The ride until the airport, the check in, security checks and flight have gone all smoothly. We got asleep for pretty much all the time and woke up with some marks in our faces and pin and needles in the arms, then we were waved goodbye by the supersmiling cabin crew (I have never seen people so happy and kind in a plane before, I think, without seeming stupid, that is).
Ohhh and there was another cool detail, the screens which usually are used for showing the average speed and temperature were used for showing the view from a camera placed in front of the plane, so you could see more or less what you could see if you were in the cockpit. Not a very impressive technological achievement but nonetheless cooler than just one schematic map of where we came from and where did we headed to.
As soon as we left the bags and all that in the hotel (which is also very good), we went to the party place. The Areena is surprisingly close to the hotel, but it is smaller than what we thought. I don’t know the numbers exactly but I’m pretty sure there are more people in Euskal party than in Assembly.
That said, these Finnish know how to make things impressive. There’s lot of equipment and decoration in the party, and just beginning with the simple fact that the inside is darker already helps to get into that underground feeling that any decent party needs.
Additionally, the Assembly TV not only is broadcasting live by internet but there’s also some TVs placed in the corridors surrounding the main area, showing whatever is currently being played on the AsmTV. That means there’s a lot of demos being played for people which probably won’t see them otherwise, and that’s always good. Even though there was no sound but I understand they don’t want to pollute more the sound environment, which is already quite filled in with stuff, with all the sponsor stands etc.
But the funnier part are the rules. There are lots of rules. I spent yesterday hours trying to read all of them, and I expected them to be followed, so when I came and found lots of big stereo systems in the party place I wondered what happened to the rules! It looks like little mini-raves or mini-environments are created by the people which bring even their own disco-ball. I haven’t taken any picture because I was deeply impressed but I’ll probably do it tomorrow. Or you can imagine it. Add some 1.5m tall speakers with 75cm wide subwoofers to the descriptions so it is richer.
When we came back this evening after meeting blackpawn which had just arrived, I had my bag searched. I knew that was going to happen (because I had read the rules!). So that was more rule-compliant, and I agreed with that. It seems I agreed so much that the guy inspecting my bag had to assure me it was everybody been looked for, not only me. Ahhh I collaborate too much!
It seems there is also a rule which prevents people from drinking and/or bringing alcohol inside the party. As it’s not something which really worries me I inadvertently forgot that I had read about that, and asked Leia: where’s your beer!? when I met her. And she said: but you haven’t been here before, have you!!!??
Ha! Of course not!
But it seems that I was kind of assuming that in a place which has lots of ads for Lapin Kulta all around (which happens to be a famous Finnish beer) they would serve beers to adults only. But they don’t trust the adults neither the teenagers in the party so what do they do? Ban all the alcohol!
I don’t have anything against that; somehow is a way of slashing the probability of incidents due to alcohol down to a minimum, so if I was an organiser I would try to cut down incidents to a minimum, always! But it doesn’t prevent it to look funny.
Then we’ve also found Sir Garbage Truck and all the rest of people: Gargaj, Zania, and people whom I know their faces but not their names :-D
Truck was very proud of his creation: scenebooth which happened to be a place to which newcomers can go and meet sceners and enjoy demos and learn about the scene and great things to come! So he managed to move all of us from the oldskool area and bring us to the physical representation of the Scene Booth. I’ll probably hang around there tomorrow when I am done with having a little walk around Helsinki (while trace and blackpawn finish their demo).
They also did a Demoscene outreach panel, featuring Gloom, Truck, Waffle and Gargaj, and although it was funny for people which knew what was the demoscene about, I can’t but presume that all the newcomers left the seminar area in a very confused state of mind. If you have to talk about demoscene to someone which doesn’t know anything, golden rule: Show them a demo!
But it is a good beginning. There should be more demoscene outreach * wherever possible. The Scene Booth itself looks promising. We need more of these initiatives, and I hope some people gets interested into all of that, specially young people which as it was commented, just consider a computer as a household resource and don’t think of it as a creative medium.
And basically that has been today. Now if you don’t mind I’m going to sleep a bit :-)
PD I finally managed to finish and upload my song into the Party management system. It took ages to upload and I had to ask for help because the form is quite confusing to understand but at the end it worked. Oh well, I should say our song because -trace- r08028 also did some work on it when he saw me creatively stuck. In BCN party style, place your bets. Will it pass preselection?