This blog is where we announce new videos & talk about the power of explanation & the change it can create. 

n-Tags and Revolting Conference Attendees

Jason Kottke just posted a funny and interesting entry about interactive name tags (nTags) at the recent Pop!Tech conference.

The nTags are little computers that allow you to zap your personal information to another person's tag with whom you're conversing. Pretty cool, but some people didn't like it...

Many attendees liked them and used them happily, but others revolted. Some people started trading their badges with others. Early on during the conference, Whit Diffie hacked his nTag badge to send a sleep command to any nTag badge in range, effectively deactivating them. As word spread of the hack, people sought him out to sleep their hated badges. Others were pissed that he was turning off their badges without permission; someone asked at the end of the conference if sending a sleep command constituted an attack (When Sleep Attacks!). Following Diffie's lead, a woman hacked her badge to send the sleep command and a disgruntled Pop!Tech goer tried to rip her badge from around her neck (When Liberal Nerds Attack!).

Ahh, the drama. Regardless, I think there is a big opportunity to give conference attendees better tools to network before during and after conferences. After all, they are a community- why not just give them an online space?

I met Deborah Grove of IntroPlus recently, which seems to have a great start on addressing this need.