So We Might Pull Together An Information Technology Conference In Detroit


You’ve heard / read me rant about how many irons we have in how many different fires we have at the moment.

Well, one of those is that there are some very serious discussions underway about us putting together a large-scale Information Technology conference in Detroit.

Because there really isn’t one to speak of.

And yes, this is what that whole “Godfather” moment thing has been about for the past couple of months.

But you know us…if we’re going to do something, then it’s going to have to be done right.

And of course, by “right”, we mean “the way that works the best for all of you”.

So, here we are…yet again…looking for some feedback and input from you…

Just for background, go back and take a look through A Scene From The Godfather again over at

Here are some basic concepts that you need to know / understand before you start answering questions:

Yes, we want it to be downtown.

We don’t know how we’re going to pay for this.  Not sure if you know it, but conferences are friggin’ expensive as all hell to put together.

So we’re probably looking at pulling in sponsors.  We’ve had a few conversations with a few different people and groups…and there’s been some high level conversations with people who have expressed an interest in getting on board…but it’s time to start nailing things down if this is going to happen.

And this probably won’t be a free thing to attend.  Not unless you’re going to be willing to sign your lifeblood away to the sponsors who’ll want every drop of information wrung out of you that they can get.  And then one more piece of data on top of that.

But yes, it will be worth it.  Because if it’s not, we’re not going to do it.

We’re thinking about multiple tracks for the conference.  Cloud based.  Open source based.  Microsoft based.  But it’s a matter of figuring out what you actually need.

Because that’s the biggest part of this.  We’ve said it a million times – everything we do with this group is a natural evolution.  The casual networking events led to the Pink Slip Parties.  The requests for other locations led to us moving our events around the state.

Well, now we’re taking the next step…but only if the desire is really as strong as the conversations we’ve had thus far have led us to believe it is.  Because we’re not doing this for ourselves.  Trust me, this one’s probably going to put me in the nuthouse…and that’s if it actually happens and goes well.  Heaven help me if something actually goes sideways…

So…take a minute and read through and fill out the below form.  Please?

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  1. Eric Troldahl says

    So, the IT Conference… I didn’t like the limited info the poll let me give.

    I’d like both some intro/management detail panels, some peer led/reviewed in depth panels, and maybe even some moderated discussion panels (give the moderating duties to Dave, he’ll LOVE that!).

    And the amount I’ll pay is in direct proportion to two factors – 1. Am I employed yet? and 2. What the conference includes. Oh, and I might even be willing to help with something like Registration or Security or Ops, each of which I have experience from Science Fiction/Fantasy conventions.

    If you haven’t yet, you need to talk to Penguicon organizers to see what help or advice you can get from them.

    Maybe get the Water Joe company to provide either discounted or free caffeinated water, or see if a sponsor like Google or GE IT wants to provide stuff for the “con suite” if there is such a thing at an IT conference.

    just some random midnight thoughts.


  2. Chris says

    I am a staffer for penguicon, and could answer some of your questions, as well as direct you to the proper staff for questions out of my scope.

    Also I am trying to form a Microsoft System Center User Group for the Detroit area. Please contact MSCUG (at)mdt2012(dot)com if you are interested in attending/getting it off the ground.

  3. Joel Chappell says

    I would echo what Eric said:
    “I’d like both some intro/management detail panels, some peer led/reviewed in depth panels, and maybe even some moderated discussion panels (give the moderating duties to Dave, he’ll LOVE that!).”

    But OK.. I get it.. It would be hard to do that.. Well not so much the “Dave Moderation” part (Yes I mean “Moderation” Take that either way.)

    Successful IT depends on good IT management as well as Management support as well… However, Good IT has a good peer base as well in a social IT setting.

    At the risk of getting ridicule from the group for quoting Hannah Montanna: (Look I have a 7 year old girl.) you need to have the “Best of Both Worlds.” for a “Standout” event IMHO.

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