WTF Conference in Ireland

A boss I had early in my career was not one prone to long missives or helpful critiques. I would send him reports and analysis and he would send back notes with three letters on it. The three letter were WTF.

I knew his short responses were because he was so busy that he couldn’t even spell it out. I assumed the responses were really questions, like, “What’s this for?” or “Will this fly?” or “Why the face?”. Or, I thought he might be in meetings at the World Trade Federation and he was sending me some kind of shorthand about that since he might not want others to know. I learned that WTF is sort of a question and sort of a statement that requires an exclamation point.

WTF is a sentiment that can capture both being puzzled and frustrated at the same time. That is why I am proposing a WTF Conference in Ireland.

In this conference we would address such pressing algorithmic questions as these:

  • If we have such great universities, why don’t graduates create more companies?
  • If we are so creative and innovative, why aren’t there more entrepreneurs?
  • If the Government is so interested in creating an Innovation Economy, why has it not released funds to create a venture capital infrastructure?
  • If we can create companies, how do we build them for scale?
  • With all the bridges to Silicon Valley now in place, why isn’t there a coordinated effort with all the government agencies?
  • Why don’t we measure companies created as well as jobs created?
  • If an entrepreneur has a great idea, how does it get funded in the middle of all this noise?
  • With the government focused on cost reductions, who is focused on building the economy?

These questions are just the tip of the WTF iceberg.

At the end of the WTF Conference, it would be good to have some answers to these questions. If the answers don’t emerge, I will be scratching my head and asking and saying, WTF.

9 thoughts on “WTF Conference in Ireland

  1. When you realize that you “Don’t want the government’s help at all” you will do much better.  Why let them build an infrastructure that the private sector could do much better.


  2. Wow, maybe we really should have the WTF Conference.  Now that Obama has moved on, we need something to look forward to that provides hope and is creative.  It would be motivating and maybe an Irish baladeer could put it all to a long song.


  3. I love the idea but to be honest I think the questions should be bigger. Anything which is a “This isn’t working –  how can it be better?” issue. Then get a mixture of developers, designers, business people and random passersby to start looking for a solution. 


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