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Boston: Specialty Libraries #SLA2015

SLA stands for the Special Libraries Association. You didn’t have to be wearing heavy horn-rimmed half-moon spectacles to get in, but it certainly helped — the bifocals would have enabled studious delegates to stay focused on what the show had to offer. So what kinds of people would you have been rubbing shoulders with at SLA? Oh, you know the type: Information Professionals, Collections Managers, Research/Intelligence Professionals, Information Center Managers, Knowledge Managers, Web Developers, Information Analysts, Consultants, Content Managers, Educators, Content Rights Managers, Library/Information School Students… all those serious folks who care about “Connecting People and Information”, like it said on the banner over the registration desk. They’re trained in information research, knowledge management, data analysis and presentation, and they know your organization, your market, and your mission. Okay, we’re declaring amnesty on overdue library books all this week… #SLAIETLIP

Conventions: Washington DC: ASAE Springtime Expo 2015

It being Springtime an’ all, we heard that “Inspiration was in full bloom” at ASAE, which has ‘planted’ itself as the largest one-day show in the meetings industry. Spending a whole day with these “blooming lovelies” meant heading back to the office with tangible takeaways that could enhance the digging, plowing, seeding and weeding that’s always involved in meeting planning for the year ahead. Networking flowered with new and familiar colleagues, knowledge was propagated, and hundreds of fabulous destinations, products and services were explored around the expo floor. There were thought-provoking education sessions, including the new Eye Opener Sessions and Learning Labs, focused on meeting planners and event producers from whom to learn and share tips, techniques, and trends. The hall featured more than 340 exhibitors. Drop a seed and watch a flower grow…. #SpringtimeExpo2015

Las Vegas: EXHIBITORlive

Atlanta: CAMEX – National Association of College Stores

CAMEX hosted the National Association of College Stores, or NACS, which is the professional trade association representing the $10 billion collegiate retailing industry. Led by a dedicated group of elected volunteers, NACS serves as the industry’s leading resource and advocate. NACS ensures the health and vitality of higher education retailers through education and research, the provision of critical programs and services, and the development of strategic partnerships that enable members to better serve their customers.  NACS education and professional development opportunities deal with the full spectrum of college store operations, including management, textbooks and course materials, merchandising, financial record-keeping, and more.  Under the broad association umbrella,  Campus Computer Resellers Alliance (CCRA) is a special interest group within NACS that was developed to meet the special needs of computer product resellers that sell principally to students.  Teacher Be Like…. retail it.  #collegestores

San Francisco: Photonics West & BiOS – SPIE

SPIE Photonics West & BiOS?  The BiOS part stands for Biomedical Optics Conference, and this was the #1 laser and photonics conference, fielding 20,000 attendees, two exhibitions, 1,250 exhibiting companies, and 4,700 papers.  Course subjects ranged from core fundamentals in optical & optomechanical design and engineering to intermediate and advanced topics across a wide spectrum of optics and photonics technology.  SPIE provides educational resources to introduce the fascinating and rapidly expanding fields of optics and photonics into the classroom.  Attendees could build on research and theory from the technical conferences with application-focused training, and learn from instructors with deep knowledge and real-world experience in their respective fields.  The Hands-On Optics program brought science education enrichment to thousands of underrepresented middle school students in more than ten states, including female and minority students, who typically have not been the beneficiaries of science and engineering resources and investments.  Optics-wise, a new way of — um — looking at things…  #SPIE

Chicago: American Library Association – Midwinter Meeting – ALA

Winter is for curling up by the fire with a good book, and the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting was all for that, we found.  The ALA Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference are the premier global library events each year, they told us, bringing together newsmakers, innovators, thought leaders, and influencers in the library field from all over the world. Important announcements were made, updates were shared, relevant legislation and policy were addressed, and discussions took place with a major impact on libraries, their role, and their ongoing transformation.  The show provided a dedicated area (the Networking Uncommons space) where delegates could gather in small groups to have a quick meeting, hold impromptu sessions, polish up a presentation, or just recharge batteries. There was even a “Fun With Dick and Jane” session, looking at the works of …wait for it …Jane Austen and Bladerunner’s futuristic creator, Philip K. Dick.  (Dick and Jane, geddit?)   #alamw15

San Diego: American Association of Pharmaceutical Sciences – AAPS

AAPS is the American Association of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and it provides a dynamic international forum for the exchange of knowledge among scientists to enhance their contributions to health, offering timely scientific programs, ongoing education, opportunities for networking and professional development. Founded in 1986, AAPS is an individual membership society of approximately 11,000 pharmaceutical scientists who have joined together to serve the public and their own common professional interests. AAPS is not a trade organization but a nonprofit organization that serves as an educational, scientific, and scholarly body.  AAPS members primarily come from a pharmaceutics, biopharmaceutics, or pharmacy field of study. They also represent scientists from complimentary disciplines such as chemistry, biology, engineering, and medicine, involved in the discovery, development, and manufacture of pharmaceutical products and therapies.  And yes, pharmacology IS a science….  #AAPS2014