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Yesterday saw my first conscious visit to [create Zurich], the city (as opposed to Zurich, the airport). Snowfall sure makes for pretty old towns - unfortunately one can't claim the same for drives home through Arlberg terrain, but then, I've been warned.
The reason for the visit in Switzerland was a meeting between smi and RaphaŽl Szwarc to which I was fortunate enough to have been invited as well. RaphaŽl is the prime mover behind ZOň, the smash hit Email search, slice and dice engine. (Aside: When RaphaŽl pointed out that we were just walking by Google's Zurich offices, I remembered how when Gmail was first announced, I imagined it would work exactly like ZOň - like a Wiki for your Email, a "surfable inbox", the ultimate hypertextifier. Off by a long shot.)
RaphaŽl is currently working on a seriously non-intrusive groupware system called ZAPPATA (how it works); indeed, non-intrusiveness was one of the major themes of the afternoon/evening - quietly sitting in the middle, watching behaviour and then applying some heuristics to infer structures of collaboration and weights of importance sounds like a great approach.
I won't even try to write down all the ideas & impressions still hovering through my mind a day later, just a few quick notes ffr/.
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