Here's some cool news I just *have* to share with you: yesterday I booked a flight and a hotel in Boston which means that I'll be going to Siggraph together with Ton and a third Blenderhead who has yet to reveal himself. Oh, happy day! (Read on to see why this is good news for you, too)
In the previous years, there was a lot of excitement in the community about the exhibition, but *during* Siggraph there was very little information on what was actually going on. Having your own booth and making sure everything runs smoothly is exhausting, so people never took the time to report regularly from the exhibition floor. I found that because of this the interest quickly faded once the show really started. BlenderNation is going to change that: our goal is to make the entire community part of what's going on in the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.
But that's not all: if all goes well and if we can afford the bandwidth, we will go one step beyond regular blogging and create a daily videoblog with exhibition impressions, interviews and looks behind the scenes. It'll be the next best thing to actually being there! (And as a bonus you'll get to hear our funny Dutch accent ;-).
For those who are interested, my travel itinerary is as follows:
Saturday July 29th - arrive in Boston
Sunday July 30th - Attend the Blender Birds of a Feather meetings
Monday July 31st - Try to get rid of jetlag, help build up Open Source Pavillion
Tuesday August 1st - Siggraph Exhition Begins
Friday August 4th - Spend a day in Boston
Saturday August 5th - fly back to Amsterdam
We'll probably hang out in a bar or a restaurant in the area of the Convention Center after the show so if you live in the Boston area and you'd like to meet fellow Blenderheads, then come on over! (Ton mentioned that he has heaps of free exhibition tickets available; keep an eye on this site for more info).
By the way, if you're interested sponsoring the video reports and have your name (or your own commercial) show up in a prominent place, you know where to contact us. Our estimate is that each video will be seen by more than 10,000 Blender users and other 3D users worldwide. If you have another offer that could lead to more copious dinners, extravagant parties and free beer for the team, we're all ears ;-)