RE: Chicago Conference (STC): how good? How to plan!

Subject: RE: Chicago Conference (STC): how good? How to plan!
From: KMcLauchlan -at- chrysalis-its -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 26 Mar 2001 09:46:34 -0500

> jkajpust wonders: <<Never have been to something like this
> before, I may be
> asking a naive question, but how good are the seminars that
> go on during
> the conference. I'm thinking about going, but since I have to
> pay my way,
> I'm concerned about what I'll get out of it.>>

I'm going to pass on the STC gig this year (so I can get
the Framers conference paid by my employer, instead), but
I'll probably go again next year.

My suggestion echoes Geoff's:

Try to work out a plan of attack beforehand, based on
a) the info the conference organizers send to you and,
b) the comments of this group, who might sway you toward
or away from some presentations...

If you have your schedule mostly worked out, you have
that much less to fret about when you arrive, and
you have that much more time for schmoozing and for
getting the most out of the sessions... and maybe the
exhibit floor.

However... (yes, there had to be a however) I suggest
that you line up a first AND second choice for each
time-slot, where possible.

By having a second choice figured out, you are prepared
when one of two unfortunate things happen:

a) you arrive at your most-anticipated session, only to
find that it was everybody else's "most-anticipated"
as well, and that they've already closed the doors
on a packed hall... damnit!

b) five minutes (or less...) into a presentation, you
discover that it's not at all what you wanted, or that
the speaker is stultifyingly boring ... or doesn't
know how to use a microphone... or has excruciating
public-speaking/mumbling skills or...

In either case, you have a second option lined up,
including a route plotted, so you can sprint to
another hall/room and get something useful from that
block of time.

If you haven't planned it out, you waste half the
session fumbling through the conference package,
trying to find an interesting post-last-minute

Some might suggest that you can just turn away from
the overbooked room and spend the next hour checking
out the booths on the exhibit floor. However, if it
isn't organized better than last year, you'll find
the exhibit hall just closed, not-yet-open, or shut
down and packed away two days before the end of the

Anyway, it should be worth the trip. Enjoy.



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