SIC 2006 Diary, Day Zero

The Shareware Industry Conference gets underway.

Today, the premier conference about marketing software online, the Shareware Industry Conference, got started in Denver, Colorado, with a reception sponsored by Protexis. SIC 2006 officially runs from Thursday, July 13th [tomorrow] through Saturday, July 15th, but with this opening event and a breakfast on Sunday morning, it actually encompasses at least part of five days.

The Shareware Industry Conference is presented by the Shareware Industry Awards Foundation (SIAF), and this is the 16th annual event. The SIAF Board of Directors consists of five people: Michael “Doc” Callahan (Dr. File Finder), Gary Elfring (CD Ship), Harold Holmes (Lincoln Beach Software), Sharon Housley (NotePage), and Paris Karahalios (TRIUS). They put on a great event each year.

I arrived in Denver after 20 hours of driving, straight through, with my wife/partner and our two kids. We could have (possibly) made it a couple hours sooner, but toward the end of the journey we were stopping frequently in order to keep our circulation active (and my eyes open). The timing was just about perfect, as we checked in at the hotel immediately and had enough time for a nice lunch before registration (foregoing a nap).

Registration went fairly smoothly, despite a small, yet amusing, communication problem caused no doubt by my lack of sleep. We received our badges and “goody bags” and proceeded to our hotel room for much-needed showers. Getting registered before the conference officially begins is always more convenient, and it is especially nice when everybody at the desk knows you and has your stuff ready before you get there.

At the reception, we spoke with many friends and acquaintances (some call it “networking”) and generally had a good time. Protexis was a good host, allowing everybody a forum in which to actually talk, with good food, and at least in my case, ample drink tickets. I also got to meet for the first time, in person, a few online acquaintances: Dan Hite (Auction Sentry), Jean Cyr (Dillobits Software), and Association of Shareware Professionals Director Henk Devos (Whirling Dervishes), who made the trip over from Belgium. As usual, I ended up talking with somebody (Henk, in this case) until we were last ones at the party.

The SIC is truly underway now. I am looking forward to the whole conference, and am especially anticipating my presentation (Practical Interface Guidelines: Things they did not teach us in programming class) on Friday and the Shareware Industry Awards Banquet on Saturday night, when Pretty Good Solitaire is nominated for an SIA in the ‘Best Non-Action Game’ category.

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