Fun at FOO camp, Talk
What's FOO camp? Sadly it's not the ultimate Kung-Fu training camp, and gladly it's not where a bunch of folks sit around weaving FOO into friendship bracelets. FOO stands for 'Friends Of O'Reilly'. O'Reilly is the publisher that's responsible for all those ubiquitous animal-covered technology books you see at all the bookstores, and also puts on the wonderful Maker Faire and the TED conference. It's a camp-out 'unconference' they hold on their beautiful grounds up in Sebastapol.
An 'unconference' is a conference where anyone can talk about anything, and you're encouraged to talk about what you do or love, and not so much about your company or heavy marketing-style networking. The talks were world-class, the folks I met there amazing, and overall it was probably the best conference I've been to ever. I left full of big ideas and with some new friends and it was just chock full of awesome.
The Maker Faire folks asked us if we could setup the Artgolf course for FOO camp this year. We were sad to say that the more than 10,000 kids that came through it at this year's Maker Faire rendered it into a state needing some repairs, and that due to our current workload we wouldn't be able to get to it in time. So instead we made something else: DEMOLITION CROQUET!
Philo's very first inkling of 'art sports' that lead to the creation of the whole Artgolf idea was a artists croquet event he did a long time ago. That course ended with a spot where you'd hit a ball up a ramp and in doing so satisfyingly demolish a old thrift-store plate. We thought this the perfect little fun thing to do for FOO, and we whipped up some signs and he whipped up some art, and, well, some silly fun was had.
Another highlight of FOO camp (other than the late night werewolf games) was that I got to meet Ze Frank too, and share in the fact that we're both in the special exclusive two-person club of people who have had a portrait of their face burned into a piece of toast by a robot!