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Seattle: Annual Summit Annual Summit lured 5,200 professionals to Seattle for the Summit, an event specifically for digital and multichannel retailers. They were there to get the rush of discovering new ideas, getting actionable takeaways, and building relationships with the brightest and most innovative players in the digital retail world.  The Digital Retail Boot Camp was a one-day, rigorous hands-on workshop designed with the entry- to intermediate-level manager in mind. The big idea was to jump-start online initiatives. New managers were able get up to speed, and more experienced managers could focus on the fundamentals.  On hand were more than 280 solution providers ready to demo and discuss the latest solutions to online retail problems — whoops, we meant opportunities.  Once you found what you were looking for, all you had to do was “add to cart”, then “go to checkout”….  Don’t worry, the summit made sure everything “checked out”…  #shoporg14

Seattle: National Association of College/Univ. Business Officers – NACUBO

The NACUBO acronym designates the National Association of College and University Business Officers, a membership organization representing more than 2,500 colleges, universities, and higher education service providers across the country and around the world. NACUBO specifically represents chief business and financial officers through advocacy efforts, community service, and professional development activities.  Sessions included Tips for Business Partners Working with Higher Education Institutions, Achieving Institutional Effectiveness through Data-Driven Decision-Making, Academic Medical Centers in a Rapidly-Changing Environment, and… wait, what’s this?  Yup, an opener session entitled What Is This Thing Called Higher Education?  Hmmm…. that’s a little like offering a special tutorial for those who attended the NACUBO Golf Tournament, entitled What Is This Thing Called A Golf Ball?  Hey, we’re just saying…

Seattle: Specialty Coffee Conference & Exhibition

The Specialty Coffee Conference & Exhibition came back to its industry’s roots in Seattle.  Back in 1971, Starbucks was a single store in Seattle’s historic Pike Place Market. The Starbucks name, we learn, was inspired by Moby Dick, and “evoked the romance of the high seas and the seafaring tradition of the early coffee traders”.   From just a narrow shop front, Starbucks offered fresh-roasted whole-bean coffees, and started putting in hazelnut syrup and the like. The six-dollar cup of coffee was born.  Now the SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) is there to bring the whole amazing story up to date.  Do they still talk about Moby Dick?  Well, no, the mythical White Whale has now been replaced on coffee people’s agenda by “Plant Pathogen Biology: Rust and Beetles and Borers, Oh My!”, a conference session that got delegates plenty scared.  Oh, look, your hands are shaking so much you just spilled your coffee down your shirt….

Seattle: Northwest Foodservice Show

The show is billed as the largest food and beverage expo in the Pacific Northwest, and thousands of restaurant and foodservice industry professionals were in attendance to expand their knowledge at educational seminars, sample delicious new products, and find inspiring ideas to enhance their businesses. Topics discussed included operations, food cost, labor cost, available labor force, the diversifying of food, and the importance of branding and marketing.  Speakers noted that just about every aspect of the food industry has been changing. Delegates could talk to more than 400 vendors at the show and learn how they could help to lower costs, improve margins and make life generally easier.   Big draws included the Interactive Kitchen (“watch, learn, sample…”), the New Product Showcase, the Technology Pavilion and the Tasting Pavilion.  So, um, what exactly does technology taste like…?  #nwfoodshow

Seattle: IMS 13

June 2-7, 2013. IMS is the International Microwave Symposium is billed as the premier annual international meeting for technologists involved in all aspects of microwave theory and practice. It consisted of a full week of events, including technical paper presentations, workshops, and tutorials, as well as a program of social events. The IEEE MTT-S Microwave Week encompassed several conferences that found themselves co-located at the same venues. Besides the flagship IMS Conference, Microwave Week hosted the IEEE RFIC and ARFTG conferences. The symposium also mounted a sizeable commercial exhibition, organized by MP Associates.  IMS2013 offered technical sessions, interactive forums, plenary and panel sessions, workshops, short courses, industrial exhibits, application seminars, historical exhibits, and a wide array of other technical and social activities.  Now, if my microwave oven is X, and this English muffin is Y, what’s the formula for breakfast…?

Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (SDMS)

Sept. 20-23, 2012. SDMS is the Society of Diagnostic Medical Sonography, and their expo and convention goes by the name of Scanning Seattle.  Scanning Seattle for what, exactly?  Well, all kinds of things, including healthcare providers involved in the practice of sonography, sonography education or clinical management;  businesses who manufacture or sell ultrasound equipment or accessories;  continuing education providers; recruiters, and institutions providing sonography-related education and training.  Delegates would typically be a sonographer, educator, or commercial representative.  Sonographers have to stay healthy themselves, of course.  Need information about preventing work-related musculoskeletal disorders? SDMS provides its members with resources needed to protect themselves from work-related injuries. Ultrasound has to be ultrasafe…