Yesterday I attended the SQuADCon 2011 in Denver, and I met Michael Bolton. And you know what, he's a pretty decent guy. Good conversations and debates on some things that have been discussed over on his blog.
Problem was they were impersonable and you couldn't read tone and body language at all. Meeting him face to face now I got a better understanding of him and his views on things, and I hope he did the same with me.
So if you get a chance to talk with him in person I encourage you to do so. Good guy, and fun to talk with one on one.
All the "celebrities" in software testing are really quite engaging and easy to talk with if you catch them at a conference/seminar. Do not hesitate to go up to them and ask them questions or simply tell them you are a blog reader or have read one of their books. Michael, James Bach and Cem Kaner all have their own blogs but they all have written books as well.
Remember though that if you do engage, be prepared to not only ask questions but to answer their questions. James in particular likes to challenge people although my first meeting of Michael at StarWest in 2009 was in the evening at the bar, we're relaxing and he challenges me with a "what is this object in it's final form" and was told to ask as many questions to figure out what the puzzle. It was such a stimulating evening. I had some help from other testers who joined in and then lost interest. But I didn't lose interest simply because I am far too stubborn to let someone else "win". [img]/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img] Our active brain muscles are the most valuable tool we have in our arsenal.
Going out of your comfort zone requires failure. True genius is measured by your recovery.