The name “BarCamp” is a reference to the events origin, with reference to the hacker term, foobar: BarCamp arose as a spin-off of Foo Camp, an annual attendant-driven conference hosted by Tim O’Reilly.
The ideas were absconded by and riffed upon by techies in the real estate field and Real Estate Bar Camp was born.
The most interesting thing about it is that it’s user/attendant created: the program is developed by the attendees at the event, using big whiteboards upon which a schedule is hastily put together, that can be rewritten or overwritten by attendees to optimize the days events. The goal is to reach out to new people who will increase the common intelligence about new technologies, and to create opportunities for cross-fertilization between people and new ideas.
How cool is that?
Seattle’s event was held at the lovely Zillow offices and a big shout-out and thank you goes to the management who allowed us to use their vacant offices for the event.
I enjoyed seminars on blogging, creating dynamic websites, Twitter and other social networking sites, something from Greg Swann called Scenius, a great presentation by Mike Simondson from Altos Research, and another about Active Rain from Rich Jacobson. I met the fellow behind WalkScore.com, which is a great way to rate the walkability of a neighborhood.
I got to listen to statistician Stan Humphries discuss Zillow’s data. I had a nice chat with Rhonda Porter and I guess Ardell was there, but I missed her somehow. I enjoyed seeing David Gibbons again and hearing about his roundabout journey to Zillow. I also got to meet a lot of the brains behind Zillow, Spencer Rascoff, Rich Barton and Lloyd Frink, and had a beer with my friend Whitney Tyner at the after-party beer blast that Zillow hosted in their 46th floor office suites.