It has been 4 years since my last conference and I’ve reflected on how to do something palpably more extraordinary than previous. I have created eg2006, a three-day event featuring some of the most thoughtful, intelligent names in music, entertainment, science, and technology. This will be my next, best and last and is based on the mantra of making information entertaining & entertainment informative.
This conference is centered on the things I enjoy and find intriguing and will feature a remarkable group of speakers.
These speakers are being asked to talk - not promote. They are asked to focus on their passions and not describe their future IPO. I’ve designed the conference around ten sessions, mostly with four individual speakers, not panels, and sometimes not related to each other but related to the title of the session, and focusing on some aspect of that part of the entertainment industry, which I think is both healthy and informative.
The music session will start off with Walt Mossberg talking on how music has changed probably more in the last five years as a result of the iPod, the MP3 and Napster than by the musicians themselves. There will also be an interview with Chris Blackwell who discovered & managed Bob Marley and founded Island Records. That session will also have Herbie Hancock as well as Yo-Yo Ma who will play, but particularly will talk about the Silk Road instruments and the Silk Road cultures in music.
Not only will we be in the striking Skirball Center, the architect Moshe Safdie himself will be there along with other greats, Frank Gehry, Richard Meier, and David Rockwell to discuss place&space.
The entertainment as our cultural mirror session will be addressed by Dick Wolf, as many of us know law through Law & Order, and our medical ethics come to us often through ER, and space from the various Tom Hanks films and the Second World War.
Science&learning is my joy in television. We will have The Science Guy of course, but also we will have IBM and National Geographic, and Spencer Wells demonstrating the Genographic project, and everybody will get a kit that takes your DNA and analyzes it to tell you where you came from 72,000 years ago, through Africa and out through either Europe or Asia, etc. I TiVo and watch hours of Discovery Channel weekly – it’s my addiction.
Nothing has had more of a revolution than animation&imaging and we will all know the day will come when long dead actors will seem live again in movies. And of course animation&imaging feeds into the satire&humor session, the last and the most permission giving. Focusing on the permission to have thoughts, to see life, to say things that you would never say, think things that you would never think. Matt Stone, who bridges from the session before with his simplified animation technique and is often working up to the edge and sometimes leaping over it, and Matt Groening and Norman Lear, are two other people that will join that group.
And if that’s not enough, while dining on Omaha steaks, Empire Kosher chickens, caviar, and Mondavi wine, we will be entertained and wowed by the newest products and technology provided by the sponsors, affiliates and speakers, including a marvelous exhibit by Kodak and the conference booklet by WIRED magazine.
1/2/3 February 2006 in L.A.