In celebration for Canada Day, I thought I’d share my thoughts on 2 made-in-Canada entities I feel everyone should know about.

1st item: Podcasters Across Borders 2009 is the TED for podcasting

PAB09 was the best one yet! No surprise as the organizers always put on a fantastic conference encouraging participation and input from audience members during sessions. What I appreciate in PAB is the fact that there are no tracks. No sessions going on in separate rooms bringing up the all-too-familiar schedule conflicts. I would have missed so much if I had missed any of the sessions.

We’re all in one room, wedding style with the law of two feet. So even if you wanted to miss a session, it was ok to do so. But all sessions provided a wealth of inspiration for taking your podcast to the next level.

Not just about your podcast, but what YOU can do to better the world.  We talked about life balance, digital legacy, creativity vs. curiosity, search engines and trust, Masala film making and how we’re all shanachies, to name only a few. Audio recordings of all sessions will be posted in the Canadian Podcast Buffet feed throughout the summer.

The sessions aren’t the only thing that makes PAB PAB. It’s the community. The discussions that take place in the hallway, in the hotel rooms, over meals, even trips to and fro. The PAB community are the best, most supportive, most creative, most inspirational.

2nd item: The Six String Nation Guitar

Award winning radio documentary maker, Jowi Taylor gave the keynote. He talked about his inspiring and challenging journey on the creation of the Six String Nation Guitar. Uniting this diverse nation through our collective love for music. Jowi brought the Six String Nation Guitar and attendees were invited to take photos with the guitar as well as play it!

Photo collage of the Six String Nation Guitar by Alexa Clarke

Photo credit by LexnGer

The Six String Nation Guitar Band

After Jowi’s keynote (that is, after the enthusiastic standing ovation), organizers Mark Blevis and Bob Goyetche joined PAB lifer, Jay Moonah on stage playing their guitars (Jay on the Six String Nation Guitar). All attendees singing along. Now THAT’S a community!

PAB will be at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa next year. If you’re into podcasting, social media in general, tech, various geekanalia, then PAB is a MUST. Even if you aren’t in tech. Keep your eye or RSS reader on for future details.

PAB09 was exceptionally special to me as this was the first time I gave a presentation at PAB. Mine was a JOLT!, a 5 minute presentation for inspiring and energizing attendees with new ideas. I talked about the use of social media in the self-help movement which will be very important once the real-time web comes in full force (Twitter, Google Wave, Skype). Thanks to Laurent LaSalle for posting the video of my JOLT!.

P.S. For readers who may not know what TED is, here’s the link.