My review of Big Omaha 2011 in a word: focused.
I went into this conference looking for something smaller and more intimate. What I found was a collection of some of the most directed and sharp minds I've ever been around. The conference allowed me to get close to these folks and have genuine conversations with them, since they weren't preoccupied with other events happening just around the block (which is so often the case at SXSWi, for example).
The speakers were excellent and made themselves readily available instead of scampering off to a VIP room immediately after speaking. (Gary Vaynerchuk gets props for calling that practice out.) At one point, I found myself on stage with Gary and asked him about romance and World of Warcraft. I got too excited.
I also did an on-camera interview with Big Omaha's video team Malone & Co., wherein I touched on the best aspects of Big Omaha (people genuinely want to be there), what I learned there and how I want to utilize it (to make Boulder even better) and how absolutely thrilled I was to have snagged a ticket (which were limited to 600 or so).
I describe Big Omaha as "focused" because there isn't a lot of garbage standing between you and a great conversation. It's a single track affair, which I LOVED. (I had expressed reservations about this in my previous post.) By eliminating a lot of the conference clutter, Big Omaha allows you to focus on the content and extracting inspiration from it because your head is freed up to actually think about it, instead of racing around trying to check in everywhere.
I will return. I will bring friends. I just hope there are tickets available. Best problem in the world to have. Nice work, Big Omaha!