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Attendees had the opportunity to attend vendor seminars by Trend Micro, Heritage Makers, Migo Software, Nibbin, AMD, Pinnacle Systems, Data Drive Thru, Marken Communications and User Group Relations. The User Group workshops featured topics such as: Bringing the fun back into user group meetings; How to create a PowerPoint presentation that will wow your UG members; Equipping your user group for meetings; Working with Word - mail merge for labels, invoices and more; Skype - How to get that presentation when others can’t!; a brainstorming session for officers; Hackers: Changing the face of identity theft; Podcasting and Web 2.0; and Contrasting and Comparing Macs and PCs. New this year was the Face of SW Digital Photo Contest conducted by Cathy and George Margolin for their workshop attendees, Digital Photography with the Margolins.
One computer club filled all of their 2008 meeting days with presenters; another group has had a Podcasting presentation; another has used the ID Theft presentation for a meeting and yet another group had a Migo Software (portable USB drive) and Tornado (Data Drive Thru) presentation – all conducted by members using the PPT presentations given at the conference, with highlights from the seminars they attended. It was fun seeing how easy it is to transfer data from one machine to another using Tornado, and my laptop was the host computer for the Migo portable USB drive demo.
These types of member presentations give computer club members not only information about the product but they see that a peer really can use the product. You will find the presentations on the conference Workshop page. Please feel free to use them for one of your meetings. Many other groups have already had presentations by vendors who were at the conference. One group devoted a potluck meeting to having attendees talk about their favorite things at the conference. It was fun reading blurbs about the conference on attendees’ blogs. Other groups had articles in their local newspaper regarding their group attending the conference and members winning prizes in SW’s digital photo contest. All of the pictures entered in SW’s digital photo contest, as well as the winners, may be found by visiting www.swugconf.org and clicking on the Contest button. All of the groups received software from a vendor who asked that they write a review and I’ve seen many reviews in various newsletters.
John Iasiuolo and his staff from the Computer Outlook Radio Talk Show were at the conference and attendees had the opportunity to be interviewed for his show. His Friday night show was broadcast live from the conference and, prior to the vendor faire, many vendors were also interviewed for future shows. John is a big supporter of user groups and features one on his 1st Monday of the month show. I arrange for groups to be on that show, so please let me know if your group would like to participate.
Plans are underway for the 2008 Southwest Computer Conference to be held May 30, 31 and June 1, 2008 at the Town and Country Resort & Convention Center. We hope to see you there!