When I heard the news that the rapture would take place two Saturdays ago, my first thought was … wait … how is that possible, since World Domination still has two weeks to go?
We need more time before the planet implodes!
Yesterday and today, the first attendees have been arriving in town for the inaugural World Domination Summit. Tomorrow we’ll be joined by 500 people from a dozen countries, meeting at the Portland Art Museum and various other locations around town.
When I announced the summit nine months ago, I really had no idea how to produce such an event. I approached it the same way I did publishing: ask a lot of questions, watch what others did, and announce the plan before I knew how it would unfold.
Since then, I’ve been fortunate to work with a great, all-volunteer team here in Portland, who has been coordinating hundreds of details—gift bags, breakout sessions, speakers, door prizes, negotiating with catering racketeers, hammocks, afterparty, transportation, and so on. (This is a very abbreviated list.)
It’s the first time for all of us to do such a thing. We’re nervous but excited, and it all begins tomorrow night.
Attendees! Here’s what you need to know
Like any AONC event, the best thing about WDS is all of the people who attend. As the host, I want to put on a good show and welcome people to our city, but I also know that most people enjoy the “unofficial” aspects of meetups at least as much as the official ones. Don’t be afraid to meet someone this weekend; they’re all fun people doing interesting things.
We have volunteers to greet you at the airport welcome center starting tomorrow morning at 10am, but if you miss them, no problem—just take the MAX train ($2.35) to your hotel or hostel downtown. Registration begins at 6:30pm tomorrow night, followed by an informal gathering. The main event begins at 9am Saturday morning, with doors opening at 8:30am.
(Everyone attending WDS should know this information already, but I’m posting it here just in case.)
Non-Attendees! Sorry you aren’t here, but we’ll think of you
I know that a number of people are coming to Portland for the weekend despite not having tickets to WDS. I’m sorry that it sold out so quickly (more than five months in advance), and I’m sorry to miss you if it didn’t work out. There are no last-minute tickets and we can’t accommodate anyone else at the summit itself, but you’re welcome to join many of our group on an “UnTour” (i.e., a general meetup) on Saturday night down by the waterfront. Many attendees are also arranging independent activities and gatherings around the weekend as well, and I hope you have a good visit to our fair city.
Numerous people have asked about live streaming the event, but we won’t be doing that this time. The main benefit of the weekend is having everyone all together in one place, and we couldn’t do a good job thinking about both the local audience and the faraway audience.
We will, however, be posting real-time images (hundreds of them) to my Flickr stream starting Friday night and continuing through the weekend. You can also keep up with the group through the Twitter hashtag #WDS. Our media team will be documenting the event for an upcoming compilation, and a few independent media outlets are also on site and will be doing… something (I really don’t know what).
If you don’t care about the World Domination Summit, here’s the takeaway: I was worried about inviting 500 people to come to town, but I’m glad I did it. If you wait until you feel confident about a big venture (or adventure), you may never do it. By some miracle, this is actually coming together, and I’m glad we decided to go for it nine months ago.
Whatever your own venture / adventure is, don’t hold back! Don’t wait. It usually works out in the end.
Question: whether coming to Portland or not, what are your plans for the weekend?