As a fan I can tell you it was an SF-Fan’s dream come true to meet, in the flesh, so many SF-writers and so many Icarii, as well as the Heart & Mind of the TZF. People I met, for the first time, but have corresponded with for a while…
(1) Paul Gilster & Marc Millis, the guys who set the train in motion some years ago
(2) The Icarus Interstellar Board
(3) wide Team Icarus
(4) The Benford Twins
(5) my co-author, Gerald Nordley, and perhaps the best ultra-hard SF writer I know.
(6) Athena Andreadis, molecular biologist and SF thinker
(7) John Cramer, author of “Analog’s” ‘The Alternate View’ and physicist
(8) Jack Sarfatti, the Showman of Speculative Physics
Others I met/heard who maybe aren’t so well-known, but may prove influential in times to come. Such as Young K. Bae, laser propulsion research and inventor of the Photonic Thruster (a very clever multi-bounce photon-propulsion system.) Mark Edwards, of Green Independence, who might have a way of feeding Starship Crews and the whole of Starship Earth.
s – David Nyeland gave a us BIG hint on how to launch a Starship in 100 years… reach out to EVERYONE.