O’Reilly, MAKE’s original parent company, has announced Solid, a hardware and software conference to be held next May in San Francisco. It’s headed up by MIT’s Joi Ito and looks pretty cool:
Physical things—machines, devices, components—are about to experience a profound transformation. The Internet fundamentally changed how software is developed and deployed, and now hardware is on the brink of a similar disruption. Consumers, already carrying smart phones and driving cars that park themselves, have come to demand more from their objects than ever before. They expect their belongings to “know” them, to interact with them, and to adapt to their needs. Industry is realizing that smart, networked machines can bring them the efficiencies and new capabilities to do more, faster and cheaper. Devices from thermostats to jet engines that were once strictly mechanical are now seamless blends of hardware and software—packages of microcontrollers, sensors, and, above all, networked software that can ingest lots of data, understand context, and make intelligent decisions. Hardware and software are fusing into a single fluid entity.
That intersection, which the sites call fluidware, is the focus of the conference. If you’re interested in participating as a speaker, Solid has released a Call for Participation that expires December 9th. If you’re a student or independent hacker, Solid also has fellowships available to help with travel expenses.