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

From the blog

Enterprise 2.0 Conference Highlights – Finally, Decent Internet Access

Gran Canaria - In the SpringAs mentioned in yesterday’s blog post, I’m now ready to start sharing with you folks a number of different articles that I have been drafting together over the last few weeks around the topic of some of the major highlights from the recent Enterprise 2.0 conference event I attended in Boston, MA in mid-June. Like I have mentioned elsewhere, this time around, I think I’m going to spread around the various articles, mixing them with some other stuff that has been in my mind lately as well, in order to perhaps try to avoid those massively long posts that I put together in previous years and which eventually were somehow more difficult to read and digest. Hopefully, this time around I may be able to put something together much more dynamic. Let’s see…

Before I get things rolling, I thought I would put together this initial entry though to highlight what, to me, has been one of the absolute major highlights from the entire event to date. One that will surely mark a before and an after this year’s event. One that is surely going to put a whole load of pressure on other technical conferences out there as a living and undeniable proof that it is possible to do it right. It is possible to come up with a strategy to provide what most of us find essential nowadays to try to get the most out of a tech event such as #e2conf. Of course, I am talking about finally being capable of providing, and getting!, some Decent Internet Access for conference attendees.

That’s right! And what an amazing experience that was, wasn’t it? I know that in previous years I have been one of those rather critical, and skeptic, perhaps too critical at times, voices airing out such pet peeve of mine as that one of attending such high profiled technical event expecting to have a good, stable, scalable and reliable wi-fi connection, but year in year out failing to deliver. Well, not this year!

This has been my third year in a row that I have been attending the Enterprise 2.0 event in Boston. And so far it’s been one of the best held thus far, as far as the logistics are concerned; mostly because of having had, throughout the entire week!, a rock solid wi-fi connection throughout the venue of the conference itself; something that last year, for instance, didn’t happen very often, as I mentioned over at Enterprise 2.0 Conference Highlights – A Proposal for DIA.

I think Steve Wylie himself had a rather strong sense of pride, when at the end of the conference he was collecting some great feedback from attendees who were commending, praising and showing off, to some extent, that the wi-fi connection, finally, was just outstanding! I was one of them, too! … I can’t blame him for that sense of pride. I would have, too, if I were him. It was just terrific! Without a single glitch (At least, that I could experiment myself throughout the few days that the event lasted) and rather fast as well!

The best thing about such robust wi-fi connection throughout the event was that, for the first time ever, I had the great opportunity to live tweet the various different keynote and speaker sessions I attended from my own Twitter id: @elsua, helping quite a bit, spread the message around for those folks who were attending live, but in other sessions, or those other people who couldn’t make it to the event altogether, but who were following virtually from the comfort of their remote location(s).

What a blast! The feedback received during the event’s live tweeting I did was wonderful and a clear inspiration for upcoming events! Those live tweets I shared over the course of 3 to 4 days gave me an opportunity, too, to take plenty of live notes about the various different sessions I attended, as well as all of the additional commentary I tried to inject here and there. And, once again, let me tell you, that whole experience of being connected throughout the entire event gave me confidence to come back for more in the near future. And without any frustrations or skepticism. It made such a huge difference! For the better, of course!

A bit over a year ago I put together some sort of a manifesto for Decent Internet Access for tech conference events in general and, in particular for #e2conf; I was rather upset and disappointed that, once again, technology failed us to provide the best of experiences for such events. A year has gone by, another #e2conf has taken place and it is with great pleasure that I can share with you folks over here that yes! it is possible to enjoy such robust DIA without having to suffer too much in the process. This year it was, finally, a dream come true!

And, like I said at the beginning, the pressure is now ON for other tech conference events (Even IBM related ones, like Lotusphere 2011), because if Steve Wylie’s team have managed to make it work for such relevant tech conference, there is no longer an excuse for anyone else that it cannot work altogether. Eric Norlin, from Defrag, kicked things off by proving it is possible to provide such good quality wi-fi experience. The #e2conf conference event folks have not only consolidated such leadership from Defrag, but at the same time they have validated that, after all, if you put together the right level of investment as well as resources, energy, effort, talent, commitment and involvement to make it work, it will eventually do so!

So from here onwards, I just want to share across a big and special Thanks!! to Steve and his team at #e2conf for providing a superb and unsurpassed wi-fi experience throughout. I am really glad it all worked out all right and I can’t wait for the next time that I may be around, because I do know that I would no longer need to worry about a slow, clunky, random, weak connection. Quite the opposite! Raising the bar towards a clear and unprecedented commitment to participants to help enhance their conference attendance providing such stunning connectivity capabilities! Thanks ever so much, Steve! Well done!!

(Next blog post will cover the highlights from the pre-conference event, which, this year, was one of my favourites, compared to previous years, but one step at a time …)

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