Forgive a few days without a post. I’ve been in Miami since Saturday, and weather-wise, it’s been a most welcome respite from the freezing cold a/k/a the earliest snowfall Chicago has EVER seen — and that’s in more than 120 years of reporting the weather, according to my friend and WGN-TV Weatherman Tom Skilling.

I’m here because Inman News Service is putting on a real estate meets technology conference focusing on high-net worth buyers, and the agents who assist them in purchasing their palatial estates.

(An aside — Saturday night I ate at what may be one of the country’s best restaurants — and certainly one of the best NEW restaurants: Karu. It’s located at the brand new Performing Arts Center. What a scene: Bread and circuses 25/25. Call ahead for reservations.)

This afternoon, we heard from Frank McKinney, who is currently building a $135 million home ($165 million if you include two side parcels of vacant land for $15 million each that area adjacent to the property) in south Florida. Who would buy such a property? He told a group of 350+ brokers and lenders that he typically sells his properties in 54 days or less. He’s only had one property on the market for 18 months.

“It’s an impulse buy,” he says, noting that his buyers typically decide on a Tuesday to buy a $25 million dollar oceanfront home and then move in four days later.

That’s some impulse.

I think the most fun I’ve had at one of these conferences I’ve been attending happened this morning with Michael Tchong ( talked about trends of the future. I learned that “blirting” is flirting with your blackberry, or crackberry as we often call it. We want to be totally connected all the time and yet we want to be wireless and “free” Michael says. Watch for more details of his talk.

Tomorrow at 10:30am, I’ll moderate a 2-hour intensive session on VOD (Video on Demand) in which I’ll be talking about how to look good on video on the Internet.

Which we’ll all have to do. Because we’ll all be on all the time, according to Tchong.

Thanks, YouTube.

Oct. 16, 2006