January 22, 2010

CHIFOO Events: Tell us what you think!

As we mentioned recently, many of the articles on the CHIFOO web site are now open for comments. As of today, that also includes the articles about our Programs and other Events. So, we’d like to hear what you think.

In past years, a common feature of CHIFOO programs was the request for someone in the audience to act as a journalist for the evening, and write down their take on the presentation. It allowed us to hear (or, rather, read) different viewpoints, and also provided an unbiased view of the proceedings for the presenters and organizers (so that we would know if our efforts were hitting the mark). It also provided a valuable record of the evening as it actually happened (rather than how we planned for it to happen), helping to add color to the program description and the presenter’s slides, and to improve the quality of our web site archives as a resource for the CHIFOO community—and the world.

We’d like to continue this tradition. With the Comments section of our Events pages now open, we ask that you log in and share your thoughts about the CHIFOO programs you attend this year. There are lots of ways to do this. You can write down your thoughts at the meeting (or immediately after) and then type them into the Comments area for that event a day or two later. If you have a laptop with you at an event, you can log in to and live-blog your comments as the evening progresses. And if you see an exciting program coming up, you can even make comments (i.e., “... I saw her speak last year and she was awesome! ...” or ask questions (i.e., “... is he planning to talk about the work he did while he was at Google? I hope so ...”) about it before the event takes place. And, since time is limited at our CHIFOO meetings, we hope you will use the Comments section to continue the discussions begun during the programs.

Go get started! Why not begin with Scott Berkun’s event? (I’m particularly interested, since I couldn’t make it to the program that night!)


Gary Smith


Gary Smith's profile photo

February 08, 2010
2:32 pm

Posted Feb 4th to the CHIFOO LinkedIn group:

I attended my first CHIFOO meeting last night. What a great evening!

I’d never been to the Deschutes Brewery before, so that’s where the evening started. I guess twenty or so folks showed for the CHIFOOd portion of the night. The Obsidian Stout was excellent as was the happy hour menu.

Moving across the street, I was delighted to see the room quite full when we arrived. Lots of lively conversations taking place. I signed-up with Cindy for a whole year’s worth and chatted with Jackie for a while before she introduced James.

Leo opened the formal portion of the evening with some basic introductions and an invitation to purchase additional raffle tickets for the door prize. The room was pretty full - I’d guess 60+ anyway (I’m sure there is an official count someplace - along with the official photographic record).

James admitted to being the luckiest girl in the world and figured that luck would hold - allowing her to abandon her planned presentation in favor of one put together over the last couple of days. Her firm: Small Society is one of a handful of iPhone app agencies that appear to be creating iPhone apps that are actually useful (as opposed to the 150,000 apps that are simply interesting or amusing). As a result, Small Society (and James) are pretty jazzed about the recently announced iPad. Her presentation focused on being a thought-leader and taking advantage of opportunities in a dynamic technological environment. It was punctuated by interesting personal anecdotes and references to crazy YouTube vids of unusual iPhone adventures.

I’m planning on going back next month.

Maybe I’ll see you there?



jscherer's profile photo

February 25, 2010
5:12 pm

Thank for the great comments, Gary.  Definitely looking forward to connecting again at the next event!

Gary Smith


Gary Smith's profile photo

April 22, 2010
4:58 pm

April 7th’s Meeting
5 PM rolled around and as I entered the nearly empty McFadden’s it was clear that I was on my own. I noted that there was a Guiness happy hour special so I watched in anticipation as that creamy head appeared above the dark brown goodness as the bartender filled my glass. Fellene soon showed up and we quickly corralled Leo and Bill who wandered in shortly thereafter.

While it seemed that it took a while for the service to come up to speed at McFadden’s all in all, I enjoyed the change from Deschuttes. On across the street to UO…

With maybe 18 or 20 at the CHIFOOd event, I’m guessing there were at least 50 in the room at UO. I must have liked the chairs more at UO because for whatever reason, I felt more comfortable there.

Bill gave a great presentation - touching on a lot of design ideas and observations. His career includes stints with both Yahoo! and NetFlix (which he just recently left to start a new adventure with Meebo ).

I noted a particularly poignant exchange between Bill and Ann Marcus about extending the metaphor of the lens concept by further applying the notion of f-stops and their affect on depth of field. It just goes to show that in a room full of professions, even the speaker is likely going to be enriched!

It was also a great night for door prizes! I’d guess that close to $200 worth of technical books were given away to lucky ticket holders (unfortunately none to me) including several copies of Bill’s “Designing Web Interfaces” (link to Bill’s book on Amazon ).

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