Home / Blog / Oculus Connect 2014 / Sept 18th, 2014 : The Day Before
September 18th, 2014 (the Thursday night before the start of the Oculus Connect Conference, Hollywood CA)
I arrive at Lucky's Tavern on Hollywood Blvd., for the unofficial pre-conference dinner meetup, thinking I was about 40 minutes too early, only to be pleasantly surprised that I am not the only antendee desperately eager to get things started. For the next hour and a half, everything gets off to a great start. I am having a blast meeting fellow VR developers from all corners of the globe, eating and drinking, and generally soaking up the enthusiasim radiating from everyone in attendence. Then I make what turns out to be a huge, and thankfully my only mistake of the whole weekend. I leave the pre-con dinner, with a couple of interpid new found friends, and head over in a rented car to West Hollywood to the Techcrunch Virtual Reality meetup (which unfortunately had been scheduled at the same time as the pre-con dinner). The lure of VR demos, the free open bar, and the idea of doing as many different VR things simultaneously in one night, proved too great. I made promises to return later in the evening, because I was genuinly hesitant to leave, I was having fun here.
It was a bit of an adventure getting from one meetup to the other, considering the close proximity of the venues, however I discovered that general complaints about the traffic and parking problems in LA are not overexagerated. Upon arriving at the Techcrunch VR meetup, we are greeted with a somewhat surreal scene. A luxurious rooftop pool location, absolutely packed with more glamourous and beautiful people than I had ever seen assembled in one location...we had to be in the wrong place. And we were....sort of. Technically, we were in the right place, this was indeed the Techcruch VR meetup, but there seemed be something missing....VR. Now to be fair, I did see at least one person with a DK1 trying to demo to a mostly uninterested crowd, and I also later found that there were several really cool demos all packed into one chaotic overcrowded room (with 1 hour waiting times). Anyway, surrounded by all these seemingly fashoinable/wealthy/gorgeous people, none of whom seemed to be particularly interested in VR, we realized this was not the place for us, and quicky headed back to the pre-con dinner meetup.
Upon our (not very triumphant) return we were genuinley welcomed back at Lucky's Tavern, by our fellow developers, but there was a price to pay for our desertion. In our absence, someone from Oculus VR, showed up, bought everyone a beer, and took a picture. Further more, this picture (without us in it), ended up on the front page of the Oculus VR website. Doh! To try to make amends I quickly bought myself a beer, and I politely insisted on taking another group picture, this time with us in it. You can view the photo here.
At the end of the night, a few of us stayed together and moved on to another bar further down Hollywood blvd (Jamiesons I believe), for more drinks and more VR talk. We (somewhat drunkenly) christened ourselves "the hardcore post 'pre-conference dinner' drinking meetup"....or something. Photo here . Despite wasting about an hour and a half, getting to and from the Techcrunch VR meetup, and missing out being in the pic on the front page of the Oculus website, it was a great night. Thanks again to organizers : Stefan (Belgium) and Charles (USA).