The Interesting Conferences
That first Interesting seems like ancient history now. It was so long ago that we had to invent - using Yahoo! Pipes or something - a way of doing a twitter backchannel via RSS.
And I'd never done anything like it before. Consequently I worried way too much and did far too many things. We had badges, logos, give-aways, volunteers and all the usual stuff we'd been trained to expect of a conference. In subsequent years I realised those things don't make that much difference, but they demand a lot of extra work.
The eventual formula was simple. Lots of interesting speakers. Short talks. Cheap tickets (but not free). No-one makes any money. Don't really tell anyone what to expect. Somehow this led to the best thing about Interesting - the audience/crowd. They came with hope rather than expectation - and with none of that big conference sense of entitlement. They're what made it any good.