Welcome to the AIN conference, we have no idea what this conference will be about - let's make it up.
There is a little more too it than that, but that is what this conference is. It is an improvised conference. The participants create deliver and participate in the program but it is made up each day. We all knew ahead of time and people still prepared material to present, but there was no official program schedule created.
The concept is structured and has rules and is called Open Space. It is based on the idea that the best part of many conferences is the coffee breaks where great conversations take place and tries to make the conference all coffee breaks.
It is particularly intriguing for improvisers who love to life in the moment and create on the fly. There can be a slight downside in that it can tend to have a lack of flow in some sessions because the prep work is not there, but it can also be inspirational and capture what is current and interesting to many people.
And, if it's not good - the law of two feet requires that you get up and leave if you feel like you don't want to be there anymore. So the social contract of not being rude by leaving the middle is changed. It can be a big relief when it's just nor for you.
So, would you come to a conference if you knew there was no program?