When I arrived at ROFLCon yesterday, Scumbag Steve and Tron Guy were milling about outside Building 26, chatting and taking pictures with anyone who asked. Tron Guy, of course, was in full character and so too was the degenerate known as Scumbag Steve, asking, “Hey can I ruin that picture,” and pretending to jump in front of the camera when a fan was trying to frame the costumed Tron Guy in his camera. But there was more than just Internet celebrities. There were some really interesting panels, as there will be today as well. All things considered, the day was both weirdly hilarious and quite informing. Here are the 10 most interesting tid bits I picked up from day one at ROFLCon.
10. Scumbag Steve, or, Blake Boston by birth, is actually a pretty nice guy. He’s quite approachable and I feared not for one moment that I was about to have my everything stolen. Walking through the campus, at one point he marveled at the random robot MIT smart people stuff that could be seen through the windows and remarked, “Only at MIT.”
A meme walking through a college campus and talking about robots? Only at MIT indeed.
9. This month marks seven years of Youtube. In case you’re curious, Youtube racks up 4 billion (that’s billion with a B) views a day. In 2011, they racked up 1 trillion views.
8. Imgur, a website I once described to college Greg Gomer as an “oasis in the desert that is the Internet”, sees 500,000 uploaded images a day. They pull in 40 million unique visitors a month and have garnered 2 billion page views per month. Most astonishing, they average 11 pages per visit.
7. ROFLCondoms. Yeah.
6. I don’t think Tron Guy is Tron Guy on the side. I think he’s Tron Guy and once in a while portrays this fictitious fellow known as “Jay Maynard.”
5. The Internet is unpredictable. Kevin Allocca, speaking at the panel “Too Big to Know” about Youtube referred to the elevator niche community on the video sharing website. There is some serious elevator porn on Youtube apparently, videos that show the ins, outs, specs and new technology in elevators around the world. And there’s a built in audience apparently. “Someone will be like, ‘Oh is this the one in the Bank of America Tower?'” Allocca said as a Youtube commenter. Those are “things nobody could have predicted.”
4. And no, seriously, Youtube is effing huge. I don’t know if I conveyed that properly earlier. There is one hour of video footage uploaded every second. Think about that. One. There, I just counted a second.
3. Success Kid has his own t-shirts.
2. Do I seriously now own a ROFLCon III fanny pack? Yes. Yes I do.
1. Slightly more abstract, but the Internet is every bit as important as a tool to pass the time, make us laugh, turn us on and generally fart around as it is to keep us connected and spread knowledge. I learned that there’s nothing wrong with browsing through hundreds of pages of GIFs, memes, silly videos and the like. You might actually be better for it.