Weird seeing my name in NTK still

NTK now

This months Event queue in NTK has this block of text

…Negotiations are afoot to snag one or more of them for another London GEEK DINNER, though in the meantime Ian Forrester is trying out a slightly more upmarket venue for January's soiree with DAVE “CSS Zen Garden” SHEA (7pm, Mon 2006-01-23, The Crown and Anchor, 22 Neal St, London WC2H 9PS, UKP6 for buffet). And for anyone who considers an evening discussing web standards “not quite geeky enough”…

Its still kind of weird although its happened a couple of times now. Cheers Dave for the heads up. I must have missed it because NTK does not do full text RSS still. Yeah I know some of the reasons why, but come on… come on make it happen.

Anyway I wanted to also say before going to bed early tonight (3am) do get your name on geekdinner.co.uk or Eventful. I'm actually wondering if we will break the maximum capacity of 70 people with this geekdinner. I have the option of moving the venue to the polar bear near Leicester Square if we do go over 70 people. Oh and one more thing, if your around in London and not doing much before the geekdinner, be sure to check out Dave Shea's plans to go around the Tate modern with a few geeks. I would go myself, but I have to work till after 5pm, before hot trotting it to the Geekdinner to put up signs and sort out name badges. Yep name badges are back, be afraid…no..be very afraid… *smile*

I've been thinking, I should share some of the so called secrets to the geekdinners and events I've done so far. I'm not one of those people seeking to be a A-class blogger and am more of a sharer than holder

So first things, about a year ago I was going to events which honestly I felt could be done better. So I did. How do I get the guests which I do? Well in my own experience its friends of friends and keeping an eye on guests blogs. See if you see someones in town for a short period, its a good idea to write them a nice email asking if they would be interested in taking part in your event. I always see these emails as the start of a conversation and maybe a way to plan something next time around. Hey and theres nothing wrong with a good conversation with a good person. Oh yeah and its worth pointing out that I'm quite picky with the guests. I'm tending to lean towards people who are geeky but are interesting. Molly was the perfect guest, but Dave could be better still.

How do I sort out the money? Well I tend to have events during the week which means you can get a venue for almost free, but you need to pay for the food. Most places do buffet type food and charge anything between 1 pound and 30 pounds a head. I tend to prefer the lower end of the scale because to be honest, you can get a ok resturant meal in London for 15 pounds per head. So why would you pay so much for a buffet? I also only charge as much as the buffet costs and wait as long as possible before giving a exact figure for people eating. How do I know how many people there will be? Well I usually count how many unique comments the geekdinner blog gets, then take away about 15 people for people who may not turn up. I also check out other Eventful, Upcoming and Delicious to see how many people have added it or suggested they will be going. Then obviously I look around Google, Technorati and Blogdiggers Blog searchs to see if there is buzz for the geekdinner and see if I've missed anyone, A combination of these things usually works for me. This also means the money I get on the door goes straight back on the food and venue. Worst comes to worst I will only loose about a bit of money.

Whats the deal with other geekdinners? Well I dont own geekdinner.co.uk, actually Lee Wilkins does and he still does geekdinners but has taken a break for a while. Hugh Macleod does other ones in London like the large Robert Scoble ones and there maybe others but there not very public and happen on a adhoc base. There are geekdinners outsides of London for example Tom Simcox is planning one for Newcastle or somewhere in the North East of England. And finally there is nothing stopping you from setting up your own and doing a better job that I am doing right now. If that happens, expect to see me there sipping Redbull and Hot Sauce (my new drink of choice).

But I will keep evolving geekdinner as much as I can, talking of which dont forget to check out my two pledges which take Geekdinner in a different direction. Geekdinner nye2006 and Geekcamp

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Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser.