Recently I had the chance to catch up with Michael Hahn at his home in Kansas that he shares with his wife Debbie, their two cats Snowy and Tort, and a dog named Steve. He will be teaching a class at the TC Camp in January, “XML at 15: WTF?”?
Michael is a second generation SGML expert, having learned what he knows from those who created SGML. He was there when XML was born, almost 15 years ago. “The founding principle behind XML was to simplify. We took the lessons we learned from SGML and said ‘We can do this better’.” Over the years, he has taught a hundred courses to a hundred different companies across all vertical markets. He was teaching XML even before it was adopted as a standard. So you could say his teaching XML predates XML.
Why the TC Camp Un-Conference? “I like hearing the sound of my own voice! Seriously, the timing was perfect for this. XML is around the corner from its 15th birthday. I have watched it grow up. It is time to dispel continuing myths and misconceptions. To take a look back. The venue of the Un-Conference was very appealing to me. As a learning venue, it is far more casual “roll up your sleeves” and really learn. I can teach a class dressed in a Tuxedo and Bunny Slippers. The emphasis is on learning and not on trying to sell the attendees something.”
What can attendees expect to gain from attending your class? “Learn to ask the right questions. It’s not about getting all the answers handed to you, it’s about learning how to ask the right questions. Before you can solve a problem, you need to fully understand it and the only way to get to the heart of the matter is to ask the right questions. If I can teach you to hunt at TC Camp, you’ll never go hungry.”
I’ve always enjoyed my conversations with Michael. They are informative while maintaining a high level of enjoyment. Perhaps it is because of how he came to the world of Content creation. His college major was Theater Arts and his minor was in English. He has performed and directed theater plays. He brings this same ease, comfort, and engagement in his interactions with others. As a result, he has very unique and captivating style. Find out by joining his class in January, XML at Fifteen – WTF? Trust me you won’t regret it!
About Michael Hahn. Back when dinosaurs ruled the earth and he was in junior high, Michael Hahn recited “The Duck”, by Ogden Nash, for an English assignment. Many years later this skill came in handy to explain SGML and XML to his mother.
#1 recommendation from the camp counselors? Enroll in one of the morning workshops! The Un-Conference is a learning conference unlike any other. This one is directed by the learners (that would be you!). The TC Camp gives you the opportunity to learn something by offering richly designed morning classes and afternoon free form sessions.
“The best classes I have ever taught are learned by the tribe – when others collaborate”–Michael Hahn
So if you want to maximize your benefit, sign up today for one of the morning sessions before they are all filled up!
#1 recommendation from the camp counselors is to bring a portable. Whether it’s a laptop, tablet, or just your internet-enabled phone, twittering or live-blogging the event helps us all learn together. We can read what other attendees in other sessions are learning and they can read about our discussions.
Check back later…
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This week’s question:
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What word in the English language is always spelled incorrectly?