On March 29th and 30th, I attended InterChange 2014, STC New England’s annual conference at the UMass Lowell conference center in Lowell, Massachusetts. It’s my first time presenting at a local chapter conference and I’m so excited about the opportunity. My goal for the day is to break as few things as possible and impersonate a grownup.
I’m so excited about the day, I even found the iron in the closet of my room at the Conference Center.
I ironed my shirt and drank all the self-serve coffee in the room. Then I went out in the lobby for more coffee. Thank you to UMass for all this awesome coffee.
I found makeup in my purse and put some on my face, mostly hitting the target, but very out of practice.
The wonderful UMass conference center staff were in the room bright and early and let me use the remote control for the laptop. It has a laser pointer on top, which I thought was just too cool.
Social Media Success Stories!
The talk begins and I’m having fun. Social media is one of my favorite topics and the story we’re telling today has a happy ending as I used some fun graphics and memes in Facebook to spread the word about an event for my church.
We start out with a serious discussion about EdgeRank, the algorithm Facebook uses to figure out what it will show and what it will hide in your NewsFeed. We start out all brainy, defining parameters and using big math concepts long dormant to discuss how to use the process to our advantage.
Then the fun begins and we look at the silly graphics and memes.
Lots of nice folks showed up for the presentation. These folks are so smart and asked great questions. Some of them told great stories about their own social media journey.
When the presentation was just about over, we gathered for a group photo as a way of saying thanks to Adobe for their generous sponsorship of the conference.
Many thanks to Rick Lippincott for all the photos of the conference. Be sure to check out his flickr photostream.
And I didn’t break anything. Goal accomplished!
I posted the slides online, so have a look for yourself.
Communicating with the Audiences of the Future
Creating Accessible Documents with Microsoft Word
Char James-Tanny is one of my tech comm heros. I am so star struck when I’m around her. She spoke about accessibility, specifically relating to Word, and also in general everyday life. She is knowledgeable and generous with her knowledge. She is well respected in our field. She has purple hair. I ask for a picture of us together.
Closing Speech & Raffle
At the end of the conference, we all gathered for a closing speech by Rick Lippincott about “Looking Backward” and gave a fun history of technical communication throughout history. Rick, if you’re reading this, please share your slides. I want to steal some of your ideas.
Then STC New England chapter president Emily Alfson and VP Nancy Allison draw tickets for the raffle. I didn’t win but it was fun to be a part of seeing others win.
We did not start out to eat sushi again after the conference. We tried to go to several other places but none of them were open on a Sunday afternoon. I was secretly hoping that we could have sushi. The conference center did not start serving dinner until 4:30 and we were hungry at 3:30. I was secretly hoping that we could have sushi. The Irish Pub was closed. I was secretly hoping that we could have sushi. Another pub down the street was also closed. Dunkin Donuts was open. I was secretly hoping that we could have sushi.
We had dinner at Etsogo Sushi and Asian Restaurant. Again. Yay.
The conference is over but we’re staying in town for a day of site seeing. More about that on Day Four.