Zach Beauvais

Open… and Mobile?

Written by Zach Beauvais

Feb 19, 2010

Originally appeared on Nodalities Blog:

I know what you’re thinking: “He’s going to say Data!”

Well, I might do at some point, but I was going to say “Days”. Last month, Talis flung open its doors to 30 or so folk who were interested in SPARQL, the Semantic Web and Linked … er, Data. The idea was to host an informal event for folks learn about much of what we’ve been talking about for the past few years. We planned some talks on what it means to join up your data, what this Platform is about, and a detailed introduction to SPARQL. With the launch of and many of the stories covered over in the Magazine, it seemed possible that people were starting to get interested in this whole Linked Data scene.

So, we sent out some invites and tweeted a bit, and soon had to cap the registration numbers. We filled up spaces in the January day not long after New Year, and the February day not long after the January one. March is quickly filling up too (hint). I have to admit, I wasn’t expecting this many people to express an interest so soon. Not only did people sign up, but travelled to Birmingham through adverse weather to come and take part at both ‘Days—and we’ve had a lot of fun.

One thing that seemed to be a good idea was to ask for feedback before the event. It sounds wrong, but the point of an Open Day is to cover things that YOU’re interested in learning or exploring. So, when people registered, they were asked for their expectations and what they’d like to take away with them from such an event—aside from a T-shirt and SPARQL mug, obviously. It made it much easier to work out what we should cover, and I hope it meant that we were able to talk about the things most relevant to the people who came along.

I’d like to do it again, but slightly differently. Instead of hosting an Open Day here at Talis HQ, what if we came to you? Would you be interested in attending a Talis Platform Roadshow? What would you want us to cover? More importantly, where would you like us to go?

Comments below, or email me or tweet me.

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