One of the conferences we're supporting this year is Defrag. The topics that Defrag explores are very close to our hearts - OpenSocial, Attention, Next-Level Discovery, The Implicit Web, and more. One of this year's Defrag sessions that caught my attention is entitled: Fixing Foundational Information Channels -- Email, Calendars, RSS, etc.
On the Defrag blog, my eyes could cope with the stark white text on pitch black background just long enough to read this description:
"...this session starts with the premise that something is broken in our foundations. Email imagines every message as a letter (a discrete object vs. a thread or networked send). Calendars are silo'd islands of non-interoperability that hearken back to days of paper and the rolodex. And RSS, new as it is, is still delivering us "object-oriented" feeds, and not contextually-driven usefulness."
Defrag has snagged some interesting folks that "you don't normally hear from": Ilya from AideRSS, Yori from Timebridge, Deva from ClearContext, and Pete from Mailana. The moderator will be Jeff Nolan.
This sounds like a fascinating session. I still struggle with email overload, even despite my love of Gmail. Calendars are a mix of paper and web for me, which is an indication that I'm not fully satisfied with existing web calendars. And the point about RSS delivering us "object-oriented" feeds is a very good one - and an issue that we at ReadWriteWeb are intensely aware of and wanting to solve on our own blog.
We certainly don't have the answers, but the panel members are well informed with this issue of "foundational information channels". Perhaps our readers can suggest, in the comments, things for the panel to discuss.
Defrag is being held November 3-4 in Denver, Colorado. You can register for Defrag here. Entering the code "rww1" will get RWW readers $100 off of the early bird price.