E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

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IBM’s 6th iForum: “Capitalising on Innovation” and Why I’m Becoming a Mac Fanboy

As most of you folks already know, I have been back from an incredibly exciting week in Zürich, Switzerland last week, after attending IBM’s 6th iForum about "Capitalising on Innovation" and so far the last couple of days I have been doing some serious catchup on everything that is going on at the moment, both inside and outside of work. That is why I have been quiet over here in the last couple of days. However, not to worry, regular blogging is going to start up again. And I am going to resume those blogging activities by sharing over the course of the next couple of days some of the different insights from the various presentations I attended and several of the different conversations I had during those three days.

Even though I had a very good Internet connection throughout the entire time (For the first time in ages!!!), both at the event and at the hotel, you may be wondering why I didn’t do some live con-blogging, right? Well, there was a reason. I needed to process some of the stuff I was getting exposed to, as I needed to ponder whether the information could be shared both internally or externally. Yes, that is right, some of the materials were of a sensitive nature and as such I could not blog them back then nor will I do it after the event. For those I will put together some sporadic commentary. Also the fact that a bunch of us were closing the hotel bar each night consistently was not helping me much with blogging the event. Yes, I know, it gets down to you, but there is nothing better than some massive face to face social networking, which is what happened during those days. All the time! Just brilliant!

So, while I am finalising the various blog posts I drafted during the conference, I thought I would share with you all next why I gave the title to this blog post the ending of "Why I’m Becoming a Mac Fanboy", just to get you in the mood with some light blogging, before getting into the good stuff!

If you have been following my twitterings previous to the event, you would know how this particular occasion gave me a unique opportunity to take my MacBook Pro for a final test into my full conversion of it as my default work machine. Just before heading over there I was having lots of reservations whether I would be taking it with me or not, but in the end I thought if I was going to become another Mac fanboy I should just put it to the test while on the road.

And I must say that the experience has been incredibly amazing overall! Not only from the fact that in a whole room packed with ThinkPads or Laptops running Windows, there it was, the different one, the weirdo, showing off his MacBook Pro and getting lots of interesting comments, but also from the perspective that throughout the entire time it exceeded my expectations big time!

Roo Reynolds, one of the folks attending (And presenting! More on that later) and very much worth while catching up with, has got the proof of how much I was actually enjoying the experience. That is right, from the very first moment that my MacBook Pro hit the IBM Lab building in Zürich everything run very very smooth. Not a single hiccup to get connected after I got everything sorted out with my own user ID. Everything running all right and lots of commentary on the background 😉

However, the most challenging time of the entire event was when I decided it would be a good time to actually do the presentation on Social Computing @ IBM (More of that shortly, too!), that I was scheduled for on Tuesday afternoon, using my MacBook Pro, instead of the laptop that was set up for the entire event. I wanted to prove a point, which specially had to do with theme of the pitch I was about to deliver and decided to take a bit more of an extreme approach.

Thus within a matter of a couple of minutes I was up and running, projecting my presentation through Keynote (Yes, indeed, Ed Yourdon was just spot on when he said I would be loving Keynote!), using the overhead projector with the remote control that was recognised by the system with a single click and ready to do some hands-on demo while covering the slide deck plus a quick overview of various social computing tools. WOW! Did I want to prove a point or what? I surely did: for most of the stuff that relates to Web 2.0 and Social Computing there is no longer a need to be browser or operating system dependent. Just an Internet connection, your favourite browser and off you go! Ready to rock!

The presentation went rather well, got into a lively discussion and with plenty of different questions. I am sure you would be able to enjoy it. I will be blogging about it over the next day or so, but just wanted to share something else that I did for this particular event and that giving how nicely it worked out I am surely planning on doing it from here onwards.

I decided it was a good opportunity to actually continue making much heavier use of my Nokia N95, so I took it with me and managed to get plenty of different pictures, which so far look rather nice. I have already started uploading a few of them into my Flickr account, but decided to share a couple of thumbnails throughout this blog post as well. Thus no longer a need to take my digital camera with me! (Woohoo!)

Oh, and next to taking some pictures with my N95, there was something else that I managed to do and which I think has worked out really well. And that is the fact that I used the Recorder feature from the phone itself to record the audio from the entire presentation I did on social networking and that way when I am ready to share the slide deck in Slideshare I will be attaching the .mp3 file so that you would be able to follow the slides and the audio of my talk, which I am sure you would find it quite intriguing, specially if you have never listened to me giving a presentation live 😉

And there you have it, the first of a series of blog posts on the recent trip I did to Zürich to attend and present at IBM’s 6th iForum on "Capitalising on Innovation" and having successfully passed the test where I am now officially becoming another Mac Fanboy, because every time I go to the next conference event there will be two essential tools I will bringing with me: my MacBook Pro and my Nokia N95. They have made my job so much easier and so much fun that I am surely looking forward to the time when I can repeat it again! And that opportunity will be sooner than expected…

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