At the NTEN awards on Friday, Marnie Webb took the Person of the Year award, and rightly so! In honor of Marnie, a key originator of the nptech community, I want to share the story of how I met her. And try to make her blush a bit more. 🙂
In 2004, I was reading Jon Udell‘s Infoworld columns about a new technology called “Really Simple Syndication”, RSS. The technology interested and thrilled me a bit, because it looked like it might provide a much needed management tool for web-based information (which it did). In early 2005, I was browsing through popular bookmarked web sites at Del.icio.us, a web site that made innovative use of RSS, and saw a link entitled “The Top 10 Reasons that Nonprofits Should Use RSS“. I noted that the author, one Marnie Webb, of course, worked near me in SF at Compumentor/Techsoup. The next week, I ran across a post by the same Ms. Webb to the del.icio.us mailing list. Armed with the knowledge that there was someone else obsessed with the same technology trends and potential that I was, I emailed her and said “You don’t know me, but we have to have lunch”.
The rest is this story — this blog, Techcafeteria, my happiness in finding/joining NTEN, which Marnie introduced me to. We started up the nptech aggregator web site, as the next logical progression in Marnie’s campaign to get people around the world referring useful information to each other via that ubiquitious tag. But I am positive that my story is far from unique — Marnie is one of those people who, in her unassuming way, promotes ideas and community. So, good work NTEN, and great work Marnie! A well-deserved award.