Some observations from Lloyd at Perfect Path: Didn't someone think to bring a toBLOGgan?
Two aspects obviously differentiate the Chicago event from the European predecessors that I'm sure will have affected the conversation subtly - fewer women (Lilia, I think was the only one!) and a higher proportion of native English speakers (I'm not as sure on this one, but I'd guess Lilia again might have been the only non-native anglophone).
No one thought to bring a toboggan, though many people arrived covered in snow. The thought of walking a few blocks to a lunch place was dropped in favor of ordering pizza and a short snowball fight. (Did you look at the pictures of the window wiki.)
Lilia was the only woman in attendance. However, three of the five last-minute drops were female.
Martin Geddes might argue that he was the only native English speaker, having been drawn into the mix at the last minute when Stuart Henshall discovered Martin was doing business in the Chicago area this week. But then Denham comes from a Commonwealth country.
Half of the attendees live outside the Chicagoland area, two of which were from the other side of the Atlantic. Two were from the San Francisco Bay area. Two from the St. Louis area, One from Boston and another from Indianapolis. It took organizing a workshop with a person from thousands of miles away to discover that Tom Sherman lives only a few blocks from me.
As people introduced themselves in the morning, I discovered that most people had multiple identities in terms of "what they do" or where they work. Several have primary employers where the concepts of knowledge management or social software are only loosely connected to their regular work. Everyone, it seems, is interested in social software because they see the possible value and this BlogWalk served to introduce people to one another.
As I look through the list of names, I see a number of consultants and a number of technologists within their place of business. There were a couple academics (researchers), two lawyers, one advertising person, several educators, one person from a manufacturing concern, and one from a software company.