Sunday, July 01, 2007

 

The Taxonomy of Conferences

With many bloggers returning from the Burton Group Catalyst conference while others who haven't had the opportunity to talk with them points out a disconnect between conference sponsor and attendee...



There is no single place on the Internet where one can find a listing of all technology conferences. As one who not only speaks at conferences but also attends, a directory of sorts would be wonderful. What if we had a taxonomy where one could search for security conferences related to software development and not just infrastructure or where we can figure out which conferences are magazine sponsored vs publisher sponsored vs analyst sponsored vs software vendor sponsored and so on.

Would conferences improve their ability to get top talent as speakers if there were a single place where all call for speakers were posted? Right now the model is primarily dependent upon vendors who sponsor conferences by purchasing booths to also nominate their CTO to present thinly veiled sales presentations in disguise. Many of the software CTOs aren't smart enough to figure out that they may be better served by encouraging their customers to speak.

For some interesting web 2.0 site such as technorati or even the likes of Infoworld partnering with Tim O'Reilly, this could expose additional revenue opportunities in the form of advertising. Of course, they shouldn't make the mistake of charging each conference a fee just to get listed but could resort to charging for banner ads.

What if conference attendees could also provide ratings on all the conferences they have attended along with reviews, Sort of like an Amazon book review? I have always wondered whether this idea had merit. Of course, if this becomes a meme then multiple people will create duplicate sites or morph into something I didn't imagine.

I would love for others to comment on this idea...




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