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brief notes about the people
  I've been haggling with myself over whether or not I wanted to include this. Partly, I'm afraid of missing key folks. Partly, I don't want it to get maudlin. Largely, I'm afraid it's gonna read like I'm writing yearbook entries for these people. Well, so be it. It is to these folks I am largely indebted for the marvelous experience I had there.

Tim Gasperak - "The Quiet One"
My main Austin connection, Tim proved to be a most gracious and giving host. The strong, silent type, he can be found in large groups of people, observing.

Jon Littell - "The Smart One"
Jon was kind enough to offer me hospice for five days. An aggressively smart man, he's the only person I've seen attract undivided attention at a party when discussing how lexical constructs shape the way we organize information.

Pableaux Johnson - "The Funny One"
Or, perhaps better, "The Food Guy." Pableaux made a tasty mean gumbo our second night in town, thereby winning tons of friends. He became firmly ensconced in our group, and could be depended upon for leading us to the best Tex-Mex and margaritas.

Okay. That's enough with the Beatles references. Shame I don't have a "Cute One." :p

Patricia Colley
What can I say? A powerful, powerful woman. Not in some brute physical sense. There's something in her spirit that's deep and grounded. A woman with a lot of stories to tell. Who can reciprocate fierce hugs. And who, inexplicably, became kleptomaniacal around my beverages.

Heather Anne Halpert
The hostess with the best hair. (You can get a tantalizingly brief taste of her 'do in this
photo. She's back against the wall, to the left of the door.) A shining, sweet woman who is always happy to see you. And she unknowingly stirred my Geek Heart by divulging her love for reading about physics.

Eric Gould
The man with the plan. He didn't just moderate the Interface Design as Social Architecture panel (of which I was a member), he orchestrated it to ensure a maximal level of discourse to engage ourselves and our audience. He also has a remarkable manner of bounding around a room as ideas click together.

Denise Burton
Denise warmly greeted me to IBM's HCI lab, where, over lunch with some of her colleagues, we discussed all manner of issues around interface design, information architecture, e-commerce, and other such topics. Her generous hospitality made me feel welcome even apart from my tight group of Webhead friends..

Mocha Jean Herrup
For having the faith to place me on the panel that got me to South by Southwest, I'm utterly thankful to Mocha. Orchestrating much of the interactive conference, she was always calm, cool, and collected. And damn if she doesn't wear the best ties.

Lane Becker
Technically no longer an Austinite (he moved to Brooklyn a couple months ago), Lane very capably accepted the role of guide to we furriners. More important for me, though, was that Lane and I became true friends; always the last one in the Blazer (his hotel was a bit out of the way), we had plenty of time to share thoughts; and thoughts always ring truer after two in the morning--tiredness weakens those mechanisms that inhibit honesty.