We are now only two and a half months away from the INANE conference in Portland, Maine. All of us on the planning committee are very excited about this conference for many reasons–a major one being that we have accomplished an ambitious goal to have a near-paperless conference! Name tags and signage in the hotel will still be on paper, but that is just about it. We are using a number of interesting innovations and apps to make the conference accessible to everyone but keep the paper to a minimum. For those who are curious:
- Wufoo — an online form builder, Wufoo is powering all the forms on the INANE website, including the registration, case submission, and (upcoming), conference evaluations.
- Guidebook — a mobile app to put the entire conference in the palm of your hand. Guidebook has a new web app, too! Check it out here. If you need the code to view the app, contact Leslie. It is available to registered attendees only.
- WordPress — for our website and blog.
- Stripe — for online, secure credit card processing.
- zKipter — conference check-in via iPads. Wait until you see it in action!
In a significant way, we returned to an early INANE planning process this year. Suzanne Smith, who was actively involved in planning this conference at the early stages, encouraged us to take the process of planning and implementation back to the roots…doing it all ourselves without institutional or corporate partners for planning and implementation. (Note that we are very grateful to our sponsors for their financial support!). Suzanne assured us we could do this because she and Margaret Freda and others had done it before. We took Suzanne’s words to heart and have created this year’s INANE with just the efforts of our planning committee. In other contexts, of course, hosts may want and need various forms of institutional support, but we have now developed valuable tools (many for little or no cost) so that many elements of hosting a conference can be done efficiently and easily by a small group of volunteers.
Underneath this very progressive paperless move, the conference will still “look and feel” very much like INANE conferences of years past. We know how important tradition is to INANE members! There will be lots of time for interaction and socializing, interesting and timely topics in both the general and the break-out sessions, and of course, our annual business meeting–or “non” business meeting, as some of us like to say.
When you combine the use of technologic tools and the internet in place of paper, and the traditional features involved in INANE conferences, what we have for 2014 is a conference that everyone can benefit from and enjoy, even from afar. As you probably already know, this web site shows all of the events that are scheduled at the conference. If you are not able to attend, watch this space for real-time reports from the field! We plan to have on-stie reporters/bloggers who will share what is happening at the conference as it happens. And regardless of where you are, you can comment, send in your questions, suggestions, and ideas that occur to you as you read the reports. And for those who are so inclined, consider this an invitation to serve as a live blogger who will post updates from the conference. If you are interested in doing this–trust me, it’s easy and fun–send a message via the Feedback Page and Leslie or I will get you set up. Thanks in advance!
Our business meeting is one feature that everyone can participate in, even starting right at this moment! Take a minute to review the planned agenda. You can use the comments on the meeting page to share your ideas for discussion. Notice that there is one item on the agenda that is always there…deciding the location of future INANE conferences. If you are inspired to volunteer as a host, let us know. If you have questions about what might be involved before you volunteer, please contact us! We on the 2014 planning group are eager to share our experience and our new-found expertise, and will provide tons of support and ideas. INANE will be in Las Vegas in 2015, and Carolyn Yucha already has a planning committee, the venue, and some preliminary speakers. As is our tradition, Carolyn will be presenting a tantalizing slide show during the closing breakfast on Wednesday August 6th as the official invitation to attend INANE 2015. In 2016 the conference will be in London, and Gary Bell will have a report on the early plans for that conference to share with us in August. It is not too early to start planning for 2017 and 2018 and we will need to decide on locations for those meetings–and maybe even beyond! The earlier you start, the easier it is. Remember, Leslie volunteered Portland as a site at the 2011 meeting in San Francisco.
So regardless of your ability to be “on site” in Maine, let us hear from you! This is a conference for all INANE members!
For the Planning Committee: Leslie Nicoll, Margaret Comerford Freda, Shawn Kennedy, Lisa Marshall, Jean Proehl (and even Suzanne, who is still with us in spirit!).