Monday, July 6, 2009

NECC ’09 Wrap-up, or The last NECC

NECC is no longer, both NECC ‘09 and the term NECC, it will now be known as ISTE, which makes sense as that is the name of the group that puts it on. Was sort of awkward to talk about NECC and ISTE not to mention SIGTC without really confusing people and myself for that matter.

A large time was had by all. I have gotten so that I do not try to get every t-shirt and other do-dad offered by every vendor, I did not get enough pens, as this is where I usually stock up on pens. I really had two things to look for on the exhibit floor and I found them, which is good. I lusted after some cameras, but I always do. My camera is on its deathbed, so a new one would be nice, but not in the $2000 range.
The sessions were good; I did not leave any of them. Learned some stuff too. Meeting people is always a highlight, and meeting up with my PLN from Plurk is always good. Nice to meet the faces you write to almost daily. The blogger’s café, as last year was a nice place to visit and network. Last year it was located in a corner of the convention hall, so it was a comfortable space, this year it was in a T intersection of the hall, making it loud and chaotic during session changes.

Places to plug in laptops are always at a premium, with this being no exception. I brought a power strip; we could share somewhat meager resources for power. The convention center did have some extra power cords run to some tables, which was a good thing.

Every year there is an issue with the wireless network. When I was in a ‘bring your own laptop’ session it was down, sort of makes the point of the workshop ironic. There were occasional outages, given that this is supposed to be one of the largest technology conferences, one would hope the network could handle it. It was better than before, but needs to be much better.

I met a person from Diigo, a social book-marking site which I use. We had a few good conversations, and I hope to work with this group in the next few months as they refine their offerings for education.

Had a magazine person ask if I do some writing, and will be in contact with them over the next few weeks. If anyone actually reads this, they may wonder what the publication could posssibley be thinking. But what the heck, I am just a charming guy.

Now the president elect for SIGTC, see how that goes. In two years, when I am supposed to be president, older son graduates from HS. Which do I do ISTE or graduation? I was going to give up on doing SIGTC board work, after several years, but what the heck, might as well do this. It means free ISTE meetings for a couple of years. I already am a session review chair, so that I get registration paid for, but this will cover some hotel and transportation.

Washington hotels are very expensive, as are most hotels near conference sites. As it is my employer did not pay for any part of me attending, so I drove down, and slept in the car the first night. I then went to a hotel that is a 5-minute walk from the end of the Metro line, and stayed there. Saved about $100 per night, and it cost about $7 to take the Metro in.

So many other things to think about and do as follow ups to this meeting, and I am looking forward to going to Denver for ISTE 1010.

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