I have spent my nights this week getting prepared for TOC 2011. This doesn’t mean that I’ve put together a demo or a presentation of any kind, or that I’ve set up power breakfasts with the deal makers of New York. All I’ve done is go to an event every night this week to get my mind ready for the intake of ideas on emerging technology, trends and opportunities.
I always have an eye to the publishing world whenever I attend events like Mobile Mondays, Ignite or DemoCamps so I will share a few things I took away from these three events this week.
At Mobile Monday, at the Mars Center, Krista Napier of IDC talked about tablets, what has happened and what’s going to happen. Apparently tablets are big—who knew? They’re big and getting bigger, with more players coming online including RIM’s Playbook. One thing you may find intriguing is that according to the analyst from IDC, tablet sales have not cannibalized dedicated ereader sales. The presenter gave an anecdote from her own experience of tablets vs. ereaders. Even though she had an ipad she had to buy an ereader because the glare on the iPad gave her headaches. And luckily the price point was right. So owning a tablet does not exclude owning an ereader.
Michael Urlocker who is a technology hardware analyst with GMP Securities L.P. provided another great insight. His presentation highlighted technology sectors that seem to be stable but suddenly get disrupted when new players enter the market and kill price. One of his examples looked at the video game app market and how prices fell for game apps when a video game maker entered the app market just to show they could build them too. Their business model was different so boom went the dynamite! I think we all know how that applies to publishing.
The Ignite conference in Waterloo took place in the newly renovated Tannery building where Google has set up shop. I love Ignite. 5 minute presentations, 15 seconds per slide, any topic—Go! If the topic isn’t up your alley don’t worry; it’s only 5 minutes long. One of the presenters on Tuesday night was graphic novelist Scott Chantler. Scott talked about his grandfather and how he came to write about him in his bestselling book Two Generals. The take away here is that if you are an author think about Ignite as a platform. Scott endeared himself to a new audience (the tweets during his presentation all indicated people’s desire to get a copy of his book)—and then he sold books at the event! Brilliant! People loved hearing about his creative approach and how his story unfolded. All done in 5 minutes!
And finally DemoCampGuelph. I have been to a number of DemoCamps but this one is near and dear to my heart since it is 5 minutes walking distance from my home, at the Bookshelf. At DemoCamps, you get to meet the makers and the doers and you get early bird glimpses of their products. The fact that it was at the Bookshelf is significant. Here is a venue going outside of the box to be the hub of the community. Not an author signing or reading, but still an important demographic meeting under your roof. It would behoove the Bookshelf to be more involved in this event instead of just letting the organizers run the show. The room was packed and people were making announcements throughout the night. If you want to tap into the tech community then get out there and find out where they are going and, oh yeah, don’t forget to mention your author events that are coming up, maybe run a survey past them about their reading habits?