LIFT08Just arrived @LIFT for its second day, as expected its first day was an intense experience, coming to LIFT always has the effect of recharding another… could be for the frenetic sharing of ideas, the conversations, I honestly don’t know! But I know others that probably agree with me.

LIFT as evolved, Laurent’s team introduced a lot of changes and managed to somehow take LIFT to the next level, I’ll be posting my notes from the different talks I’ve attended on the next coming days, but I would like to highlight some of the things that really got my attention on the first day:

Genevieve Bell

Genevieve BellGBell is an internationally recognized ethnographer, and she actually gave one of the best presentation of day, or could just be me, who am a bit biased towards her presentation subject: Secrets, lies & digital deceptions. As a society we all basically lie and we’ve managed to introduce this behavior into our online life’s.

During my workshop here at LIFT I’ve talked a lot about the role of personalization inside online communities, the importance of identity, the need we as humans have to make some sort of ‘impressions’ management and the image we try to project trough our online avatars. I’ve talked a bit how the creation of this personas empower’s us as users to adapt to specific contexts. It has all to do with Integration.

So to some extent it was nice to hear someone like Genevieve stating precisely that, how people lie to adapt, as a self-defense mechanism that helps protect our identity. At the same time, sharing secrets seems to be the base of trust, as in real life, the sharing is what brings us together, so does the same somehow happens online, the more information you share about yourself the more people somehow trust you and your avatar.

Her passionate presentation is already available on video, so take sometime, I really think it’s worth it.

Jonathan Cabiria

Jonathan CabiriaStill on the same line of though, Jonathan also gave an great presentation on Permeability. Permeability in the sense of what comes out of our online lives and somehow crosses to our real life and vice-versa. According to Jonathan by being in virtual worlds, people are many times confronted with hidden parts (facets) of themselves, they get the ability of trying out things they might not feel comfortable to do in real life for oh so many reasons. Jonathan also presented a study that showed how this good feelings managed to transpose themselves to the real world and have helped people suffering from depressions to recover from it by rising their feelings of integration, loneliness, isolation, pessimism and/or low self-esteem.

What I took from Jonathan’s message is that the online and real worlds are merging, we’re seeing people moving a big part of their ‘social’ lives online. One interesting thought he mentioned was how many times, developers like myself don’t really grasp the entire implications of a social platform that we’ve built. The social applications of a social platform is many times bigger than expected and reaches people and highs that could have never been predicted.

Second day is just starting so for now I just leave this two very short comments on yesterday’s presentations but I promise to write a bit more as soon as I managed to digest all the input I got from yesterday.

One final note for the amazing work that Cristiana and her team from Bread and Butter produced for this year, there are a total of 10 different art projects!