I just recently returned from the Ink+Beyond conference in Vancouver, BC where many of Canada’s largest newspapers and media companies were in attendance: Postmedia, Glacier Media and Black Press editors and publishers were there just to name a few.
Everyone struck me as being quite positive about the future of media creation, and there were some interesting sessions surrounding mobile, tablets, and print. I especially enjoyed Geoff Tan’s Print+ presentation as it touched on some very interesting new advertising formats they are providing businesses in Singapore.
Taking his ideas one more step forward, I think there is a lot of great opportunity in developing web publishing software that allows newsrooms to freestyle publish editorial and advertising content to the web as opposed to being constrained by fixed templates and layouts. I’m thinking beyond banners, interstitials and overlays to faster and more freeform. To quote Tan, “Don’t sell boxes, sell solutions; don’t sell inventory, sell ideas.”
Vancouver is a gorgeous city with a quirky amalgamation of architecture ranging from classic to Victorian, Tudor to modern, and definitely Asian. The people are nice, the trains are clean, and our liberal is their conservative.
Sea to Sky
Heading out of town on the Sea to Sky Highway is breathtaking, and I can certainly understand why Squamish is considered to be the Outdoor Capital of America. Where else can you ski, hike, climb, kite board, kayak, and kiss a bear or a bald eagle all in the same day.
Further up the road are the snow covered peaks of Whistler upon which I stood in awe of the vastness of the Coastal Range. If only I had more than a couple of days to soak them in! I was blessed with Spring conditions and plenty of snow on what was literally the 1st of May. I thought this Florida boy had forgotten how to ski, but you just get back on that bike and ride it.
On the way back to the Vancouver airport I thought back on John Furlong’s keynote speech at the conference regarding his time at the helm of the 2010 Winter Olympics. There were a lot of trials and tribulations – lack of snow and an athlete death just to name two – but he and his staff still managed to pull off a successful multi-day event watched by the world. There was a palpable amount of Canadian pride in the room and two women at the table next to me had tears in their eyes. I found myself moved as well.
Canadians have a lot to be thankful for, and I am glad to have scratched the surface.