TechEd From the Messaging Perspective. And a Divine Message

TechEd North America 2009 was held May 11-15, 2009, in Los Angeles. We attended:

  • Greatly reduced numbers; perhaps 5,000 people instead of an expected 15,000. No doubt mainly due to widespread corporate cost-cutting. Lotusphere suffered similarly.
  • Many very valuable educational sessions, giving practical as well as planning advice.
  • The exhibition had many vendors of messaging products. Because traffic was light, there was plenty of valuable time available with vendor staff for discussions and demos.
  • Generally, the low attendence enhanced the event. For example, there was more time to talk to people, fewer and shorter lines, and less stress. Not exactly mellow, but a pleasantly relaxed approach to toil.
  • Vendors often commented that the quality of booth visitors was high, despite numbers lower than they’d ideally wish.

Our two days at the show were very worthwhile, especially because of the many conversations we had with vendors about their products. It was nice to attend our collegue David Sengupta’s panel on unified communications.

The highlight for your interlocutor was, however, a matter of faith. America is by far the most religious of all developed economies, and we were fortunate to meet a representative of that rarest of breeds, the terpsichorean theologian. An attractive young lady was permanently stationed outside the press/analyst work room. She was diligently studying a book, so we asked her what she was reading.

In a wholesome, born-again sort of way, she earnestly responded that it was a book about the religious nature of dancing. We commented that this was interesting, since some religious people held that dancing, like music, was a tad sinful. In extreme cases, even worthy of a good smiting. Her immediate response was reassuring and brooked no uncertainty. Dancing isn’t bad; in fact, God invented dancing. An inspiring message for the messaging professional.

David Ferris

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