Thursday, March 25, 2010


I stayed overnight in Toronto last night as part of the pre-gathering leading up to this year's BookNet Canada Technology Forum 2010. This year's forum is entitled Calculated Risk: Adventures in Book Publishing.

I have attended the BNC Tech Forum for several years now and always find it a fascinating, informative and incredibly useful day of inspiration, ideas and great conversations. This year, I'm also going to be presenting one of the parallel track sessions.

I'll be presenting a talk along with Hugh McGuire of LibriVox and -- two incredibly dynamic online communities of creative collaboration.

Here's the description from the BNC Tech Forum website for the session Hugh and I will be doing.

Trailblazing: Leading The Way to A New Kind of Supply Chain
Hugh McGuire, Book Oven
Mark Lefebvre, Titles Bookstore, McMaster University

What does the next generation of book creation and supply look like? More collaboration? Less waste? Just-in-time delivery? Hugh McGuire of Book Oven and Mark Lefebvre of Titles Bookstore (home of the Espresso Book Machine) present how in their experience new behaviours and technologies are changing the way we create and sell books.
Last night, the folks from BookNet Canada held a dinner in Toronto for forum speakers.

Yet again, I am overwhelmed to be fortunate enough to get to sit in a room with such a dynamic, intelligent and passionate people. Dinner started at 7 PM, with bullets of great conversation and discussion going around the table (and say bullets purposely, because the words came fast like machine-gun fire, riveting and hard to keep up with) -- I only had access to about 1/4 of the conversations going on at our long table -- and even then it was one of those frustrating moments where you wanted to be part of two or more discussions at once, because they were both absolutely compelling.

To put it in simple terms, I felt like Homer Simpson in the "Land of Chocolate" -- so many options, so much to sink one's teeth into it could be completely overwhelming. ("Wow! Chocolate, half price." -- okay, I digress)

I arrived a few minutes after 7 and the next thing I knew it was 9:30 and it had felt like perhaps 10 minutes had passed because the stimulating and engaging conversations were absolutely compelling. We moved on down the street to a bar where even more bookish peeps were hanging out, and where the great conversation continued.

I had planned on trying to get a group shot of everyone last night to use for this week's HNT photo. But of course, I completely forgot (I slipped into Homer mode perhaps?)

So, instead, I'll use the picture that was posted with my profile on the BNC Tech Forum website.

And go back to preparing myself for yet another fun-filled, information-packed day where I count myself lucky to have the opportunity to engage with such a fantastic group of people. I hope I remember to send tweets out (using hashtag #bnc10) about some of the fascinating things I learn/hear today.

Yeah, I know -- it's a picture of me posing with a bunch of books. I've never done that before, now have I?

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