Blogging from ETech 2005 - My first billionaire sighting
Update: A speaker from MIT went online and found the genetic sequence of Smallpox and pasted it into a form field on a website by a company that makes DNA to order. Everybody in the audience was sorta freaked out but he said there are measures in place to prevent what that from happeneing. He also explained how DNA is sloppy and redundant, took a jab a creationists. I wish I had a camera, students at MIT created a glob of bacteria that spelled "Hello World" which got an applause out of the audience as that's typically the first thing you learn to do in computer programming.
Nokia had an interesting presentation but the speakers were a little nervous. They did a nice little crowd pleasing demo, an automated contact send feature that works by proximity. Someone astutely pointed out that there could be privacy concerns in a subway.
There was a really good energetic atmosphere there (free Starbucks probably didn't hurt), lots of foreign accents and journalists. Everybody had their laptops and there was a weird sound I've never heard before, 100s of laptop keyboards clicking in unison. It sounded a little like a flock of pigeons taking flight.