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By: Wayne Swanson firstname.lastname@example.org
He decided that I should explain the accidental tour to his boss and that "we"
had made a mistake so I took it upon myself to save his skin as he rolled the cab
a good stones throw to the "south" of the airport and to the convention
center. After all, his boss doesn't know me. What can he do?
It sounded like we were at the end of the runway, that's how close it was to
the airport! I was afraid of what this was going to cost me but I think the guy
took a shine to me... he only charged me five bucks for the lift... AND the tour!
I did find time to set up eventually and then went straight back to the business
at hand... ratchet jawing! We gravitated toward the lounge and spent a few terrific
hours catching up. Some serious talk and a lot of raz. Everyone is always in a good
mood at WarpStock, it's a just a great chance to enjoy each others company.
Saturday morning came early (as did Sunday and Monday) so after getting a good
full two hours of shut-eye, I ran through the shower (being careful not to get too
wet) and zipped downstairs. Ok... I slid downstairs with toothpicks holding my eyelids
open. I said my good mornings, made sure everything was ready and bolted out the
door. It wouldn't open for fifteen minutes so I had time to burn.
In the foyer were people sitting over their morning muffins and coffee like they
were waiting for the bell to ring. There were gaggles of people making small talk
and introductions, the unsung heroes of the day were at the registration table dutifully
taking care of registrations, attaching ribbons to name tags and putting packets
together. A shoppers delight for the gregarious type! My eyes went South and I could
see the battered souls, nay, the outcasts of society as they stood outside the door
for a morning... ummm... well you know why they were there. Now I've always tried
to be all things to all people so I thought it best that I step outside and join
them. editor note: Wayne, smoking is not good for you, please
As outcasts, we actually had some great conversations out there, computers, some
politics, a bit of hunting, weather, common sense (and why are we the only people
that seem to have any). It was a great atmosphere, in terms of weather and attitude.
They came from all over the US, Canada and at least 4 european countries that I
know of personally. There were also a couple of people from Florida at least one
of which was just a bit worried about his property as a hurricane (Floyd I believe?)
was ripping up the coast. After a few mental snapshots and gladhands I stepped inside
to continue my rounds, collecting names and tidbits of personal information as I
I cannot overstate how much I enjoyed WarpStock again this year. Everyone, and
I mean "everyone" seemed to be enjoying themselves immensely. From the
very start, the WarpStock crew (Board and volunteers) were extremely helpful and
great attitudes must have been part of the uniforms they issued. Even to the point
of coming around and asking if there was anything else we needed to get ready. Who
gives you that kind of service anymore? Many thanks go out to Milind Rao and Johnny
Kitchens from the great people doing all the work in the Voice booth and myself
for all their help. (in prison a guy like this would wear the proud title of, "the
guy who can get things") :-) editor note: Wonder how Wayne
knows this prison lingo?
Another smiling face, Eric (Erickson, our networking guru) said the internet
connection was up 100% of the time if I remember correctly. With a stable link to
the outside world Eric and crew made the inside work look easy. He spent most of
his day wrapped in cable and smiling at everyone that passed by.
I was very happy to see so many IBM'ers in attendance and I must say that they
were stellar examples of the kind of people any company would want wearing their
badge. I didn't have an opportunity to meet the guys running the IBM booth as they
were quite busy when I had a chance to stroll over there (I had to sign up for the
WSeB drawing that I didn't win) but I did get a chance to meet Mike Kaply, Jeff
Kobal and Mike Persell (alphabetical order <BG>) and they were all personable
and very friendly. IBM represented themselves well with the good people they sent.
These are guys that seem to enjoy what they do and while they are at it, they are
doing some great things for all of us... We do need to remember to thank them whenever
we get the chance.
Everything kinda' shut down when Warped Jeopardy was about to start. I think
almost everyone wanted to see what it was going to be all about. What a great job
by all the folks at Sundial. They had the visuals all setup along with the Jeopardy
music and we even had commercial breaks!
Chris Wright had mentioned the TV commercials elsewhere and they were great (some
even hilarious) but, having never seen him before, I have to tell you how impressed
I was by David Barnes in the clips that were shown. That guy could sell AMD cpu's
to Intel. Wow, what a personality! I had always heard about him but had never seen
anything with him in it. If I had that kind of charisma, I'm telling you... I could
We(PillarSoft) were situated in an area known as the Serenity Pavilion where
several independent vendors were taking part in a working demonstration of Serenity's
WiseManager technology demo for the weekend. All of the vendors apps were loaded
onto the system and each morning (and during the day for demo) the system would
fire up and distribute all of our individual desktops to a diskless NetStation at
our booth. The amazing thing is that I expected the apps to run slower over the
network but actually didn't notice much speed difference. And man were those NetStations
nice looking little units. I could see one of them on my desktop. :-)
I had quite a few applications to show and we were not able to get all of the
apps on the system to demo them from WiseManager. I sat with Kim Cheung for about
15 minutes and he had several on but we got separated for some reason and were not
able to get it all done. I did have another machine along so everything was still
available and I also got to see most of them set up on Serenity's system.
Kim was busy "all" of the time. The guy must have 80% caffeine in his
bloodstream because he is always on the go. If he needs to go to the other side
of the table for example, he practically "runs" around it. I see Bob St.
John as more of the facilitator type. He's got that deep voice with just a bit of
rasp that can be a soothing influence when you have the personality he seems to
have. "How can we make this work?" If I close my eyes, he sounds just
like my brother-in-law. Oh no, that's good Bob. <BG> I wish I'd had more time
to visit with them too but they were wanted from every direction most of the time.
These guys seem to have all their eggs in a row and together they make quite a team.
Most of my day was spent leaning over a table visiting with fellow users. That
might not sound like fun to you but for me it was absolutely terrific. I don't consider
myself a salesman but I do enjoy visiting with people and every minute of the day
was fun for me. Last year I rolled into Chicago for WarpStock 98 not knowing a soul
that would be there. I walked away three days later with an armload of friends and
new acquaintances. This year, I knew I would see most of those old friends and looked
forward to sharing some conversation and a few laughs but after the weekend in Atlanta,
I had acquired another armload to add to the list. It's sort of like a family reunion
and it's going to be an awful big family on the next trip.
The downside is that when you meet so many new people it is hard to be able to
spend much time with each of them cultivating a relationship. Being the quiet, shy
and yes... even bashful, guy that I am, I felt that in order to do my part, it was
necessary to invite folks to my room so the night wouldn't end too fast. Half of
the fun of being there is sitting up all night and talking with people that share
your interests. I think I averaged two hours of sleep a night and felt bad for taking
up so much time doing it.
Out of the three nights we spent there, the front desk only had to call us once
to have us keep the noise down. Personally, I think it was some of those crotchety
old windows users next door that couldn't stand to see us have so much fun.
After a great meal Craig Greenwood made an appearance with his magic show and
kept us entertained well into the evening. Of course, like any good magician, he
coaxed a few notables up to the stage from the audience to be the butt of... er...
I mean, to help him perform some amazing feats. I think I had heard that he will
be doing his show at WarpTech in the spring so if you want to see a real OS/2 user
that really has an "outside the realm of OS/2" talent, you may want to
book your flights to Phoenix early.
After the social I had invited quite a few people up but had to run some errands
for the "Mistress of OS/2" (Esther, you didn't show up so Judy took the
title and wore the sash all weekend) and I think I may have lost a few of them when
they knocked at my door and no one was home yet. We still had enough people to fill
the available seating areas and parts of the floor (this isn't one of those "high
class" affairs) but I felt bad about not being there sooner.
Isn't it great to sit amongst friends?