2002-01-10 21:03:47 UTC
OK, I asked for further feedback and now I've got some. Quite a lot
actually. With a certain amount of interpretation on my part (e.g. all
cases of "I'll bring along some other people" interpreted as "I'll bring
along one other person"), I believe that we have something like this:
Potential attendees volunteering: 21
Potential attendees volunteered by others: 7
Offers to provide or be speaker(s): 7
Offer to help organise speakers: 1
Offers to help organise: 5
Offers of venue: 4
Offer of sponsorship (i.e. money): 1
Offer of exhibition network equipment: 1
There have been relatively few statements of preference as to
With UniForum NZ: 2
Hawke's Bay: 1
Outside Auckland and Wellington: 1
Interpreting the comments of two University of Waikato staff as votes
for Hamilton would not clarify that picture any.
I'm impressed. All of that in three days.
We do appear to have enough interest to justify proceeding to planning
a specific event. In doing that we face a number of inter-related
1/ Do we wish to restrict this to one day, or are we looking for a
residential conference? I think this is the most important of the
decisions. It has implications for cost, obviously, but also for where
we do this and what sort of organisational structure is needed. A
residential conference should probably be outside (though within reach
of) Auckland or Wellington to keep costs down and to reduce the
temptation to go back to work. Conversely, that can be expected to make
it harder for some people to attend. I'm assuming that we do want a
national event rather than local meetings over drinks, but if that's not
the case, now's the time to say so. I'm also assuming that multicasting
is an add-on to a physical event, not a substitute for one.
2/ Are we happy to have a vendor provide a venue? There has been at
least one quite feasible, as well as generous, offer from a vendor.
Whether this is even an issue depends on the answer to the previous
3/ How often are we planning to do this? Should we be thinking big on
the basis that this is a once-a-year thing, or are we trying to keep the
scale down so that it will be repeatable more often? This is closely
related to cost, in money and time to organise. See also question 1.
4/ How much emphasis do we want to place on construction of a
laboratory/exhibition network as opposed to paper sessions? More
hands-on fiddling means the option of having attendees have stuff
explained to them as they do it, but requires a longer event.
"The opinions expressed in this programme are bloody good ones." - F.
I wish us to be very conservative in what we expect from the team of
people we put together to organise this. I believe that if we choose a
residential event we should piggyback it into UniForum NZ's event and
seek to have them do a fair amount of the work for us. Conversely, if we
choose a one-day event we should seek to cooperate with a host
organisation - whether an education institution or a company - while
ensuring that a NZNOG committee (yes, sorry, it has come to that)
retains control over the programme. In either case a certain amount of
exposure for vendors is to be expected.
As to frequency, I'm inclined to go for as large an event as we think
we can manage, and worry about the next one after we've learned about
running one. Others may think differently.
I believe that the composition of the committee/team/chain gang will
vary depending on exactly what we're trying to achieve. So I'd like to
see some discussion of these questions, and others that seem relevant
_to potential attendees_ before we try to work out who's going to be
asked to take the next steps. I'd hope for some clearer idea of where
we're going within the next few days.
- Donald Neal
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