase traffic to your site.
There were many other sessions that I did not attend but I heard were very good. I hope to see some of the info online after today and maybe I’ll link up to some at that point.
The best part about today was that I was able to meet several people whom I had gotten to know “virtually”.Â It’s always good to have some face-to-face to strengthen a relationship.