London geekdinner with dave shea last night was fantastic

Dave Shea and Me at the Geekdinner

Ok this feels kind of weird talking about my own successes but honestly last nights geekdinner with dave shea was only one word. Yep, Fantastic! I could not have got a better more friendly crowd of geeks in a bar. Thank you to everyone who came along and made it a great success. I spoke to so many people and I can't remember everyones name. But it does not matter because Flickr will do the work for me. This women had the clever idea to get everyone to put up there pictures using the tag . You can also find pictures using londongeekdinner and geekdinner. If you're a flickr type you can also add your photos to the london geekdinner with shea group pool which I have setup.

Flickr tags go offline?

Ian has got some great pictures from the night and a pretty full transcript of the Question and Answers session with Dave Shea. I'm pretty amazed how fast he was able to put this up and that he got all the audience discussion too. Kudos to you Ian. I hope you don't mind that I stole your picture from the website but I did change the licence to Copyright (all rights reserved) and did give you attribution for such a great picture.

There were a couple of complaints but as Sheila and Jen said, Geeks may have the trait of being perfectionists. So the first thing was the venue. I forgot to say the geekdinner was actually upstairs in the crown and anchor, so thats my own fault. But although the venue was is a whole different class from the Hogs head, the space available was about the same. Sheila commented that my spacial awareness was pretty bad, which would be kind of consistent with what Sarah says too. So as you can guess we quickly ran out of room. I only honestly assumed about 50 people would turn up which is still an increase of about 20% from the last one I did with the simply amazing Molly. I counted with the help of the stickers which I ran out of really quickly (sorry to those who turned up late) exactly 68 people. And I noticed some people turned up really late, Dave Green included. So in total we may have had about 75 people but at one point we had 68 in a venue which should hold a maximum of 60. The bar staff did at one point ask me if I was expecting even more people? I have to say I lied. Because of the huge amount of people, my estimate for food to per head was off and I only got food by nicking it off other peoples plates. Someone told me there were sandwiches, spring rolls, etc. But I didn't see any of it. All I got was Chips and some nice sweet chilli sauce.

To be fair to everyone I have to explain what happened. I look at the signups on geekdinner.co.uk, eventful, dave sheas blog and upcoming. Then work out a rough number of people who are coming and take off about 10-12 people for last minute drop outs. I usually give the kitchen the numbers as late as possible, in this case last week Wednesday. And as luck would have it, a load of people signed up after Thursday night at the girlgeekdinner. Other things which people commented during the night. The one bar person when there was easily enough demand for two, to be fair this changed about 8pm but it was certainly easier to get a drink downstairs and bring it back up. The sound level was loud simply because there were so many people in a small venue, I think Jen Dixon said I was loosing my voice half way through the night. Was the food as good as the hogs head? someone asked. And lastly charging 6 pounds was a stupid idea (thats how much the food costs) because everyone gives me 10 or 5 pounds.

Ok end of complaints, generally I'm going to solve most of the problems by simply moving to a even better venue. Its called the polar bear and is located between Leicester Square and China town. It holds about 150 people max but I will never go for a event which holds more than 80 because it looses its personal and friendly touch when so many people are grouped into a room. Last night although being slighly cramp, the atmosphere was still friendly and fun.

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Author: Ianforrester

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