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Friday I attendend a brand new belgium conference for webdesigners and webdevelopers called : The Way Internet Is Supposed To Be.

The goal was an affordable one day conference for like-minded web creatives, and boy, did they succeed!
I've been to my fair share of conferences but I must say this was about the best one: the topics where spot on and the speakers were top notch.

It started a bit slow though. The first session by Serge Jespers was OK, but misplaced: an audience of mostly professional webbuilders don't want to sit through a generic talk about Adobe Flash and AIR. I though it somewhat a missed opportunity that Serge didn't dive deep into a place for flash/flex in an open architecture sementic web, but oh well ... it was early and people still had to wake up :-)

Things started to get going with excellent talks about "Transient Semantics and Microformats" by Brian Suda and "Cost Effective Web Development" by Drew McLellan. I didn't fully agree with Drew, but still it was an interesting reminder to keep your common sense in everything you do.

After a HUGE Twunch, the star of the day took the stage: Aral Balkan about "Remember the Magic"
In one word: He was BRILLIANT. Allthough his talk was rehearsed up to the small details and he clearly is a very professional speaker who knows how to play an audience, it absolutely worked: It was the best session i've ever seen.
Honestly, if you ever have the chance to attend one of his talks, don't hesitate, you won't regret it. (apart from that, at the afterparty it turned out he's also an extremely nice guy and fun to hang out with ... man, what are the odds? :-) )

Elliot Jay Stocks had a bit of an ungrateful task to speak after the magical sparks of Aral, but his talk about the imporantce of beauty in absolutely everything was more than OK.
"Experiments in data portability" by Glenn Jones was a bit dry but right into my alley and the awesome Chris Messina did a nice wrap-up of the "The open, social web"

It really was a nice mix between webdesign and webdevelopment and the scale of the event was small enough so that at the very nice afterevent (yeah, free beer by Netlog !) you actually had a chance to talk to all of the speakers.
Apart from the great speakers, it was really nice to meet so many old and new contacts, the after event with DJ boskabout really was the cherry on the pie

I don't think I was the only one who liked it: I've seldomly read such raving comments on twitter about a conference!

All in all Filip Bunkens and Simon Schoeters did a GREAT job organising the event, I think absolutely everybody had a great day and absolutely everybody also is hoping they can pull a version 2 out of their hats sometime in the future.


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