This is what I tweeted out when I was feeling a wee bit tipsy and a lot overwhelmed on the bus home from the annual National Digital Forum conference this week. This year was my first time attending NDF (not including sneaking into the drinks last year when I masqueraded as the government Chief Historian, thanks Neill!) and I was really blown away by the generous and supportive nature of the event. I must admit that, due in the main to its name, it has never been an obvious conference for me to attend and I often wondered how I could participate or what I would get out of it. Thankfully, I now know the answer to that and will explore that in a fuller post but for now, I want to reflect on some other really positive things that I’ve been thinking about.
1. Past NDF presentations
Two years ago Serena Chen spoke at NDF and it was her 15 minute talk that people urged me to watch. It was a simple introduction into what digital platforms can offer and made the connection for me about why NDF could be a space that I felt comfortable in and could benefit from. As a non-tech person, this was a good entry point for me because it started with the why and worked its way back to the how.
Have a watch:
2. Next conferences
One of the worst things about a conference ending is that, if it’s been a particularly good time like NDF was, it’s a major downer to leave. I am really grateful to be able to attend some really interesting conferences in the next couple of weeks: if we never met – A wānanga on indigenous curating and End of Fashion. Can’t wait. Will report back!
3. Tipi haere to Tāmaki Makaurau
A colleague and I are heading up to Auckland next week and this really awesomely also means that we’re going to get the chance to check out the Lindauer exhibition at Auckland Art Gallery and the Volume: Making Music exhibition at Auckland Museum. Legit can’t fucking wait for either of these!!! Seriously can’t get over how slick both these institutions are.
Campbell’s performance from the opening:
4. Self care
A lot of the podcasts that I listen to have been talking about how we can look after ourselves in a nonsensical world. The tips are generally all about checking in with each other, reading, having baths, going for walks, getting some sun i.e. really obviously pragmatic stuff. Nina gave me a good one and that was just to listen to music and I second that, it was a good reminder that I gotta just let my mind rest sometimes and podcasts often don’t allow me to do that. My number one tip, mainly because I’m doing it right now, is to just eat some chocolate and drink some tea. Whittaker’s Coconut Block for LIFE.
5. Rewarding awards
The closing address from the outgoing chair of NDF, Matthew Oliver, was such a great wrap-up of the past couple of days as it extracted the content and put it into a global and social context. It made real what we were talking about and why we need to keep going. Matthew also had the task of handing out some awards. To our great surprise, we won two of them. We were awarded The Great Collaborator award (which I got to take home along with a bottle of pinot gris and it is now hanging on the wall at home thanks to a very proud husband) which was decided by the board. The second award we won was for being a project that would inspire people to make a change in their practice or work life once they were back at work and was voted by the delegates (Nina took this one home with a bottle of pinot noir). So, in short, we were totally blown away, completely fucked up one acceptance speech and then choked our way through the second one. But as always, we must give full credit to our contributors and readers because without you, we’re nothing. Oh and as always, my thanks to my girl Nina, couldn't do this without her!
This week’s waiata is the song that came on as I was on the bus to NDF on the sunny Tuesday morning and damn, I'm ending this week feeling gooooood: