The last session was about how we, as young people can change the world. The first two sessions were by entrepreneurs. Patrick Lor spoke about how iStockPhoto became one of the top 500 web sites in the world, and was later sold to Getty Images. His presentation had a lot of images, which I bet he sourced from iStockPhoto (except a couple of Spongebob ones).
Both Patrick, and the next speaker, Andre Charoo gave some tips on how to succeed. Nothing new here though.
The next speaker was Chamath Palihapitiya, the VP of Growth, Mobile and International at Facebook. He spoke about how Facebook the platform was enabling individuals to create change. Ironically he used one of those 1 million people for xyz groups in his presentation.
Chamath was followed by Matthew Hockenberry who works on the OLPC project, but he also discussed a bit about his research area in trying to find multiple solutions to a problem – and sometimes finding solutions to other things in the process.
Eric Chivian was a Nobel Peace Prize winner for his work on stopping nuclear war, and he was there to promote his new book on biodiversity. His talk gave a couple of anecdotes on how animals and nature have progressed medicine, and how the extinction of animals such as polar bears will cause potential cures to be lost forever.
The final speaker was Melody Hossaini who was a youth leader on Al Gore’s Climate project. She showed a lot of pictures of herself and used herself as an example of how one can be active and incite change.
Overall, this was the best session of the conference since it gave a coherent message of how we could change the world as young people. What I think was impressive about this event was the quality of the speakers. Although they were not A-list celebrities, at least they were B or maybe C list ones. Why would they come to an inaugural conference targeted towards young people? Who knows, but it was entertaining and worth the money.