I envisioned SledgeConf as a tiny in person conference, inspired by https://briancasel.com/tiny-conferences/. I hoped to hold one sometime in 2020, but was focused on some other projects. After the pandemic shut everything down the idea of holding it remotely seemed pretty achievable. So I took my original plan for a 2 day event and tried to launch a 2 day virtual event.
Marketing and promotion were the two sticking points for SledgeConf, my audience is not very large and I’m not any kind of event promoter. In the end only one of my friends agreed to present at the remote conference. I considered canceling the event, but I had already taken a day off from my job so I went ahead with the ‘conference’.
In the end we had two presentations and 7 people in total for SledgeConf. 5-10 people was the idea for the in-person conference and 7 worked well for a intimate casual setting. I also think that 2~ talks is the right number for an online conference. Watching presentations on your computer wears you out pretty fast and by the end of the second presentation I was worn out.
My costs were super low, only a basic zoom subscription. So despite being much smaller than hoped things worked out pretty well. Several attendees expressed interest in another SledgeConf. I’m thinking of holding a ‘Winter Sledge*Conf’ this winter. The plan would be to just have 2 talks and get everyone more lead time.