I savely arrived home from almost one week in Zaragoza where I attended the Innovate!Europe ’06 conference. It was an awesome experience.
To get so many smart people come to one place at a given point of time may be something, that only Chris Shipley (the conference’s executive producer) whith her huge reputation from more than 11 years of organzing the DEMO can do.
And I did not meet a single conference attendee, not confidently stating that he or she intends to come back next year.
The organizers luckily allowed me to skip the staged presentation, since I really did not want to bore the highly sophisticated audience with a slideshow and early prototypes of a concept, while the other innovators mostly had at least nearly finished products.
In spite of that, both potential customers and investors, intersted in helping us pushing this project forward, visited me at our innovator station; I’ll keep you updated on what is coming out of these contacts.
Another amazing opportunity was last Tuesday’s networking-dinner: Not only we had very delightful conversations at our table (or at least half of it, as the other half did not speak any English, and therefore let the someone tell me, I was a ‘nice guy’, though clearly required to learn some Spanish before even thinking of attending next year’s conference…), but I also had not eaten such great mediterranean food for years !
And you know, I’m quite demanding when it comes to finding a place to have really high quality food.
For any details on the conference itself, I highly recommend you reading the conference blog.
Furthermore: Do you know where the progress lives in Europe ? Come to Zaragoza. It’s not just the ZH2O, the Expo 2008, that throws its shadows on all the refurbishing of public buildings etc., but the comparably young population of this old city, with its loads of small businesses, gives it this vibrant and lively image.
You can also get free Wi-fi at literally every corner ! So if you haven’t been there yet: It’s just an affordable two-hour direct flight from Frankfurt/Main, Germany.
I can’t wait to get there again — though I may have to hold back myself until next year’s conference…