You know Real Networks, right? Real Player, Real Media, etc. Well in 2000, I went to their conference in San Jose. I came home with more free shit than I could stuff in my suitcase, mostly t-shirts from dotcoms who are probably dead and gone now. They threw the biggest damn party I've ever been to, and the freaking FOO FIGHTERS played at it.
Yesterday most of the booths who were giving anything away were giving away miniature Hersheys and Snickers and crap.
Now I don't expect a tech conference today to be on a level with one given by a leading software company during the dotcom boom, but the discrepancy was disproportional. There were maybe 30 booths set up, MAYBE. And very few companies that were not local. I realize the technology market is in a bad state right now, but there is still a demand for technology. There is still a need for it, and it is still advancing. This conference in Kansas City or Dallas or Denver, even though those are not your Silicon Valleys or your Northern Virginia AOL territories, would have been much much bigger. It just lends another bit of credibility to my proposed slogan for our fair city: "Wichita, the city that tries."
In other news, Schlotzky's cracked pepper potato chips are the ish.