By: Wayne Swanson, Psoft@Tech-Center.com
When I walked into the Wyndham on friday, I was looking at everyone for some
sign that they were here for WarpStock. Now I don't want to say where I headed first
after checking in but the first thing I saw was a t-shirt that referred to Warp
at the Atrium Bar. As I am certainly not the shy type I just walked up and asked,
"Are you here for WarpStock"? He turned to me with a big smile and before
he could reply, I knew, he was as happy to see me as I was to see him. "Abel
Mclendon" he said, "North Carolina". Yes, this was to be the start
of a beautiful weekend.
About 40 people had decided to have dinner at Bob Chinns on friday so we hopped
on buses, cars and roller skates to make our way there. The shuttle filled more
quickly than the people who signed up for it so I hitched a ride with Peter Skye
and two other notables (Really... I won't say who... I'm NOT a name dropper) On
the way, they baffled me with some abstract math. I was going to mention my mastery
of the "single digit times tables" to them but was afraid they would test
me so I kept that little gem to myself...
The meal was great and it offered another opportunity to meet 50 or 60 more users.
I failed miserably and only met about 22 of them. I also found that it is quite
hard to look sophisticated with your mouth full of sea food, butter running down
your lip and a bib on. At least the bib didn't say "Kiss the Cook".
I had a few people on my "must meet" list and hoped to mentally check
them off as I went. Because of our work together, I just had to meet Dan Casey and
Judy McDermott. Turns out, because of our previous interaction, we got along like
family right away. (No, we didn't bicker) We were up until 3:30 friday getting the
Voice booth together along with three or four others (who shall remain nameless
just in case I were to leave someone out).
After my 2 minute, 23 second shower I made my way to the Exhibition Hall. When
Judy saw me she just looked out of the corner of her eye and with a small smirk
she said, "I'm going to have to separate you two". Dan and I figure we
were millimeters from being grounded so we straightened up for the duration of the
My hand went out to everyone I met. Each and every one of them seemed happy to
meet another user. I really can't tell you how terrific all these people were. This
was a great chance to get to know one another and it appeared that no one would
pass up the opportunity to make a new friend.
The day flew by so fast that I had no idea day 1 was drawing to a close already.
Dan was beat and returned to his room to "freshen up" amid some good natured
ribbing from me so I felt that I couldn't take a nap without getting it right back.
I knew him too well already! As it turns out, he returned before much time had elapsed
and we continued into the night. More seeds of friendship were planted as the night
wore on. We would continue to plant and cultivate tomorrow.
We moved to the Oak Room and conversed over the faint din of a music and television
mix. Some one must have turned the clocks ahead when we weren't looking because
it seemed a bit early when the manager said "Let's go". We just didn't
want the day to end. We were finally enjoying conversations with folks who understood
the things we spoke of. We were enjoying the comaraderie. We were just plain having
OK, I'll say it, "C'mon up fella's". The conversation moved to my room.
We talked into the night and everyone seemed happy to be in Chicago in October.
By the time my company had left, it was 4 AM again... This time I would hear the
alarm, I hoped.
During the course of my travels, one thing was impressed upon me. I hadn't met
anyone that seemed to be putting on airs about who they were. Everyone seemed genuinely
interested in who you were and tried to be friendly. I suppose that is what convinced
me to stop telling everyone that I was the "Benevolent Dictator" of Bolivia
and a movie mogul on weekends.
Serenity Systems had what was probably the funniest, most energetic sales pitch
when one of them would yell, "Install OS/2... Ready? GO!", and then, "27
seconds! A new record!" as they installed an OS/2 desktop on a managed client.
It went on from there much like that. (I wish I had gotten their names but I was
laughing too hard)
Simplicity for Java was very impressive in the short demo I saw. Polyex had Hopkins
F.B.I. running on a big monitor available for all to play. Bill Schindler was showing
an impressive Smack on the big screen too. Centari Computers was there with a nice
hardware display. SDG had MoneyWiz and BizWiz but had a hard drive go down or something
of that nature so I (along with many others) missed the anticipated demonstration
By 4 PM I was tired. I never knew why actually, considering I had two hours of
sleep on wednesday, then four and a half on friday and an hour and a half on saturday.
Eight hours in five days? That should be enough for this old man. When I sat in
on Chip Davis' NetRexx session, I promptly fell asleep. I woke up with a start...
I didn't know if I was snoring but couldn't take the chance of embarrassing myself
further. I left what was one of my "Can't Miss" sessions and apologized
to Chip for it later.
There was so much to see and so little time to do it all. We can only hope that
these vendors and presenters are back again in '99 along with some of those that
missed the show this year.
I might also take a moment to say how much I enjoyed the extended period of time
spent with Dan Casey and Judy McDermott. These people have taken it upon themselves
to carry a torch for OS/2 and they've carried it very well, I might add. They were
so much fun to be around and during all the fun they accomplished much for the members
of Voice to be proud of. Dan and Judy, Thank you. I consider you both "friends".
thought: Why do I, all of a sudden, feel like "Carl the greenskeeper"
in the movie CaddyShack. (When he says to Tighe, "Friends forever")
Developers of WarpZip, ShowTime/2 and the Enhanced E Editors