Today is the day after and now is the morning after SOTM 2008. My overall view is that this was a better conference than the O’Reilly Where 2.0 conference held in San Francisco earlier this year which I had attended. Where2.0 very quickly turned into a launchpad for new startups and a launchpad for the bigwigs launching new features and products. Great as it was, SOTM was even better.
The only reason (in my mind) for this is Community.
Here’s a community that has created this phenomenon which is just about ready to virally spread around the world. A community which is bubbling with energy and excitement because its growth is making the bigwigs situp and take notice. Not just take notice but then go and launch things like MapMaker, Map2.0, etc etc. Imitation is the best form of flattery.
The main reason I see OSM getting viral adoption and growth in the future is the pragmatism within the community. From the founders down everyone is already (only 2-3 years into its existence) asking what do we do now that we have (or very quickly acquiring) data? What applications can we build with this? What do we need to change to make OSM even better, make it a viable data choice for commercial uses ahead of the likes of TA and Navteq etc etc. Bravo!
On a personal note, today is my first day of adventure expedia. Here’s hoping it starts well!