Facebook F8: A San Francisco Treat

Last week I traveled to San Francisco for the first time since co-founding LazyMeter.  It was difficult to justify a business trip, but I decided Facebook’s F8 would be a good networking opportunity.  I can now say with confidence that the trip was well worth the investment.

Highlights of my trip included:

  • Being in a room full of people who have succeeded doing what I’m trying to do.  While I’ve heard and read that it can be done, this was the first time I really got to see it firsthand.  I was shocked by how young and happy these hackers were.  I couldn’t help but compare the Facebook crowd to the Microsoft crowd.  At Microsoft there was an attitude that young employees need to slowly work their way up the ranks; at Facebook, the young employees are running the show – and very effectively.
  • I created connections with other entrepreneurs.  Overall, entrepreneurs I spoke to seemed much more enthusiastic about LazyMeter than the ones in Seattle.  They instantly understood what we were building, and gave me instant feedback on the solution they want to see.
  • I met Dave McClure.  He’s following me on twitter.  This alone was worth the trip.
  • Between the F8 conference and after-party, I ended up at a bar with the 10 or so top leaders of and investors in Facebook, including Mark Zuckerberg.  For the first time, I felt like I was a part of the startup community.  Seeming as I never received a tab, I think they bought me dinner too – so thanks Mark.
  • Seeing Luke Shepard, good friend and Facebook engineer, speak at the conference.  It’s amazing to see people find themselves, and seeing it first-hand only makes me more driven to succeed.  Special thanks to Luke for urging me to come, and for putting me up for the week.

Also last week, LazyMeter was mentioned in a blog post by Brad Feld.  With more and more attention on LazyMeter, I’m gaining confidence that we have the connections we’ll need to be successful.  We just need the product.  With more people watching us comes more pressure to deliver.  Fortunately, we are progressing quickly.

Do I feel the need to move to San Francisco?  Look for my answer in tomorrow’s post.

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