A reader suggested I try to summarize the key themes from this year's Idea City. I could hardly lay claim to customer experience expertise and fail to respond to readers, now could I? So here are my big takeaways, along with what I think this means for marketers and those who create customer experiences. [And thanks for the suggestion, Estaban.]
 The information technology curve is not linear, it's exponential. It is still picking up speed.
This might sound pretty pedestrian at the outset, but it isn't. Exponential curves tend to look slower in the beginning and faster later on. We've seen this many times in terms of adoption rates, improvement in technology performance, total production of information in a year, etcetera. [Example: for a long time, people thought there was no role for computers in the home. Now we have computers everywhere.And we keep finding new places to put them.]
What I learned at Idea City was that human biology has been treated somewhat mechanistically in the past. Now it is being treated -- by scientists -- as an information system. So things like medical research and commercialization of that learning will now start to follow this pattern.
There are many societal implications of this, but I see a number for marketers and customer experience folk as well. One is that social networking applications are going to just get better and better. It is not a passing fad. The future might not be Facebook, but clearly we like the possibilities of connecting virtually. Whatever clunkiness exists will disappear. There is not going to be an easier time to get in the game and start the organizational learning process. Further delays will only leave you behind the curve.
 People are going to start living a lot longer, and this is going to happen faster than we expected
Boomers have no plans to fade into the sunset. We can already see the impact of this. But science seems to be on the verge of really making an impact on aging.
If we get longer lives with reasonable health -- say the health and vitality of a fifty-year-old into our nineties -- every institution, public and private, is going to be affected. Most of the speakers focused on the science that is going to make this happen. A few touched on the implications for public policy, like pensions. But the impacts will be pervasive.
 There are no rules
People who make big advances in any field are the ones who ignore the conventional wisdom. Jun Ye, the builder of an atomic clock that ticks 430 trillion times per second said this: "At the edge of the universe, you are looking at the universe that was just formed. At the beginning of the universe, physical laws could not all be the same as they are today". So even the laws of physics may not be immutable.
If you want to do something in your business that is exceptional, you need to extract the conventional from your thinking.
 Teaching is not as interesting as sharing the experience of passion. Humor is also highly engaging.
The best speakers are always those that just talk about what they are interested in and do it in a way that the foundational knowledge for their field does not become a barrier. They tell stories. They talk about implications. And they make people laugh. They are not all serious.
If scientists can be this interesting, surely we can do better in our customer communications: stop being so serious; tell more stories; and show some passion for the content.