Ignite is the name for a particular type of event that is held throughout the world—organized by volunteers—at which participants speak about their ideas and personal or professional passions according to a specific format. The event holds the motto, “Enlighten us, but make it quick!” Anyone can throw an Ignite event. The presentations are meant to "ignite" the audience on a subject, whereby awareness, thought, and action are generated on the subjects presented. The largest Ignite event to date is Ignite Boulder 11, which attracted 1,350 attendees on June 24, 2010.
Ignite is a presentation format that is shorter than the Pecha Kucha format, a presentation style in which 20 slides are shown for 21 seconds each, but longer than lightning talks, which are short presentations from five to 10 minutes in length. At an Ignite event, each speaker has a time limit of five minutes, and must use 20 slides with each slide advancing automatically after 15 seconds. This forces speakers to maintain a rapid pace. At a just-comprehensible clip of 160 words a minute, Ignite speakers can utter about 40 words per slide, making a total of 800 words for the complete talk.
Speakers are screened, which keeps the quality high enough to draw a “geeky-creative-techy-designer-startup kind of crowd”.
The first Ignite was held in 2006 in Seattle, Washington, United States (US), and was the brainchild of Brady Forrest and Bre Pettis. It was sponsored by O'Reilly Media and MAKE magazine and they continue to be the main sponsors. The event mirrors the open-minded attitude of its founders Pettis and Forrest, although O’Reilly Media has since taken responsibility over the operation.
Ignite has held over 408 events spanning in 100 countries since its creation in 2006, many of which were supported by O’Reilly Media. O’Reilly even held an Ignite event at a company Open Source Convention in 2009.
Each Ignite is independently organized at the local level. Ignite events are often free to attend and may be supported financially by sponsorship
Ignite is not only supported by major initial contributors but also by free sponsorship organized at the local level.
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