Quite frankly, I haven't yet done very much this year. In the middle of last December I was overtaken by an acute case of severe stress (I posted a rambling entry at that time). Fortunately my planning called for a holiday at that point in time, but what I hadn't expected is that, even after three weeks of complete rest and no email, I still wouldn't be able to restart working.
As a result, I didn't do even 20 % of what I planned doing during January and February. Meanwhile I'm beyond apologising. Such things happen.
I may ignore the world, but the world still expects things of me. More precisely, it expects me to be present at no less than seven conferences between now and July. I hope that visiting these conferences will be what I need to get my act together again, especially since I have to speak at only three of them.
See my schedule for an (as yet un-microformatted) overview.
In slightly less than two weeks (March 4th, to be exact) I'll find myself at Schiphol again boarding an intercontinental flight to the US. Initially the plan was to just fulfill my religious duties by making the annual pilgrimage to SxSW.
Meanwhile I've booked a side trip to Las Vegas, where I'll attend Microsoft's MIX 2008 event to meet the IE team and continue the versioning switch discussion. Jeremy will be there, too, hoping to convince the IE team of changing the default. I have a faint hope of convincing him that the default is correct, but we'll see what happens.
All that means that I'll arrive in Austin only on March 8th, and I'll leave for home on March 12th. It's a pity I can't be in that great city longer, but I think that right now discussing the versioning switch with the IE team is more important.
By the way, I will not speak at SxSW. It seems that my panel proposal has fallen out of the database, because when back in January I politely enquired whether they'd selected it or not, it turned out that nobody knew. After five agonizing seconds of thought I decided I didn't mind not speaking there: not having to prepare a presentation sounded like an excellent idea.
The next three conferences will take place at home, which makes for a nice change of pace. The first one will be The Next Web 2008 in Amsterdam, (3 and 4 April) for which I've been offered a free ticket.
It's always strange to find out that, right in my very own town, there are people I don't know at all putting together an excellent conference (take a look at the speakers' list). I'm quite glad to be able to be there.
Next on my list will be the pfcongrez on 12 April. One of the organisers is Koen Willems, who has played an important role in the creation of the Web Guidelines and who has created the very first Dutch site to comply wholly with these guidelines (which, among other things, netted him a GAWDS membership). Koen asked me to speak almost a year ago, and I'm happy to oblige him.
Then I'll have a conference break for more than a month, but on 27 May I'll have to bike for an agonising 10 minutes to speak at the Kings of Code conference, organised by the same people as The Next Web. Right now I think I'm going to talk about the separation of structure, presentation, and behaviour, but my plans may change. In return, the organisation offered me the free ticket to The Next Web I mentioned above. Excellent deal.
The very next day I'll again go to Schiphol, but now only to take a short hop to London to perform that other annual pilgrimage to @media Europe 2008. I won't speak there, but I hope to once more meet several good friends, especially those who won't be able to make it to Austin.
@media is on Thursday and Friday, and the next Monday I'll go to Schiphol once more; this time not for a conference but for a nice, relaxing two weeks' holiday with some friends and their children on the beautiful island of Zakynthos in western Greece, where we have long-standing contacts with a few nice locals.
There's one only disadvantage of this holiday. I've been invited to speak at the Voices that Matter Web Design conference in Nashville. I loved the conference last October in San Francisco, and I definitely want to repeat the experience, but VTM quite insensitively planned this conference smack bang in the middle of my holiday. Pity, but next time I'll be there once again, never fear.
All in all the next four months will be busy ones, but I don't mind. I like visiting conferences, meeting old friends and making new ones. I might even manage to get some actual work done in between trips.
I’m speaking at the following conferences:
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