18th June, 2011

Interlink in Vancouver

I recently had the pleasure of travelling to far-away Vancouver to speak at the inaugural Interlink conference, hosted by the incredible Shawn Johnston.


I loved Vancouver. It’s a beautiful city spread either side of a natural harbour full of life. Despite several days of rain, I did my best to explore the bars, eateries, and general sights and sounds of the place.


Figure 1: Vancouver skyline from the Seabus. A bus, on the sea.

Somewhat impossible to ignore were the NHL Ice Hockey play-offs, with Vancouver’s Canucks in the Stanley Cup finals after a million years or whatever. During the games, the streets were crazy, and I lost track of how many strangers attempted to high-five me after the first two wins. I’m a pathetic Englishman when it comes to such greetings, so I’ve been practicing ever since. Watch the elbow, they tell me.

Conference day

The whole day was wonderful, but I was especially taken by the excellent talks from Denise Jacobs and (of course) Frank Chimero, who can talk about design like nobody else. By Friday afternoon, as I was about to close the conference day, my head was full of snot, my throat sore, and my brain unable to hold information, so I sort of lost track of the first twenty minutes, and ended up speaking for approximately an hour, which was 25% too long, and left no time for Q&A. Sorry about that!


Figure 2: Speakers on the way to breakfast… in the rain.

Still, the response was good and I was thrilled with the positive feedback. A Dialect of our Own Design is an evolution of some talks I did through 2010, updated to consider where we go next, taking a look at our increasing maturity and responsibility as web professionals.

You can view my presentation on Speakerdeck if you so desire.

The next day, I managed to do my 4-hour workshop despite all my head-cold symptoms amplifying and my voice almost giving out. I’d like to thank all the attendees for their support and understanding, and for making what could have been a terrible afternoon somehow bearable. You lovely people, you.


Figure 3: Preparing for my workshop.

Thank you, Shawn…

Again, huge thanks to Shawn Johnston for putting on a stunning event. It’s hard to believe he’s never even been to a web conference, let alone organised one. The man is a cast-iron legend. Also, it was a pleasure to hang out with so many friends old and new, and explore wonderful Vancouver. Go Canucks! Oh, wait…

Here’s a Vancouver Flickr set if you fancy a trawl through my snaps.

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