Saturday (3rd September) was the latest and possibly greatest of the conferences known as Think Visibility. I was once again able to head up a contingent from Epiphany consisting of the one and only Paul Martin (@pg_martin) as well as ThinkVis virgins Scott Malthouse and Jodie McDonnell.
***BREAKING NEWS*** Richard Lawrence (@richlawre) was also there! Sorry Rich
Now I have always had a good time at all the ThinkVis conferences I have attended as can be seen at http://www.beingadad.co.uk/random-rants/good-rants/think-visibility-20-creme-eggs-and-my-birthday-part-2/. So I both had high expectations of ThinkVis 6 and was willing to give something back (under some duress).
OK, first things first. I am not going to talk about the sessions that I attended here. This will most likely come under a more formal post on the Epiphany blog once the 4 of use have had a proper debrief. This post is more to get across the social and fun side of ThinkVis 6. The bits you might not read in other write-ups but definitely go towards what makes ThinkVis great.
So here are my top 10 things from ThinkVis 6!
Saturday mornings can be difficult for many, not least those people who went to the pre-party on Friday night. Breakfast at ThinkVis 6 was designed specifically to counter this with bacon and egg baps and coffee on tap. Om Nom Nom!
2) The Pre-party.
Yes I didn’t get to go but I have heard great things about the pre-party (once it got rolling). Sponsored by the lovely people over at Koozai (more on which comes later), Dom took the Mint hotel to the limits. Lots of drink and INDOOR CRAZY GOLF!!!
3) The Swag Bag.
Over the years ThinkVis swag bags gave come on leaps and bounds with last year featuring a rubber duck. Well this year again Dom went one step further and added a ThinkVis Lego minifigure. Mine looks like Jodie McDonnell which is pretty darn funny.
4) Lunchtime Entertainment.
Last year I seem to recall taking part in some lunchtime madness entitled Play Your SERPs Right. I was robbed. As the scars still haven’t healed I chose to not partake in the ThinkVis 6 doings and the Koozai crew of Anna, Andy and Tara took on the guys from OMD. This years quiz show theme was Family Fortunes and much hilarity ensued peeking with Andy saying the now immortal line..
Are dogs allergic to dog food!
Even with the hindrance of Andy, the Koozai team somehow managed to fend of OMD and Anna plus a box on her head made a valiant effort to smash the crap out of a piñata. Awesome fun!
5) Pete (Not Quite A Ninja) Wailes.
Need I say more!
6) Nichola Stott.
I have seen Nichola speak a couple of times now and bar Avinash and Jim Boykin she is my favourite speaker adding the right amount of comedy, authority and confidence into her subject matter. Her talk also chilled me out a bit for what was to come…
7) Your Time To Shine!
Dom added a new style of session to ThinkVis 6. Your Time To Shine was a chance for people who don’t normally speak on stage to have a crack at it. 6, five-minute talks on anything you like. I kinda had my arm twisted on this one by both Dom and Paul Martin but like I said previously I was up for giving something back. So I made my first venture on to stage.
I was pretty nervous (as was Anna from Koozai who was also making her first venture) prior to going on stage but luckily Ben from Koozai and Pete Wailes were on the ball with lots of calming banter etc. When it came time to start I even managed to end up going up first which as it happened proved a good move as I had all the time in the world…. lol
I’m not going to go on about how I did but I actually really enjoyed myself. Yes I was supposed to talk for 5 minutes but whats 12 minutes between friends. Eventually I was wrestled free of the microphone having funded @shanejones’s Lego addiction and was amazed to see this >
Which leads me to 8.
That should be an 8 but it is apt! ThinkVis really does bring together a large number of intelligent, kind and fun people. They are all up for a chat and are very supportive of all the speakers. I have spoken at previous events to the likes of Joost, Dixon Jones and Pete Young. This ThinkVis I got to speak with the guys and girls from Koozai, the lovely Zoe Piper, Kelvin Newman, Pete Wailes and loads more people. As it happens I didn’t know there was a camera set up and ended up pretty much sat in front of it for the whole after party ;P
9) The After Party.
Robot Wars!!! Really!!! Oh yes!!! 4 man Robot Wars, Rock Band on the stage, a bloody funny domain auction, free drinks, a magician (at least I think he was scripted) and it’s in a darn casino!!! Truly worthy of all these exclamation marks.
10) Dom Hodgson.
Dom is the life and soul of ThinkVis. Not only does he come up with the concepts and runs himself into the ground getting everything spot on, he also puts his neck on the line and hosts each event. I am genuinely honoured to consider Dom a friend.
11) The Koozai Crew
Kudos to the Koozai crew for sponsoring and supporting ThinkVis 6, but beyond this serious kudos for being such nice people. I had a right laugh chatting with Ben, Andy, Anna and Tara throughout the event and look forward to bumping in to them in the future.
And now to the lesson! How to say Koozai.
- Firstly say “Koo” as in Koo ee it’s only me!!! ”Koo”
- Now make the sound of a “Z”. Not zeeee of zed but the sound “Z”
- Put them together and say “Kooz”. “Kooz”
- Now simply add “Eye” and bam!!! KoozEye….. Koozai
Even I can say it now and trust me I really genuinely struggled on Saturday. I wasn’t trying to be a dick but for some reason (probably alchohal) I kept saying random words. Sorry guys, I hope this makes up for it!
I give links freely
Al Carlton (what a bloody legend!)
I stole all images on this post from either @sk8geek, Koozai or Social Enhancer. If this causes any problems please let me know and I will remove them.
Apologies to @koozai_mike for mixing him up with @koozai_andy