Thinking Digital


Herb Kim talking to the BBC’s Ralph Rivera on stage at Thinking Digital 2012

I’ve spent the past few days on Tyneside, attending the 2012 edition of the Thinking Digital conference (TDC) at The Sage Gateshead.

TDC is a marvellously eclectic collection of talks and presentations, loosely themed around aspects of digital culture, and expertly curated by TDC organiser Herb Kim.

This year’s offerings ranged from Pam Warhurst’s inspirational story of Incredible Edible Todmorden, to futurologist Magnus Lindkvist sharing some of the secrets of his trade. Along the way, we were treated to a brilliant performance from Jessica Latshaw and her ukelele, a surprisingly hilarious talk from molecular epidemiologist Jennifer Gardy on tracking the spread of infectious diseases, and a view from Simon Cross of what it is like to work at Facebook.

This is the fifth Thinking Digital, and the third that I have attended personally, and I love it. So much so that I spend vacation days in order to attend, and pay for the ticket and accommodation out of my own pocket. I am rewarded by getting to meet a great many interesting and accomplished people, and by hearing at first hand about some of the cool and sometimes amazing things that are going on around the UK and the world.  It serves to remind me what it is that I love about technology and digital culture.

The next Thinking Digital will be taking place on 21st-23rd May 2013, and I plan to be there. In the mean time, here are my sketch(y) notes, and some pictures that I took at this year’s conference.  You can also look on the website for videos - if this year’s sessions aren’t yet available then you can amuse yourself with talks from 2011, 2010 or 2009.