Bonjour all! I’m back in Paris, and I’m so ready for tomorrow’s conference to begin!
The trip from San Francisco to Paris is 10.5 hours on the way out, so I knew I had to be prepared. My flight was a red-eye overnighter and there is a nine hour time difference, so I stayed up way too late the night before my trip and cut out caffeine yesterday so I’d be able to nap a bit on the plane. Truth be told, I’m quite exhausted now, but I’m ready to hit the ground running bright and early tomorrow for the conference kick off!
On the plane, I stayed occupied with some new phone games and watched Monster University – so cute! I have a backlog of game design books that I picked up from a Humble Book Bundle that I planned to start, but truth be told, I actually ended up napping most of the night which was a huge benefit for being ready for our first events today.
Once we arrived in Paris, I had two tasks to tackle – get to the hotel, and get a SIM card! I had done a bit of investigation before arriving, and it turns out that you can buy a 10GB data plan for 39.99 Euro right at the arrivals level when getting to Charles De Gaulle. Even though I’ll only be here for a couple of days, I find that having a data plan for the time I’m abroad puts my mind at ease and makes me feel immediately more settled.
Our hotel is located in the heart of the city (and has plenty of space to work in as a little home away from home for a few days!) but I wasn’t there for too long before heading off to a Viva Tech influencer dinner at Le Drugstore, right on the Champs Elysee near the Arc De Triomphe! It was a great opportunity to meet other key technologists from around the world and reconnect with some folks from last year.
Tomorrow’s conference kicks off with an opening by Emmanuel Macron, the President of France, and is followed by some really great speakers throughout the day on the main stage, smaller talks on more focused technologies, and, of course, the chance to explore a huge expo hall filled with booths from large, established technology companies and small startups.
I’m hoping to get a chance to hear some of the keynote speakers talk about privacy and protections that we as an industry need to prioritize in our implementation, and want to try out some of the virtual reality exhibits that are out on the floor. Last year’s exhibitors didn’t disappoint and I’m sure that this year will be equally inspiring across all intersections of technology and business.