So last week was when we went to the first every conference of our lives, the unfortunate part of it was that it was a Mac conference, a platform which I have little or no respect for, but there you go.
It started as all of our little outings do – too god damn early, and also as normal as the familiar trip to Tesco’s on a Tuesday in the early hours there were unexpected hitches. Along with the long list of things that I am good at it seems being an alarm clock is now one of them, kudos goes out to Shane for managing to break the world record for the shortest amount of time to get ready (roughly about 4 minutes I believe) apparently I was his alarm clock when I phoned him to see why he was 5 minutes late for our early morning stairway rendezvous.
We got the train from Surbiton to Waterloo, once we arrived we then transferred to the underground where I had the urge to play the London Underground song over the tannoy and receive grateful applause from the teeming crowds of people in the metal tube they call a tube train, but I didn’t, it was a tough decision though.
When we got to the Olympia National Hall we had to queue for a bit (as we British are experienced at doing). Once inside we were greeted with a most spectacular of sites, the site of lots and lots of free stuff – oh and of course lots of technical demos and marketing gimmicks. Among some of the companies that were there were Apple (of course), HP, Microsoft (yes I did say Microsoft), BMW (don’t ask), Adobe, Quark and a load more that I can’t remember at the moment.
For the next few hours we spent our time walking around and trying to get all of the free stuff we could.
When we got to the Quark stand, we were pounced upon by what can only be described as the best ever PR woman in the world she wanted to enter us into a free prize draw thing so we could win some prize or other, I’ve forgotten what it was now, perhaps someone could refresh my memory just in case I am lucky enough to win it, then we went and watched a Quark 6.5 Tips and Tricks session (bearing in mind we hadn’t used the application before and to be honest didn’t really car), the presenter was actually quite good, but kept hammering the “So the designers wont come to you with an axe and try to kill you” line, the first time it was funny, but after that it just wasn’t, so after the session we were given a Quark neck band, and just as we were going to leave, the wonderful PR woman came over and started talking again, to cut a rather long story short, we ended up with a Quark T-Shirt and stress ball as well, so now we can wear them and look like we are Quark employees, but on a more serious note I want to recommend Quark just because of the woman who gave us the free stuff. Who says marketing doesn’t pay.
The Quark Stand, complete with the guy who kept saying that designers would come after us with an axe if we changed their images
Here are some of the things that we saw while we were walking around:
The Microsoft Office for Mac Stand
Who would have guessed it, Microsoft at a Mac conference, the only thing was that they weren’t giving away any free stuff
Apple IPod Video
Launched just a few days before, here is the new iPod Video that Apple have released, I must admit, it looks nice, but the screen is just too small, and there are better alternatives on the market, yet I’m sure that for some reason everyone will go out and buy one, even if it is more inferior than some of the others around.
Here was a technical talk about the iPod and instructions on how to download video and music to it, more of a beginners talk than anything else, although they did show how the iPod has evolved over the years.
Apparently 1 company had too much money spare and decided to buy a Lamborghini and put it in a conference centre
Apple XServe Servers
Not a lot to say here, just lots of blinky lights….
Dual Screen G5
I don’t care what platform it is….I want those screens
Digital Video Editing Suite
There’s one thing to be said about Macs, they have the design down to a fine art, this machine was demoing Aperture I believe, a new editing suite or something
Sony HD Video Camera
There are so many things that I wanted, and this is one of them, I don’t know why it was there, probably just a showcase thing, but it just looks so amazing
Just a photo of the Sony Stand, to the left is the HD cam
Here is where the happiness ends, we left after about 2 hours of walking around and decided to go around London for a while, and I will post some photos of that in a few days 🙂