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GV Annual meeting 2006 – the story so far

We’re about three hours into the first day of the GV Annual meeting here in Delhi – you can follow along in several different ways – the whole conference is being live blogged by Ange and SJ at the GV Delhi blog. There’s a live audio stream of the conference available, and there’s an active IRC channel going on as well at #globalvoices at irc.freenode.net. I suspect that if you searched for GV on flickr, you’d find a photostream as well. (Indeed, there is – Rebecca’s already got a slideshow up on Global Voices…)

Organizing a conference more or less guarantees that you don’t really get to participate in it. I’m sitting in the back of the room, trying to nurse our routers back to health. We’ve got a 512kbps leased line, which is allowing us to stream the conference, but a room full of laptop-wielding browsers is killing the two wireless access points we brought with us.

This, in some ways, is progress from yesterday, when I was killing the WAPs – we blew up a power supply last night as we tried out our wireless network. Boris and Jeremy, god bless them, went out to the market and bought a bunch of 220v power supplies which we thought might be capable of powering the WAPs. At dinner last night with Indian networking pioneer, Ashok Jhunjhunwalla, Boris and I borrowed an electric outlet in the middle of the restaurant and tried these new power supplies with one of our WAPs, and high-fived when it turned out to work.

The logistics behind this conference have been mind-bogglingly complex and, frankly, mind-bogglingly screwed up. We couldn’t book rooms at the same place we’re holding the conference, and because it’s the busiest season in Delhi, we ended up in a hotel about half an hour’s drive from the conference center. Which could have worked out well, if they’d actually given us the 35 rooms we booked – instead, they gave 15 away, and we ended up trying to position all our attendees in twenty rooms. So compared to that, a couple of exploding access points is hardly worth complaining about…