By Dennis Jones
Two hours later. The Software Engineering conference was just getting good. Although the Senior Software Engineer from Krempe had been extremely disappointed that she couldn’t video conference the early talk with her team, at least the event itself had made up for her venue Wi-Fi connectivity challenges. She’d deal with her disengaged team later.
For now, she’d enjoy the all-star panel. They were going deep on some of the thorny, theoretical issues dividing her field, the type of issues the Senior Software Engineer didn’t have time to tackle in her day-to-day work life. Suffice it to say, the conversation was riveting.
But as so often the case with conferences like these, there was a lot more going on than just what was happening on stage. Most of it was digital.
Case in point: the panel Q and A that so engrossed the attentions of the Senior Software Engineer featured questions culled in real time from the conference’s social media feeds. Had she not been struggling with venue Wi-Fi, she might have been able to join the digital discussion. As it turns out, the feed just went by without her.
That wasn’t it. Some promos, meet ups, special sessions and updates were only being advertised online. Essentially, the conference was happening on two, mutually-supporting planes, the real world and the digital space. Not having access to both, especially for someone as technically savvy as the Software Engineer, was as debilitating as not having access to any. So although the Software Engineer was enthralled by what was happening before her very eyes, she was missing everything else happening all around her.