The Nantucket Project

It has been a couple of months since I last posted here as I am in the process of transitioning my websites but I thought I’d go ahead and share a somewhat time-sensitive update. Late last month my wife, Linda, and I volunteered at The Nantucket Project (TNP), the fourth annual thinkfest held on the island of Nantucket, Massachusetts, where regular readers will remember we lived for several months during our sabbatical of a couple years ago.

As it turned out, we were already set to visit the island for a vacation through the good graces of friends who invited us to housesit their place while they were off-island. It was only after booking our flights that I realized the good timing of our visit coinciding with TNP. I applied for a fellowship since attending the event cost about $4,000 but did not get one; however, I was invited to volunteer and quickly signed up Linda also.

The theme of the conference explored the intersection of art and commerce and its resulting values. In addition to some cool, free shirts (pictured above), we also got to attend several of the sessions, including a surprise visit from Secretary of State John Kerry (who has a home on-island), and a surreal appearance by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange via hologram in real time from his asylum at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

I also got to meet some very interesting people, including influential tech columnist Walt Mossberg (formerly of the Wall Street Journal), documentary filmmaker Eugene Jarecki (who interviewed Assange live), founder of the TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) conferences Richard Saul Wurman, copyright activist (and a founding board member of Creative Commons) Larry Lessig, and several others. Linda helped with event registration, I assisted with video production and we both had fun.