NTC 2011
Today was "Day Zero" at NTC and I must say, things are off to a good start.  This sold out event (roughly 2000) being held in Washington D.C. this year is just getting started and already there has been a good level of excitement and engagement by participants.  While I have attended this conference the past few years this year I have been able to experience it in a new way.

Get Your Volunteer On

This year I officially registered as a volunteer and have already found it worth wild for a number of reasons.

Online Community Becomes Real

While I interact with lots of folks via the interwebs throughout the year it is nice to be able to put real people behind the profile pics.  During my first shift as a "Name Badge Ninja" at the customer service desk I had the pleasure of meeting and working with such fantastic folks (and resources for all you nonprofit folks) as Julia Reich, Nelson Nayag and Judi Sohn.

The Ninja has another shift on Friday morning so be sure to look me up if you around that way.

Mix & Mingle Roll Call

In general, the people you have a chance to run into and connect with is far beyond any other opportunity.  Imagine your RSS feed somehow materialized into real people you were eating finger food with and you have a glimpse into part of the power of this conference.

To give you an idea of what I am talking about here is a short list of some of the super stars you may have found yourself running into here on Day Zero at anytime. Not to mention that if you are not already listening to what these folks are saying online the rest of the year you need to be.

Noland Hoshino | @nolandhoshino | http://bcausemedia.com

Debra Askanese | @askdebra | http://www.communityorganizer20.com

Amy Sample Ward | @amyrsward | http://amysampleward.org

Nancy Schwartz | @nancyschwartz | http://gettingattention.org

Beth Kanter | @kanter | http://www.bethkanter.org

Frank Berry | @franswaa | http://www.netwitsthinktank.com

Fara Trompeter | @farra | http://www.bigducknyc.com

Ivan Booth | @rootwork | http://rootwork.org

Kivi Leroux Miller | @kivilm | http://www.nonprofitmarketingguide.com

David Krumlauf | @dkrumlauf | http://piercefamilyfoundation.org

Deborah Elizabeth Finn | @debrorah909 | http://blog.deborah.elizabeth.finn.com

Stay Connected (Even If You Can't Be Here)

Still Time to join the NTC Online version of the conference.

Get the Latest News from the conference to feel like you are right there with us.

A cartoon glimpse into what you may have missed today at the Science Fair.

NTC Science Fair 2011

The fabulous Rob Cottingham, the NTC Official Cartoon Blogger, is giving his unique take on this year's conference. You'll see them on the socialsignal blog throughout the conference and at http://socialsignal.com/ntc2011.

More to come and would love to hear what others are up to here at the conference or from those attending online.

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What Others Are Saying

Ash can bring on the awesomeness! He's naturally curious about how technology can be used to make the world a better place. He then translates what he learns into useful, actionable information, and presents it in a way that is fun and engaging.He has a rare gift for making sense of technology and for showing a path forward with social media that is strategic and purposeful. He helps us all avoid Shiny Object Syndrome by guiding us to what is useful rather than what is simply new. Ash should be on everyone's go-to list for social media savviness.

~Erica Mills, Founder & CEO at Claxon Marketing~

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Co-Authored SMOBook book with

Noland Hoshino
Zan McColloch-Lussier