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Recharging, but not necessarily rebooting June 9, 2006

Posted by Tom in Housekeeping.

It's been a hectic period in my life, and the happenings on the horizon suggest that life won't slow down any time soon. So my wife and I are grabbing a long-overdue vacation. We'll be headed up Michigan's west coast – to South Haven (via the fabulous Tabor Hill Winery), Pentwater and eventually landing at a condo nestled in the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

So we're going to do the classic recharging trip – we've got some new tunes for the car, we'll be playing tourist, reading some good books (I know, my tastes aren't as broad as they should be), and enjoying the beach life.

Quite the counterpoint to Stowe Boyd, whose always-engaging /Message weblog kicked up about three notches with his recap of a conference in Copenhagen called Reboot8:

I left Reboot with a handful of email addresses, a half dozen blurry images from restaurants and train stations, and a few dozen new friends. And something more, something that has lodged beneath the skin, deeper than a glance at the program or even a thorough reading of the wiki would ever reveal.

So, I will stay at the edge, doing much the same things day-to-day: talking with start-ups, reviewing new tools, and thinking about their impact on how we do what we do. But, more and more, you will hear me talking about how this all means we can do new things, and that old ways and means can be put aside: that we can make changes for the better, and entice the world along with us, to where this is all headed.

Gandhi said "You have to be the change you want in the world," and Reboot has brought me back to that simple defining insight. The secret to purpose in life (or happiness, or enlightenment, or meaning) is that there is no secret: its right here, in front of you, right now. And Reboot, for me at least, was in fact that kind of shining mirror, where I relearned that the key to finding my way in the world is to find myself, to rediscover what drives me to get up every morning and attack the empty white page, and to knit these observations into the skein of others' thoughts, needs, and aspirations. By working on the small, I am made large. By focusing on here and now, I am working toward what lies beyond.

And that's just a fraction of his account of what must've been one terrific trip. Having looked at the concept of Reboot, I am totally envious. I'm not a hyper-gregarious guy by nature, but the idea of trying to piece together elements of technology and social thought with a splash of the arts, politics and religion piques my interest. I would love to hang with that crowd – to soak it in and learn what they have to say.

But that's rebooting, and my wife and I need to recharge. So we'll take our books and beach chairs up north for a little break. And I already know I'm going to ponder the innovative logo from Reboot8:

The "goodbye industrial thinking" bubble came as a bit of a surprise. I like to think that I operate in realms that cover many of the other bubbles. That one bubble, though…I honestly don't know if I've totally shed myself of the industrial way of thinking. I suppose I now have something to ponder while I recharge on the shores of Lake Michigan.

On a housekeeping note, the past two weeks have seen tremendous growth in visitor activity at Convergence. Whether it's people checking out the site on their own or on a tip from a friend (thanks, Jack Schultz – and welcome, NASA SATS visitors!) – or even tapping my RSS feed to deliver Convergence to their desktop or email box – your activity on the site is gratifying. It's a labor of love to share the information I learn through the course of my work, but it's downright exciting to know that there are people who share the same passions for building communities through investment in people. Thanks for coming, and keep coming back.

I'll be back in town in about 8 days. Have a great week, everyone!



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