Some TechCrunch50 after thoughts. First the trip and event for me was pretty much a wash, actually it was pretty miserable. I was thrown a curveball the day before the event started and it quickly derailed the week for me. Lets just say as you peel back some of the many layers of this industry, you occasionally find its unpleasentries as well. The stress and the fear for example.

Conference Thoughts:
Overall it was a good show. While some of the startups were snoozers the quality of judges and other speakers was pretty amazing. I don’t think there has ever been a line up like this, even at an O’Reilly event. The demo pit had a nice selection companies and was never overcrowded. The large open area with tables was a really nice setup. Normally something like this is on the outskirts of an event, here it was right smack in the middle. There were some technical glitches but that’s pretty standard for any conference. Having done technical work for even larger conferences in the past, I can tell ya its impossible for those things to all go smoothly. Most importantly I got to shake the hands of several great folks I’ve talked to or followed online. Robert Scoble turned me down for an interview.

The Night Life:
Normally my favorite part of any event. They had official parties each night at various locations. Most of them were horrible really, over crowded and without any place to sit down and relax. Of course they each had VIP sections which had some of the only seating in the venue. Having this seems to go against the spirt of the conference. Frankly its just too Hollywood for me and I live in Hollywood. I understand Demi probably didnt wan’t some jackass like me spilling a drink on her, but its classic and unnessasry showboating at an event like this. I did miss the Seesmic party on the final night which I heard was actually the best one.

Finally most the video I took was at these night events, so naturally most of you are far too drunk to ever publish. So total loss there.

The Aggregator:
I created the TechCrunch50 aggregator a few days before the show. Mike blogged about it here and the site was a nice resource to follow the show. I actually saw it on a few screens from the session hall which is a great feeling. Here are some stats for those curious:

  • Recieved over 8000 unique visitors and 20,000 pageviews
  • A link from a 2am post on TechCrunch sent about 4500 visitors to the site
  • The site collected almost 4000 items from social activity on Twitter, Flickr, Blogs and more.
  • In total data was pulled in from 14 RSS feeds
  • Noted a few instances of “tag spam” where tc50 was used to promote unrelated videos and images
The Winner:
Of course this is not a total shock, and honestly not a terrible choice for a winner. “Twitter with a business model” is like candy to these guys. They must have been foam-whaling at the mouth just looking at this thing. Really Yammer is not a bad idea, in fact its something Twitter should have developed long ago. There was another company in the Demo Pit called Edmodo, they are Twitter for teachers and students. In a snack size txt messaging world, this type of service could easily be marketed out to many niches like this. 
I actually left San Francisco with a few conflictions, I dont know how better to say it than we work in a very unique industry. Sometimes we over social and hyper connect too much of our lives, thats actually a talk for another post so I wont start. When all hope is lost, you find yourself in strange places. Streets like Sand Hill road for example. Just seeing the sign helped me remember that anything is possible here.
Be sure to stay tuned.

0 responses to “TechCrunched”

  1. Wow, what a brilliant post, Sean. It’s honest, and not many people have the guts to do that in our industry. Congrats on the success of your project too.

    I have to say I agree with the Hollywood thing. When you live in Hollywood and attend a ton of that kind of stuff, you find the novelty wears. 🙂

  2. Sean,

    It was great meeting you at Techcrunch 50, and I can’t thank you enough for plugging Edmodo on your blog, that was very kind of you. It is so true, the best thing about these events are usually the parties and the people.