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Experience Sharing/DamianFinol

Wikimania 2007 Taipei :: a Globe in Accord

Brief summary of my participation at WM06

My name is Damian and I'm from Venezuela, in South America. I attended WM06 in Boston and had one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

At first I was a little scared; I was in a foreign country and I literally didn't know a single person. Being alone in the middle of Boston/Cambridge was a little weird, but in a fun way. The place was great and the people were nice.

I arrived at Berkley (I got there one day earlier) and the very first person I met was delphine (She was having a smoke in the stairs and fighting with someone over the cell phone... <3 notafish) I went upstairs and met Sj and mind, along with Erica from Berkley, they had a really warm welcome and since I was tired they showed me where I should go.

I arrived at the dorm, I saw Zuirdj upstairs and he was laughing and told me that my room was in the first floor, I went there and fell asleep.

When I woke up it was still daylight and I went back to Berkley to see if I could help someone or something, and there I met dannyisme (pink bunnies), Austin (hey pal) and phoebe (brassratgirl <3) and we had a nice chat about how I got there etc.

I left for MIT with some people, I know mind, Sj and someone else was with us I just don't remember much at the moment, at MIT Jimbo, Brad, and the whole hacking day team was there at OLPC (/wave), OH YEA GerardM was with us, sorry I forgot about you buddy.

Anyways, the other day the whole thing started, I couldn't believe I was sitting there, being there, with so many people from all around the world, my conference mate Zuirdj and I strolled around campus and picked the lectures that we wanted to check.

I seem to have forgotten that I went with Oscar, Danny, Zuirdj on a tour around Cambridge/Harvard somewhere between MIT and WM06, we had the greatest burgers in the world and Pink lemonade, although if you ask Danny it tastes the same as regular lemonade (It does, just don't tell him).

Things you SHOULD know:

  • Don't be afraid to meet people. I didn't know a single person and left Wm06 with a lot of friends
  • Share. A lot of people didn't even know where Venezuela (Where I come from) is, nor my culture
  • Ask for information. I wanted to know everything I could know from the friends I made from Israel, India, Chile, Europe, etc.
  • Relax. Nobody is judging you
  • Participate. I had a small chat on a lightning talk round, people like to listen to other people, specially if you are from another culture.
  • Always leave your info. I left a lot of contact cards, and to this date I still chat and send emails with all of them.
  • HAVE FUN. Have a drink with friends, go on a tour around, laugh with others. Wikimania is an international conference of Wikimedians (and supporters); the whole point is to share, have fun and get to know everybody in the community.

I might add some more info here later when I remember more :).

Oh and grammar nazis go away (or fix my mistakes--this is, after all, a WIKI)