I have been to many conferences, mainly hosted by Microsoft, but this is my first time attending a Virtual Conference. And it was completely beyond expectations. This is what the main screen looks like. You can mouse over various venues and click to enter, say the Exhibit Hall, which hosted a few familiar and a few not so familiar vendors.
Although I did not get a chance to attend any live presentation during the day because of work, I did “wander” around a few vendor booths and register for giveaways. These vendor booths are just like the physical booths at real conferences. You have the vendor staff on hand to answer any questions, you can browse the available literature, or participate in an open chat. Just like in the physical world, when you “walk-up-to” a booth someone will greet you. I was surprised not to see Microsoft or Google. Both are trying to market their consumer Health Records Management systems. Microsoft, probably, is getting ready for the Connected Health Conference. Next year?
The navigation links at the top guide you to the various sections and you can wander around to check out the action. Another neat feature is the Tote Bag. This is a one-stop collection of all “conference goodies”, articles, information brochures, white papers, podcasts and a host of things. All these can be downloaded.
The lounge is an interesting place. You can strike up conversations via the chat and expand your network. You can look up who is online using the Who’s Here link. Click on a name and you can drill down into additional information. Cool feature – Send VCard.
Overall, I am very impressed by the sophistication of the event. I wish there were more vendors. Can’t wait for day 2. I hope I can find some time to attend a few live sessions I am interested in.