Ignite Liverpool returns for people to share passions
THE COOL kids of the PowerPoint world took over the Contemporary Urban Centre in Liverpool tonight for the second Ignite Liverpool event.
The celebration of "geek culture" saw presentations on subjects ranging from brass bands to the importance of making software accessible to disabled people.
The event saw a selection of speakers - including me - give five-minute PowerPoint presentations on subjects close to their heart.
To keep their speeches short, they had to use 20 on-screen slides that advanced automatically every 15 seconds.
to see live tweets from the event, search Twitter for the Ignite hashtag.
The event started with Dr Lorraine Warren of the University of Southampton discussing Value Creation in the creative industries.
Next Chrissy Hammond spoke about the importance of inclusion and getting people of all backgrounds involved in your activities.
Hammond, who uses a wheelchair, illustrated her point with a slide showing a picture of the back of people's legs - the view she too often sees at events.
"This is what networking means for me," she said. "Bums".
LIPA student Emma Thurlby spoke next about the "undervalued social community art" of brass bands, and her all-female brass band "Boobs and Brass".
Fellow LIPA student Nia Moore debated the Conservative manifesto and what it meant for the arts before I spoke about Wimpy restaurants and why people should make an effort to explore the communities around them.
John McKerrell spoke about why he chooses to track his location online. McKerrell, who runs website MapMe.at, used maps and graphics to plot his journeys across Liverpool and the world.
McKerrell wowed the audience without even speaking by demonstrating his iPad.
Paul Freeman next talked about "productivity culture' and his journey of discovery through the world of self-help books, including The Ten Habits of Highly Effective People.
He said: "I bought a book about procrastination... Never got round to reading it."
The always enthusiastic Jonathan Deamer spoke next on why software companies should make their products more accessible, before Runcorn's Kirsty Walker spoke about TV website End Of Show. She raised one of the biggest laughs of the night when she said: "We spread our news like an STD, but with words."
LIPA student Fred Landmark spoke next about his love of John Hughes, and how he wanted to stage a live performace of The Breakfast Club.
Paying tribute to late director Hughes, he said: "He wrote both Home Alone movies. And the third, but I don't want to talk about that because it's s***."
Ambrose Reynolds of Urban Strawberry Lunch spoke about how his organization has helped transform St Lukes in Liverpool city centre - the "Bombed Out Church" - into the city's most unusual cinema.
And Herb Kim talked about how he successfully took his idea of a "Geordie TED conference" and created the popular 'Thinking Digital" event in Newcastle.
Finally everyone decamped to the Beer House bar for more debates - including debates on the leaders' debate being shown on the bar's big television screen.
The idea behind Ignite is that people debate their personal passions. The first event, held last month at Liverpool John Moores University's new Art and Design Academy proved such a hit that its organizers swiftly organized a follow-up. It's fair to say there will be more events after last night's success.