OPEN IxD turned out to be a terrific event, despite our skepticism at calling it a “festival.” The night before the event, we all came together as a class for one final night of work. We assembled tables and placed power strips and iMacs according to our classmate (and system administrator) Jeff’s detailed plans. It was perfectly executed. A bunch of us created an assembly line to tack Clint’s 3D glasses on every chair in the auditorium.
The day of the festival was full of nervous excitement. We were all amazed when people we had never met showed up to the event. And there were just as many folks watching our LiveStream and following along on twitter.
My presentation was midday and I spent most of the morning in a hyper-anxious state. I was excited for the day but knew that I would soon be nervous, too. When I got up on stage all my nerves went away with my first couple deep breaths. I pumped some enthusiasm into my talk, and I was finished seven and a half minutes later!
The best part of getting up and sharing my ideas was the connection I made afterward. It was a great reflective activity to share the thoughts that have been floating around my brain for the past nine months with a new set of listeners. I discovered a few people I knew already who had been thinking in the same space. We shared a moment of excited knowing after the talk.
The rest of the day was a blur: eating, drinking, and sharing the last day with all my classmates together. I will remember the day because of the spaces around the festival. Like so many things we create as interaction designers, the talks themselves were a catalyst for a larger conversation that enabled us to connect with each other and understand the magnitude of our accomplishments over the last two years.