Our fearless band manager John Battelle is the co-host, along with Tim O'Reilly, of the Web 2.0 Summit, a huge confab where Internet heavyweights talk big vision. Combined, John and Tim know everyone on the Internet (and their brothers) and so they always line up great talkers. They've just announced the speaker list for this year's Web 2.0, to be held November 5-7 in San Francisco. It's no "insider baseball" Internet conference. Indeed, the big thematic question of Web 2.0 2008 is: "How can we apply the lessons of the Web to the world at large?" Folks like Al Gore, Lance Armstrong, Saul Griffith, Elon Musk, and Michael Pollan will attempt to provide some answers. From Battelle's post on Searchblog:
As we convene the fifth annual Web 2.0 Summit, our world is fraught with problems that engineers might charitably classify as NP hard–from roiling financial markets to global warming, failing healthcare systems to intractable religious wars. In short, it seems as if many of our most complex systems are reaching their limits.
It strikes us that the Web might teach us new ways to address these limits. From harnessing collective intelligence to a bias toward open systems, the Web's greatest inventions are, at their core, social movements. To that end, we're expanding our program this year to include leaders in the fields of healthcare, genetics, finance, global business, and yes, even politics.
Increasingly, the leaders of the Internet economy are turning their attention to the world outside our industry. And conversely, the best minds of our generation are turning to the Web for solutions. At the fifth annual Web 2.0 Summit, we'll endeavor to bring these groups together.