Monthly Archives: September 2006

We are at the 4 week countdown to BarCampMontreal. An email reminder has been sent to registrants and interested parties… at least those that actually left some way to track down their email address!

The entirety of the email is reproduced below, for those who did not leave an email address on the Registration page and thus are unreachable.

Thank you to Laura Vizbara for translating the email.

[English Message Below]

** Répondez S.V.P pour confirmer votre présence **

Cher BarCamper,

Je m’appelle Fred Ngo, et je suis l’organisateur principal du
tout premier BarCampMontréal, qui aura lieu samedi, le 21 octobre
2006. Il y a quelque temps, vous avez trouvé le site Internet du
BarCamp, et y avez indiqué votre intérêt. Je vous écrit pour vous
rappeler que le jour du camp approche!

Si vous n’avez pas regardé la liste des participants
dernièrement, vous devriez le faire. Il semble y figurer plusieurs
grands noms de visionnaires montréalais dans le domaine de la
technologie de pointe. Nous pouvons nous attendre à un évènement très

Par contre, n’y restant que 4 semaines, il est bon temps de
penser comment vous pouvez faire un succès de votre « non-conférence

Rappelez-vous la devise du BarCamp: “Pas de spectateurs,
seulement des participants”. On attend que tout le monde qui assiste
au BarCamp fasse une contribution d’une manière ou d’une autre: soit
en donnant une présentation, en aidant avec une présentation, en
aidant avec l’organisation, en contribuant avec du bénévolat ou toute
autre activité qui ferait de vous un participant actif.

Si vous désirez être présent, je vous prie de communiquer avec
moi par courrier électronique à pour
m’informer du titre et du sujet de votre présentation, ainsi que la
durée de temps que vous aimeriez être alloué. On encourage les
présentations d’avoir une durée soit de 15, 30 ou 45 minutes. (Il est
important de m’en informer pour que je puisse m’assurer d’offrir une
bonne variété de sujets parmi les présentations). Brièvement, voici
quelque sujets potentiels: Web 2.0, le marketing relié à l’Internet,
commencer une entreprise à Montréal, communications, etc. Je suis
certain que vous avez davantage de sujets en tête.

Je maintiens une liste de tâches à compléter sur le blog de
l’organisation du BarCampMontréal. S’il vous intéresse d’aider avec un
aspect quelconque de l`organisation de l’évènement, je vous prie de
m’en informer.

Finalement, je vous remercie de continuer de parler du BarCampMontréal!

Ma vision du premier BarCampMontréal consiste d’un évènement où
tout les participants auront vraiment l’occasion de se connaître et de
former des connections et des amitiés réelles qui vont endurer. Dans
cet esprit, j’ai hâte de vous rencontrer et d’avoir la chance de
connaître chacun d’entre vous..

Au plaisir de se voir au BarCampMontréal!

Fred Ngo (pour tout relié au BarCamp) (courrier personnel)

P.S. Comme d’habitude, tout les détails (le jour, l’heure, l’endroit,
etc.) sur le camp sont disponibles à

** Please reply with the confirmation of your attendance. **

Dear BarCamper,

My name is Fred Ngo, and I am the primary organizer of the
inaugural BarCampMontreal, to be held on October 21st, 2006. Some time
ago, you found the BarCamp website and registered your interest. Now,
I would like to remind you that the camp is almost here!

If you haven’t taken a look at the registration list lately, you
should really do so. It looks like a “Who’s Who” of high-tech
visionaries in Montreal. We are really going to have an incredibly
good time.

But at only 4 weeks away, it is time to start thinking about how
you can make your “un-conference” a success.

Please remember that the motto of BarCamp is: “No spectators,
only participants”. We will interpret that to mean everybody who comes
to BarCampMontreal is expected to contribute in some fashion: by
giving a presentation, helping with a presentation, helping with the
organization, volunteering, or otherwise being an active participant.

If you would like to present, please send me a note at to let me know the title and topic of your
presentation and how long of a timeslot you would like. We are
encouraging presentations to be 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or 45 minutes
long. (It is important to let me know so that I can make sure we have
a good variety of presentation topics.) Some potential topics off the
top of my head: Web 2.0, open-source software, internet marketing,
startup life in Montreal, communications and buzz, venture capital,
angel investing, etc. I am sure you can think of many more.

I maintain a list of “To Do” items at the BarCampMontreal
organizational blog at If you
would like to help out with any of the organizational tasks, please do
let me know.

Last but not least, please do continue to spread the word about

My vision of the inaugural BarCampMontreal is one where all the
participants will actually be able to get to know each other and make
real, lasting connections and friendships. In that spirit, I look
forward to meeting and getting to know each and every one of you.

See you at BarCampMontreal!

Fred Ngo (BarCamp stuff) (Personal)

P.S. As always, all the details (date, time, location, etc.) about the
camp are available at

The organization of BarCampMontreal is moving right along. Mr. Austin Hill has donated a projector for the event, and, more incredibly, lined up several corporate sponsors. It looks like we will soon have some funds to work with, and when I get more details I’ll post a preliminary budget. Primarily the funds will be used to make T-Shirts and perhaps provide lunch.

Mr. Ed Lui, an ex-Torontonian like myself, volunteered for the herculean job of going through the BarCampMontrealRegistrants page to extract a list of email addresses of all the interested parties, and a reminder email will be going out to them shortly. (I am targeting the 30-day mark for that.) We were not able to extract everybody’s email addresses, so if you have “registered” and did not leave any contact information… please revisit the page and do so!

More soon!

1. Work on the logo

I really need somebody with PhotoShop skills to work on this one. Please take a look at the logos for BarCampTdot, BarCampVancouver, and BarCampOttawa for ideas… Perhaps something with a Fleur-de-lys, or the City of Montreal logo? (Actually, forget the City of Montreal logo, it’s ugly!)

2. Translate everything to French

I have 2 volunteers ready to do this! The prototype page is up at

3. Find Donations for the Following

  • Projector and Projector Screen
  • Coffee? Bottled water? Should we be providing refreshments for a free event???
  • I wonder if we can get a donation for printed T-shirts with the BarCampMontreal logo?
  • Do we need any other equipment?

4. Email a reminder to everybody on the pre-registration list

5. Start brainstorming a list of possible presentation topics

6. Finalize Location Done!

As I mentioned in the previous post, I was working on finalizing a space for BarCampMontreal. Well, it’s been done; BarCampMontreal has a location!

BarCampMontreal will be held on October 21st, 2006 starting at 10:00am to 6:00pm, at Cat’s Corner. The address is 486 St. Catherine St. W, Suite 303 [Google Map].

Cat's Corner Sitting AreaCat’s Corner will be sponsoring BarCampMontreal by donating 2200 sqft of loft space along with chairs, tables, sound equipment, wireless microphones, couches, air-conditioning, Wi-Fi, basically everything.

Actually, using Cat’s Corner is cheating a little bit… Because I am the founder of Cat’s Corner! Originally I didn’t want to use Cat’s Corner (like I said because I thought it was cheating; I’m strange that way), but after looking around various sub-par locations (including some of the local universities) that wanted to charge me money (in some cases several hundred dollars!) I figured using Cat’s Corner wouldn’t be bad at all.

The great thing about using my own location for an event is that I have complete control over everything. I have all the keys, I know how all the technical systems work, I know exactly where everything is, and I am answerable and accountable to no-one. It actually removes from consideration many moving parts! If you haven’t guessed, I am somebody who likes to nail things down whenever possible so that I can concentrate on the remaining variables.

It’s always nice to seemingly get something for free, but in actuality this is a true sponsorship with a definite monetary value! Why? In order to make the space available to us, I had to cancel the courses being offered that day (that took a bit of time). This means Cat’s Corner is basically taking the revenues derived from those hours and diverting that same amount of money into BarCampMontreal, giving rise to a quantifiable monetary value. But of course an event like BarCampMontreal is worth it!