Saturday, February 04, 2006

BrainJams04May2006: New Orleans!!!

On Wednesday I got some fantastic news via an email newsletter. JazzFest is on this year for the last weekend of April (4/28-30) and the first weekend of May (5/5-7). My first thought was "let's go down there and organize a BrainJams between the two weekends". After some back and forth with Kristie concerning our hectic travel schedule for the first half of the year, I took the plunge and have made all our travel arrangements. Now all we need to do is find a venue.

This is a fantastic opportunity for us, and incredibly good news for one of our favorite cities in the world. Given my feelings about how everyone screwed up on every level of government down there after Katrina, this is a good chance to move beyond the couch potato rhetoric and contribute to the solution instead of the volume of complaints. Of course, it also a great chance to have an incredible time listening to some great music. I feel very blessed that I was able to see NOLA before the Hurricane, going to Jazzfest last year for the first time.

We would very much like to have a discussion about the best way to approach this very special BrainJams. It would be great to perhaps revive the discussion around Jeff Jarvis' Recovery2 and perhaps Sam Perry's work on Reliefopedia. Then again, we could just focus on how people can use technology to rebuild their society after a disaster. Of course the great thing about holding BrainJams is that we don't really need to figure that all out until everyone gets in the room together, but I do think we need to set our intentions around an organizing principle first and foremost.

Regardless, we need local volunteers to help coordinate logistics, we need a space for 120 people (if interest is high enough, perhaps double that) and we would like to very much involve the local government, chamber of commerce, non-profits, musicians and technologists. If anyone knows someone from BamaWorks, we would really like to get them involved too.

If you have any interest in being there for this incredible event, I recommend booking now since our hotel is already sold out for those dates and airfares are still relatively inexpensive.


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