Thanks to everyone who submitted a video for our first-ever Show Off event at PDC05. We had 25 total submissions, and we had time to show 22 of them at Thursday night's 2-hour event. You can find all of the submitted videos on Channel 9 under the showoff tag. Please leave comments and feedback for each video so we know what to look for next time.
Interestingly enough, because we came up with the idea so late in the game, we were never able to announce Show Off to all of the PDC05 attendees. It wasn't printed in the PDC05 program guide, and it wasn't mentioned until just before the keynote on day 3. We were able to announce it using the Scarab plasma monitors that were scattered throughout the Los Angeles Convention Center, and I think that helped a lot. It was through blogging, podcasts, and .NET Rocks! that we were able to get the word out. We always intended this to be a community event, and the power of community helped make it a success. Thank you!
We were pleasantly surprised to see a nearly-full room of attendees, with some of them standing in the back. The energy was high, and there was a great show of support and applause at the end of each video. Based on the survey feedback, all but one of the completed surveys voted "thumbs up" for a future Show Off event. The clear feedback is that we need to do this again.
Although we didn't give out any awards, I do have a personal favorite that I believe embodies exactly what I had envisioned when we came up with this concept. Bar Code Blitz, by Lorin Thwaits, Lawrence Grant, E.W. Lloyd, and Andrew Holliday is brilliant. It has a bit of humor, a good setup, and creates a very cool (and useful) tool in under 5 minutes. The rapid typing effect combined with excellent voiceover work keeps the video moving, but it's never so fast that you can't follow what's going on.
Thomas Lewis and I tried to come up with as few rules and guidelines as possible, because we didn't want to limit the creativity of the submitters. But, we wanted to convey what type of video we were looking for. In the end, the litmus test for a good video seems to boil down to: "is this something that you'd pull your fellow developer into your office to watch?" For videos that have a heavy commercial/promotional aspect to them, the answer to this question is probably "no." For videos that make you say "wow," they clearly fit the bill.
I've rambled on a bit longer than I had planned, but if you have any comments, suggestions, or feedback about the videos, the Show Off concept, or what you'd like to see more of in the future, I encourage you to leave feedback or send me e-mail. Thanks!