Top 5 Reasons to Attend IDEAlliance Tech Week

Top Five Reasons Why You Should Attend TechWeek

From March 12-16, the Embassy Suites O’Hare Hotel in Rosemont, IL, is the site of TechWeek, our week-long event that colocates the G7 Forum (, TechConference 2012 ( and XTech 2012 ( Seminars. TechWeek gives media production professionals the unique opportunity to hear from industry visionaries on G7 implementation, print and digital premedia production, and the latest XML technologies. 

Here’s why TechWeek shouldn’t be missed:

1) You can attend one event, or all three. While the three events each have their specific focus—the G7 Forum brings together hundreds of hundreds of certified G7 Experts and G7 Professionals, and those employed by G7 Master Qualified facilities; TechConference is designed for creative, pre-media, and print production professionals; and XTech Seminars focuses on XML technologies—ultimately, they all examine tools and technologies driving the future of print and digital media production. It’s no surprise that many of our members are interested in all three events.

2) Learn from presentations that deliver practical insights and real-world strategies on the advanced technologies now in play in print and digital media production, XML technologies, and G7 implementation. No matter the event, TechWeek attendees don’t just sit and listen to “experts” at the podium, but are active participants, either through debates during roundtables and presentations or in-depth tutorials.

3) Participate in Learning Labs, The ever-popular labs give attendees access to high-caliber, yet relatively inexpensive, hands-on-training in specific areas of prepress and XML workflows, from an industry expert—either in person or virtually from a Webcast. You can take what you learn from these labs right back to your plant and implement. It’s an amazing opportunity that shouldn’t be missed. 

4) Network, network, network: TechWeek is a great opportunity for industry people to come together and learn from their peers—those who have had proven success implementing G7 methodologies, eMedia workflows, and XML technologies. 

5) Pay for TechConference or XTech, and attend akk events. Full TechConference registration provides attendees with registration to all TechWeek events--with complete access to onsite sessions, tutorials, and labs, as well as meals and networking receptions. Attendees are also given unlimited corporate access to all live virtual sessions and unlimited access to both XTech and TechConference event recordings. That means that while you’re attending a Learning Lab, your peers back at the office can ‘attend” it, too.

Have questions? Call Steve Bonoff (phone) 952.928.7466 or (email) Registration and details can be found at

CES 2012: No News is Good News for Publishers

i M reporting from CES 2012 in Las Vegas.  For publishers, the fact that there is no overpowering new publishing platform announcement from the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show is good news.  Yes, some new tablets were announced.  And there were a few with new (and surprising) display sizes such as the 5 x 5 and the 4 x 4.  But in general, the trend is to add a few new tablet products that can be differentiated by new features or price, but that have little if any impact on the number of new tablet editions that publishers will have to produce.
Also of note is the shift of products classified as eReaders from eInk platforms to multifunctional tablet platforms.  Very few, if any, traditional eInk eReaders were found at CES 2012.  This makes sense because CES is a “new” or “emerging” technology show and eReaders are old news.  Last year IDPF was a CES Partner and hosted an eBook TechZone on the show floor.  This year IDPF was notably absent.  As I perused the booths listed as eReaders, I also asked about the eReader software being employed.  Not one of the booths that I visited boasted EPUB3 support.  I guess we will have to wait for BEA at Javits for announcements of EPUB3 technologies.

Posted in | 0 comments

CES 2012 Day #1

Standing in line at the Las Vegas Monorail as I headed for CES on Jan 10, I lacked the sense of expectation and excitement that I held in 2011.  Perhaps it was because I am no longer a freshman delegate.  Or perhaps it is because this year's offerings generated comparatively little hype about new technology.  Either way, I can report that while there was no earth-shaking new technology unveiled at CES 2012, there were plenty of small gems.

Two descriptors for this years technology showing are:
  • Refinement
  • Hybridization
Unless one is very connected or a diligent researcher and analyst, it is tremendously difficult to track technology trends as the year winds on.  Yet this show snaps its delegates to attention and brings it all together in an environment of almost hyper-overload that enables me to formulate a thoughtful and considered technology snapshot to drive my strategies throughout the year.

My picks of this show, no matter the importance for publishers, were Google TV and the new Pixel Qi (pronounced "chi") display technology.  And of course, who can ignore the Plustek mouse shapped like a Porsche 911, the Koala computer speakers or the glam, bling cases for the iPhone 4S?
Now I need to get serious about reporting the impact of today's newest consumer electronics on the publishing environment!

Posted in | 0 comments

CES 2012, Here I Come!

i M here in Las Vegas, in my room in Bally's, getting prepared for my annual CES adventure.  As an alumnus, I have many valuable lessons-learned for attending this show.  This year the name of the show has officially changed to be “International” and when you see the crowd journeying here for the event you can clearly understand why.  All reports indicate that this year the number of visitors will increase from 140K to 150K, so being organized is everything.

Lesson #1:  Book your hotel and air early.  I booked mine back in June 2011 when airfare and hotel rates were reasonable.  Today airfare from Chicago tops $900 and a night at a cheap hotel runs over $400 a night – that is, if you can get a room at all.

Lesson #2:  Register early so you can have a badge mailed to you before you travel.  Last year I had to get a badge when I arrived.  This meant many hours in line, waiting for your registration to be located and a badge printed.  This can account for hours of lost time.

Lesson #3:  Do NOT travel the day before the show opens.  The airport is a zoo!  Flights are completely booked.  Luggage is a huge hassle.  Getting a cab to the strip takes over an hour.  And then when you reach your hotel expect 1 to 2 hours standing in line in the lobby just to check in!

Lesson #4:  Stay at a hotel with monorail access.  The convention center is located on the Las Vegas monorail.  This provides easy access if you are staying at a hotel with monorail access.  If you want to be at the convention center when the show opens, go really early or wait for the opening crowds to wane or once more you can spend hours in line just to get on the monorail.  But when compared to trying to find a taxi and navigating roads completely clogged with visitors, the monorail rocks!

Lesson #5:  Come prepared.  This is not a fashion show, so you should be comfortable.  Shoes that you can walk miles in are key.  Bring band aids!  Even your most reliable soles may begin to pinch and rub after several hours.  Also make sure you pack water, a snack and backup phone batteries.  There are charging stations, so a phone charger is a good idea.

Lesson #6:  Set a plan of attack!  The 2012 International CES will feature more than 2,700 global technology companies unveiling the latest consumer technology products and services across 15 major product categories including the latest in audio, automotive electronics, connected home technologies, digital imaging, electronic gaming, entertainment/content and more.  So know what you want to see and map your course around the expo floor.

Tomorrow the big show opens.  Will report highlights then!

Posted in Labels: , | 0 comments

Next Great Publishing Show? Not so much. . .

i M back in Chicago after attending the first Publishing Xchange Conference.  While I was hoping for a replacement for the late great Seybold Conferences of old, this was not to be.

Publishing Xchange presented two and a half days of cross-media publishing content with an Expo shared between PubX, OnDemand, iTex and info360.  Each of the co-located Questex conferences had a unique focus and taken together filled the DC Convention center. 
·        The AIIM info360 Conference focused on enterprise content and business technology.  Topics such as Business Intelligence, Business Productivity Apps, Cloud Computing, Document Management, Enterprise Content Management, eGov, Knowledge Management and Mobile Content Management were presented.
·        OnDemand focused on digital printing & automated production. It is the largest conference and exposition dedicated to the technologies that personalize, manage, print, and deliver content.
·        iTex, the Imaging Technology, Education & Exposition, is the North American tradeshow for the document imaging technology industry.
·        This year Publishing Xchange was a new addition to the Questex Conference and Expo series.  PubX was an educational event promising to analyze the business opportunity presented for publishers, marketers and digital service providers who possess the understanding and capabilities to serve the multi-media needs in demand today.
Taken together, the content of the combined conferences were bound to touch on one or more “hot buttons” for any attendee.  Sessions I attended were excellent.  But the disappointment was that while Zwang and company provided great educational content, attendance was light.  Perhaps two tracks instead of three might have help concentrate the attendees more evenly.  Many who did attend credited “being local” as their key criteria for selecting this conference to attend.  Whatever the reason for the sparse attendance, I am giving up hope for a resurgence of publishing conferences.  Even with the pressure iPad publishing is creating, distance education and social networking seem to be the learning places for the foreseeable future.
Dianne Kennedy

Posted in | 0 comments

The Next Great Publishing Show??

i M getting ready to pack for the first Publishing Xchange Conference.  Not since the Seybold Conferences of old has there been a great publishing show.  Will this be the one?

Publishing Xchange was the brainstorm of my pal, David Zwang.  David and I have been friends and associates for many years.  It was always his dream to chair a major publishing event.  Then along came the Questex Media Group and the dream became a reality!
The first ever Publishing Xchange Conference will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington DC.  This event is co-located with the Questex OnDemand Conference and Expo March 22-24th.  The focus of Publishing Xchange will be “Cross-Media Publishing and Marketing.”  According to Zwang, “Cross-Media Publishing is no longer an option afforded the ultra-creative.  Today it’s quickly becoming the standard requirement in every vertical market of publishing. The advent of eMedia channels (such as searchable web, tablet, mobile, social media, email, etc.) supplements the demands once dominated by commercial printing. Regardless of whether it is publishing for profit (as in magazines and newspapers) or as a function of marketing and sales support, the need for pinpointed and timely messaging has become mission critical.”
IDEAlliance is a Strategic Partner for this event and we are presenting a track focused on eMedia Publishing.  Content of this track comes from our popular eMedia Professional Training Program and includes "Introduction to eMedia Publishing" by John Parsons, Byte Media, "XML Workflows that Work," by Eric Freese, Aptara, "Disruptive Influences of Workflows and Organizations" by David Zwang and "Standards for Cross-Media Publishing" delivered by yours truly!  I will be reporting from Washington next week.  So stay tuned!
Dianne Kennedy

Posted in | 0 comments

Impact of Technology on the Author

i M listening to the Margaret Atwood Keynote presentation, “The Publishing Pie; An Author’s View,” on YouTube.  Atwood provided a very thoughtful presentation and a complete counterpoint to the excitement about advances in publishing technologies that I usually report on.

This was the best attended session of the Tools of Change Conference in February and certainly one of the highlights of the conference. Ms. Atwood did not speak about or demonstrate any new “wow” technology.  In fact, she marveled that she had been invited to speak at all as she was a mere author and not a technologist.  In contrast to other keynoters, Atwood did not even use PowerPoint slides and had no fancy animations or videos.  Her slides were hand drawn, which made them not only unique, but potentially quite valuable as individual “works of art”.  Atwood took us on a journey through her publishing career and the attrition of the author’s share of the “Publishing Pie”.  She is one of only 10% of authors that make their full time living from writing and that is significant.  According to Atwood, it is difficult to make a living as an author, and getting more difficult each day. 
Atwood’s career began with a single, hand drawn and lettered edition that she created as a child.  By 1961 she had a fairly large “print” run of 220 volumes of poetry that she handset and created the cover using linoblocks.  Her regret is that she hadn’t held on to more of that very limited edition publication, as today each volume is worth quite a pretty penny to collectors.  In those early publishing ventures the author retained the majority of the publishing “pie”.  Atwood went on to discuss the changing business models for book publishing and how that provides (or doesn’t provide) enough “grilled cheese sandwiches” for an author to live on. 

While eBooks are wildly popular, Atwood tells us that authors actually receive far less income from an eBook than they do for the printed edition of the same book.  Will the advancements of reading technologies eventually cut a writer’s income so much that they can no longer survive?  Perhaps the future for authors may be a return to the past where authors make a viable living from small, collectable limited edition print runs.  Alternatives proposed by Atwood included the idea of authors banding together to regain control of their rightful portion of the publishing pie.

Dianne Kennedy

Posted in | 0 comments