Lunchtime Links: The Costs of Federal Conference Cuts

Why recent federal conference cuts have been a huge loss for military members. Also: Try something clever with your name tags.

With the recent spate of cuts to federal conferences, the goal has been to balance the need to reduce spending with the need for education and information. But based on one magazine editor’s recent experience, the new reality might be cutting into education, too.

That and more in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Plenty of tech, no eyeballs: According to Defense Systems editor-in-chief Barry Rosenberg, the problem with the recent Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA) conference was that the people who most of the technology on display was intended for — military service members — weren’t in the room to see it, as many didn’t attend due to recent conference-related budget cuts. “So here are a few of the new technologies that I was able to see demonstrated at AUSA,” Rosenberg wrote. “Since I carry a pen instead of a weapon, though, many soldiers will have to learn about these technologies and capabilities from our magazine and website instead of gaining valuable first-hand knowledge that can be applied directly to their missions.” Is there a better way to deal with federal conference cuts?

Get inventive with the badges: Looking for some ideas to engage people right off the bat? Consider a “badge bar.” Jeffrey Cufaude says the idea — which involves illustrators, ink stamps, and large, square stickers — was a huge hit at the recent TEDxIndianapolis event. “Such a simple effort turned out to be a wonderful welcoming exercise for the conference attendees,” he writes. “The majority of participants opted to decorate their badges, and the informal interaction in the hallways created a engaging buzz before the official program began.”

Events LinkedOut: According to the Event Manager Blog’s Julius Solaris, LinkedIn’s Events app, which was heavily used by B2B marketers, is going away. Solaris laments the decision. “In previous conversations with large event planning firms, I gathered that LinkedIn Events was one of the most adopted social media tactics (for some a whole strategy) in the sector,” he explains. “It is easy to see how this news will blow out the strategy of those who put all eggs in one basket.” Did you use the app?

Raving about responsive design: Responsive design is all the rage — Associations Now even has it! But bigger names are starting to try out the approach, including The Guardian. (The beta site is here, if you’re curious.) Why is it making the change? The newspaper’s Matt Andrews writes that while there are development benefits, users may get the best deal of all: “The benefit to the end user is the experience of browsing a webpage which is tailored for their particular viewing context, rather than attempting a one-size-fits-all approach which either forces everybody into a lowest common denominator pigeonhole, or assumes a high bar of entry which not all visitors can match.” Have you considered going responsive?

What cool stuff have you seen online today? Let us know in the comments.

(TMG archive photo)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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