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50 I-CONNECT007 I REAL TIME WITH... IPC APEX EXPO 2021 SHOW & TELL MAGAZINE by Patty Goldman, I-CONNECT007 Gosh, I sure missed the live event. I listened in on several technical sessions, the awards ceremony, the keynotes, and the Hall of Fame management session. I tried a couple of professional development courses but got the frownie face on my screen and didn't go back in. I have almost 90 days(!) to browse them to my heart's content, so what the heck. ere were good points and a few not so good things about this first ever virtual confer- ence. You probably experienced some yourself. e management session was outstanding. HoF'er Gene Weiner almost singlehandedly put together a fabulous lineup of speakers from both large and small companies. Most of the talks were prerecorded but the Q&A was live. e big advantage: no trouble getting speak- ers who were too far away or couldn't spare the time—they just had to put together a talk, record it, and then be available at a specific time for the Q&A. No hours or cost spent trav- eling. e main downside I saw was that this was the first session of the week and there were a few technical glitches—mostly on my end. But then, I can go back and see them all again, so I'm not too upset. e quality of the papers and speakers in the technical sessions was very good. Some people had chosen to prerecord their talk while others were live. e advantage of pre- recording was no risk of the speaker losing connection during their talk. Otherwise, not a lot of difference. Everyone was live and vis- ible for the Q&A at the end of their talk. ere seemed to be plenty of good questions and discussion—questions sent in via chat box and discussion between moderator and speaker. It worked. e neat thing about the awards ceremony was that all the awardees had a moment in the sun, so to speak, via recorded comments (usu- ally this was limited to just the Hall of Fame and corporate awardees). Unlike most years, everyone attending any part of the conference/ show could watch this. Usually, the awards are presented at luncheons that must be pur- chased. Which of course was the sad part for me—no luncheon! No sitting with a group of people that you may or not know and discuss- ing the morning's sessions or committees or what have you. Which brings me to my big disappointment of APEX EXPO 2021: no people! No seeing your industry friends, no catching up on a year's worth of happenings, no discussions, no hugs, no smiles. Our industry and IPC are, for sure, all about the people and there was just no way to actually talk to anyone. No one's fault, just made it rather lonely. IPC meetings are always a recharge time for me. My Thoughts From the Virtual Show

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