Posts in Category "On the road"

On the road to Memphis…

I’m in Memphis today to present Flash to the local AIGA chapter. Actually, since my colleague Josh Margulis is officially credited as the presenter, I only provided some assistance. As one would expect, the AIGA folks were pretty creative about promoting an event which takes place on Valentine’s Day!

Since I haven’t had a chance to present with Josh before, I was really looking forward to it. The only hitch was that it ain’t easy getting to Memphis from Toronto (and then from Memphis to Philly where we’re presenting at an event the next day).
So just to give you a little peak into the life of an SE, here’s my itinerary for Feb 14:
4am ET – wake up
4:30am-4:50am – car service to Toronto airport (YYZ)
4:50am-5:50am – get through customs & security
6:25am – YYZ to Chicago, IL (ORD), arr 7:18am
8:25am – ORD to Memphis, TN (MEM), arr 10:13am CT
10:45am CT – Get to event venue (by smelly cab)
3pm – Finish up session (skip lunch), wait 25 mins for a cab back to the airport
4:20pm – Get to the airport, eat a crappy lunch/dinner
5:55pm – Start writing this blog entry
6:57pm – Fly from MEM to Charlotte, NC (CLT), arrive 9:30pm ET
10:15pm ET – CLT to Phialdelphia (PHL), arrive 11:35pm
12:20am – Check into hotel
So that’s 1 province and 4 states in a 20+ hour day. It might sound like fun, but it wears on you after a bit..
But in the end, it’s worth it. I get to do what I love (talk) and I get to meet some great people. For example, the AIGA folks gave me a couple of parting gifts: a ‘Day for Flash Lovers’ t-shirt AND a Sun Studio, Memphis shirt!

Macworld Day 3: Celebrity Sightings at Macworld!

It’s been an interesting couple of days at Macworld – more because of the people I’ve met at the conference than anything else. Today, I was scheduled to do 4 theater sessions at the Adobe booth, along with several customer meetings, so the day flew by.

It seems like Macworld attracts all kinds of people – even celebrities. While there were no Brangelina, Tomkat or Britney sightings, I did see Richard Dreyfuss (near the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus) and Sinbad (near the Apple booth). I didn’t have a chance to talk to Mr. Holland’s Opus, but I did get to listen to Sinbad rave about Photoshop and Photoshop Elements. I didn’t realize that the guy was so into technology, and specifically, Adobe technology! To top it off, he was quite entertaining, so definitely one of the day’s highlights.

My encounters at the conference inspired me to try my hand at the ol’ Six degrees of Kevin Bacon game.. and thanks to and Google, I found a link!

  • Richard Dreyfuss was in Stand By Me with Kiefer Sutherland
  • Kiefer Sutherland was in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon
  • Kevin Bacon hosted Saturday Night Live when Phil Hartman was a cast member
  • Phil Hartman worked with Sinbad in Houseguest.

The conference has also been good in terms of seeing some of the Adobe celebrities – John Nack (Photoshop PM), Richard Galvan (Flash PM), Chris Orwig (photographer extraordinaire and all around nice guy) and some others.

Macworld First Impressions

Today was my first official day at the Macworld conference in San Francisco. I got into town yesterday afternoon, visited the Adobe booth while it was being set up and then went for dinner with my colleagues, Adam Pratt and Colin Fleming. I’m sorry to report that I reneged on my promise to visit Shalimar in the Tenderloin, and went to Naan ‘n Curry on O’Farrell instead. The food was actually pretty good, although Shalimar definitely has a better ambience – whereas Naan ‘n Curry felt like a Pakistani/Indian restaurant in a US city, going to Shalimar is like visiting the Indian subcontinent.

But I digress. I showed up at the Adobe booth this morning around 9:50am while the Steve Jobs keynote was going on in another building. The Apple booth was right behind Adobe’s, entirely hidden by a ceiling-to-floor black curtain that ran along the perimeter of the booth. As Steve made his announcements, portions of the black curtain would fall, revealing a giant poster of whatever gadget had just been shown on stage in the next building. I suppose it was like a striptease for geeks.

While this was going on, members of the media started gathering by the black curtain so they could be first to touch the MacBook Air or whatever. They got their chance once the keynote ended – all the curtains and other physical barriers came down and media & joe public alike rushed the Apple booth. It was fun to watch, but I can’t say I wanted to join the masses.

In terms of the keynote itself, I have to say that I was a little underwhelmed with what Steve & Co. had to show – and I’m willing to bet that a lot of attendees would agree with me. A few people suggested that maybe Apple is working on something huge and just couldn’t get it done before the show, so they went with whatever they had. Others observed that Steve wasn’t his usual self, and himself seemed less excited than he normally is.

As for the rest of the conference, I had a chance to walk around the floor a bit today and plan to do some more of it tomorrow and Thursday. I can’t believe that there are so many different companies making iPod/iPhone cases and covers!

On a positive note, Adobe has put up its staff at the W, which is right across from the conference venue (Moscone Center). I ended up in a standard room, but like every other W, the furnishings are very interesting.

Going to Macworld -or- Shalimar, here I come!

So I’m going to Macworld in San Francisco next month. I feel a little funny posting this entry on my Thinkpad, although I don’t think it’ll be making the trip to San Fran. 🙂 As a fairly new Mac owner, I’ve never actually been to Macworld.. so the trip should be interesting. To be honest, I’m probably more excited about spending some time in SF, rather than San Jose. Thanks Apple!

My first stop: Shalimar on Jones St. If you like Pakistani/Indian food, this is the best place in the city, IMO. My wife says she likes Naan ‘n Curry and Pakwan better, but I beg to differ.

Anyway, I’ll be presenting a few theater sessions – mostly for CS3 Web Premium and Interactive Video with Flash. If you’re planning to attend, maybe I’ll see you there!

A few photos from the sales & marketing conference

I promised that I would post a few pictures from the recent Adobe sales & marketing conference.. and since I didn’t actually bring a camera myself, I had to rely on others sending me some of their shots.. I’m not sure what the official Adobe policy is on posting these publicly, but they’re all pretty generic, so I’m guessing it’s cool.

Adobe turned 25 this year (started on December 2, 1982 I believe) – so there was a big party on the Thursday night to celebrate. It was held in a huge tent/pavilion the size of two or three football fields! The main act was Smasmouth (lead singer pictured above), who actually put on a pretty good show, but the audio levels were way too high, making it impossible to actually talk to other people. C’est la vie.

Any companies out there that haven’t yet done an ‘Idol’ type event? Well, last week was Adobe’s turn – and I must say they did a pretty good job with the whole production. The best part was the judges – Terry White played Randy Jackson’s role quite well, including all the Yo Dawgs and telling everyone they were a little ‘pitchy’.

So here’s my brush with a Photoshop deity.. that’s me on the right and John Nack (Photoshop PM) on the left! Boy do I look short next to John – and he’s not super tall, which makes me a little vertically challenged.

I also got to meet Bruce Chizen (outgoing CEO), John Warnock (co-founder of Adobe, inventor of postscript) and Chuck Geschke (co-founder of Adobe), which was kind of neat.

Overall the conference was a ton of fun. I really do feel privileged to work at Adobe – not only because of the great software and technologies the company is known for, but also because of my brilliant and inspiring co-workers.

By the way, the above three photos are from Terry White.. and he has a much more interesting post on the 25th Anniversary Party.. so check it out.

On the road…

I’m at an Adobe staff conference in San Jose all week, so haven’t been able to get to the blog the last few days. For an employee that works away from a major office, these types of conferences are great for getting some rare face-to-face time with my colleagues. Every year I’m amazed by the incredible talent at the company – just great people to work with!

Anyway, getting the skinny on all the new and exciting things happening at the company.. but unfortunately most of it is confidential, so you’ll have to wait, but I promise it’ll be worth it.

There is a large event planned later this week to officially celebrate Adobe’s 25th anniversary – I’ll try to post some pictures afterwards of your fav Adobe personalities gettin’ down.

Speaking of NYC… Flash Billboard in Times Square

I was in Manhattan this week for a few meetings and had some spare time to visit Times Square to see the new ‘Adobe’ billboard. It took me a while to find it, since aside from a quick 10-second ‘Powered by Flash’ video clip that plays few minutes, there weren’t any additional clues.

So in case you find yourself near W 48th & 7th/8th avenue, look for The Color Purple Starring Fantasia billboard and then look right under that. What you’re looking at is the largest Flash Video player in the world! If you want to be at eye-level with the billboard, I’d suggest Foley’s Fish House at the Renaissance Hotel. As an aside, that hotel just went through a massive renovation and they went with this crazy, plastic/organic decor in the place. Kind of weird, but then again, it’s New York.

By the way, is it just me or is that Dana Davis (Monica Dawson/muscle mimic on Heroes) on the poster?