A note from our editor.

As you might know, for a time I suspended the calendar, because everything was cancelled, and we were all locked up anyway.

Then, as if by magic, everyone ‘pivoted’ and we all went online giving a whole new meaning to ‘the Zoomies‘.

At last count, I have at least six different apps that do video conferencing on my phone and lap top. In addition to Zoom I have:

  • Blue Jeans
  • WebEx
  • Jitsi Meet
  • MS Teams
  • Google Video conferencing (and also HangOuts)
  • YouTube and Facebook live; and
  • HouseParty, although that has proved to be a major bust.

If there’s an upside to Covid19, it’s got to be that the circle of events that you’re able to attend, has both widened and narrowed.

Narrowed in the sense that networking has been pared back to being added to Slack groups, joining in hackathons, finding no one on House Party when you feel like chatting except old boyfriends; and stalking Zoom participant lists, before tabbing over to LinkedIn to look people up and see who they are, only to find that sometimes, they’ve already looked you up, and there’s an invitation, or two, already waiting for you.

Expanded in the sense of the dramatic globalising effect that working from home, coupled with peoples’ need to engage, is having.

So many interesting people!

Supported by already disrupted sleep patterns, (themselves fuelled by my all-new devotion to all of the random power napping opportunities, that working from home, in winter, genuinely encourages), there is an all new potential for making authentic connections with experts half a world away, in subjects that they are leaders in, caused by crisis-driven innovation prompting the World’s universities, museums, start-up incubators and galleries to open their doors virtually and let antipodeans like me inside the inner sanctum.

Thanks to MeetUp and Eventbrite, I’m attending meetings in Singapore, the UK and Washington, across a wide range of subjects, and an even wider range of hours, of the day and the night.  

Granted, webinars are inexplicably exhausting.

However, I’m not sure I agree with Visy Industry’s Anthony Pratt when he mentioned, twice, in the one webinar we were both on, that COVID has brought the world of work “forward 30 years”.

I don’t think there could be any greater sign of technology having bypassed our current batch of corporate and industrial scions than a billionaire CEO suggesting that simple video conferencing, and the remote engagement it allows for, wouldn’t be important until after they retired. Or died. One of the two.

Do you know how much money on rent, plant, services and utilities not having an office, and working from home, or remotely, saves your business?

If it’s good enough for Square and Twitter, what is holding you back?

How much of your life are you spending on golf courses, or worse, going to the same hairdresser as POTUS 45 (correct me if, I’m wrong) that you didn’t realise Skype’s been around for nearly twenty years?

Importantly, someone, at some time, in any given webinar will eventually adopt what I like to call a ‘why isn’t this stupid thing working’ face.

And then, there are the show reels of people forgetting their manners and peeing and smoking, which I’m not going to link to because that’s AO.

Top tip: it pays to keep the light off in your ‘office’, until you’re able to check that your mic’s on mute and the video is set to OFF, just in case it isn’t.

(I’m not saying that I am always up, dressed and out of bed when I’m on a webinar.)

This week’s finds include the Microsoft Reactor MeetUP group in Sydney;  SGInnovate, CADAF digital art festival and the Courtauld Institute in the UK where I watched Aviva Burnstock, the Australian human, who occasionally appears on BBC TV’s ‘Fake or Fortune’ performing forensic analysis on paintings presenting some of the more unusual findings she’s made*.

I’m seeing and hearing ideas and methods and insights from places that I never would have had access to, except if I were there in person.

Not being allowed to leave the house on pain of death has never looked so good.  

In the words of Gwen Stefani, ‘watcha waiting for‘?

The calendar is up and free for you to browse. Or. You can take me up on my all new, one-time-only offer. Email me with your requests, and I’ll aim to find you three things that are on this month, that will help to get you through your life.

Or through the night.

Sign up for a freebie: Be sure to list the subjects that you think you need to know the most about, or I’ll send you to three of my personal faves.

What’s the catch here? I’d like your feedback about whether I got the choices right or wrong. And why.

*Unexpectedly, Aviva’s discoveries did not run to anything salacious. If the Romans have been spotted drawing dicks on public monuments since B.C. times, then there has to be at least one painter in history who has drawn a cock and balls, or else been pranked by a mate, leaving a rude speech bubble or the exact same thing, at sometime in history. That is an art show I would pay to go and see.

Coming up next: Incubators for grown ups. Is there such a thing?

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