I am truly sorry that it has taken me till now to write my report on CUE 2006. First of all, the conference came through with flying colors — fireworks, actually. The tech staff found me a lapel mic, and those tiny speakers actually put out an impressive sound, and proved to be more than sufficient for my podcasting session. Got to get me some of those!
The CUE conference was once one of the two or three leading state edtech conferences, but it has fallen in recent years for a variety of reasons. After all, the Dot Com Bust happened mostly in California. But I’m here to tell you that CUE is back. They had over 3,000 educators in attendance, many of the people I met having come from Northern California. ..And I’m sure they were as shocked as me to see snow in Palm Springs. CUE happens twice a year. Once in the south (Palm Springs or Anaheim), and once in the North (Sacramento).
My featured address started with just a handful of attendees. Inside of five minutes, the room was almost packed. People were simply awestruck by the snow.
California as an interesting place to be involved in education. It is probably the single state that has been hit hardest by the budget crunches of the past six years. Yet, the energy that I always experience, when working in that state, can almost be felt and harnessed. It’s a great place to present, because I can feel the excitement.
It was a full day, starting with an 8:00 featured address, then a book signing (I signed about 9 books in an hour, while Peter Reynolds had a line waiting for his signature for the entire hour he was there. I’m not complaining. He’s Peter Reynolds). Then I did a rather shallow session on podcasting, where we actually made a podcast as a group — great fun. And then a webcast with Chris Walsh. That was fun too, thanks to Chris. Working in front of a camera usually creeps me out.
Finally, I spent about an hour and a half walking around the exhibitor’s area, seeing lots of very old and dear friends. After the conference, I took a short drive into the desert where I took some pictures with my DSLR camera, (look for some beautiful scenery in my Serial Teacher photo blog), and then a rather tedious drive back to LA. I spend today in the air and in airports, and then the next several days at home. Glorious.