We like to set the tone for the rest of the event in the first few minutes. There is usually something on the schedule called keynote that isn’t a keynote but it sounds good and makes people show up. The key to setting the tone is to really surprise people so they open their mind for the 2 days of brain massage that is ahead of them. Surprise means to do something that can’t easily imagined from the baseline of having attended the previous years which drives us onto an escalation path in terms of production value and organizational complexity. This is the part that I enjoy about running a conference: Every year I can start fresh without any legacy code and worrying about backward compatibility and do something that is as awesome as I can be this year.
An intriguing insight into the experience-craft behind this year’s JSConf.eu from Malte Ubl.