What goes into selecting a conference hotel & 2018 RJN Report

Richard rjnelsoncf at cox.net
Fri Oct 5 13:15:35 MDT 2018


Hello Dave et. al.,

 

Thanks for making the excellent and complete list.  Many of the audio visual items are rentable from the hotel, but we save money if we bring them ourselves.  We spent hundreds of dollars ($295.00) for such items this year.  The Meeting room costs ($600/day) totaled $2,016.41 with 23% ($465.40) of that amount being taxes.  California is a very expensive state.

 

The hotel had a $10,000+ Samsung touch screen (72”?) which worked very well once we learned how to use it.  I was told that since the hotel is in Silicon Valley they had to have a state-of-the-art screen.  It was GREAT.

 

The hotel allowed snacks, but no sodas.  We eventually solved the problem and ended up with a small refrigerator which the hotel stocked and charged us $1 for the ones we took.  

 

Sam donated snacks and sodas so we “took” only about 50 from the hotel stock.  This worked out very well in the end.  Special thanks to Sam and Bob.  Bob Prosperi made an impromptu  Friday counter offer of a dollar per soda (vs. $2 in the proposal) and the hotel assistant sales manager accepted it.  That is how we ended up with the refrigerator being put into the Conference room.

 

We had 47 official attendees with 45 donating $60 each for the Conference costs.  While I haven’t tallied everything yet we probably contributed a little to the Conference fund.

 

The locations discussed for HHC 2019 to start considering in January or February are:

 

1.     Colorado Springs new – Tom Mullikin

2.     Reno NV again – David Ramsey?

3.     Bay Area CA again – Tom Chrapkieweiz*

4.     Nashville TN again – Gene Wright*

 

*  Investigating new hotels.

 

This is only the suggestions made at the Conference and these are not cast in stone.

 

Visiting, photographing, and talking to low cost flexible hotels is the single most important and difficult part of the Conference.  The more space the better.

 

The HHC 2019 dates are the third weekend of September or the first weekend of October.

 

What always amazes me is the continued interest, support, and attention from our HHC Guardian Angel for these conferences.  It is indeed a phenomena in itself – repeated 45 times now.  Over 10% of the attendees were first timers, and everyone – especially those who spoke to me directly – seemed to have a great time.  Here is an example.

 

A prime side trip was the Computer History Museum.  This is a must visit – allow plenty of time – place.  I had to find someone, and I went back through the exhibits – the mazes – to find them.  What I saw were many groups of 3 to 5 HHCers engaged in enthusiastic conversations.

 

Meals are always challenging and we fended for ourselves instead of having them catered.  We allowed 90 minutes and this worked out OK.  Food is very personal and trying to pick a low cost menu is always a challenge.  The hotel was just too expensive. At least you have more options if we go out for meals.  California is a very expensive state.

 

We kept to the schedule as published on the website with an added presentation by Eric Rechlin on Sunday describing the contents of the 32 GB Conference Thumb drive.  We have a few left over which are available for $25.  All monies collected go towards the next Conference.  Contact Eric.  This is what is on the thumb drive.

 

     

 

HHC 2018 attendees discussed a special HP “inspiration project” which will be announced as soon as we are able to.

 

Each committee member has fine-tuned his part of the Conference load.  As we get older our lives are subject to unpredictable changes.  Employment is a vital issue and we had examples of its impact made clear this year.

 

I will provide a detailed Conference Report as soon as I can.  This posting is a good start.

 

Everyone involved and attending contributed.  Our special guest speaker, Dave Cochran, is to be thanked, and I believe that he had a precious experience as well.  His two daughters were ecstatic at seeing their aging father being recognized for his engineering work with the only HHC standing ovation I can remember.

 

     

 

X < > Y,

 

Richard

P.S.  Eric had a small thin Win10 tablet computer that Walmart is selling with free shipping for $160.  You could load the emulators from the thumb drive to have a fantastic collection of HP calculators including Prime, in one place with a large presentation.  WOW!  For a slightly higher cost than a  Prime you have these:

 

      

It seems like a worthwhile investment for dozens of machines.  I am not sure of the memory limitations, but I am sure you could have most if not all of them in one portable place.  Perhaps Eric can provide additional details.  Here are the ones in the just the “Official HP” File folder.

 

     

 

From: hhc-bounces at lists.brouhaha.com [mailto:hhc-bounces at lists.brouhaha.com] On Behalf Of dave at larou.com
Sent: Friday, October 5, 2018 9:12 AM
To: Handheld Computing Conference discussion list
Subject: What goes into selecting a conference hotel

 

At HHC2018, Richard mentioned the importance of selecting a location for the conferences and having someone nearby who can do some of the legwork.  I asked for some details of what that involves. Here are my notes on his response.  Maybe Monte and Dave Ramsey can add anything they think of.  They've both been the point person recently. Heck, we might even be able to create an RFP to give to prospective hotels.

My hope is that this might encourage people to think about locations near them and become the "point person."

*	Conference should be in the hotel if possible. Travel to another location is always difficult and time consuming.
*	Reasonable room rates for people
*	Reasonable room rate for the conference room
*	What are the taxes? Hotel taxes are often very high
*	Short (or at least easy) travel from the airport.
*	International airport for the folks flying in from abroad.
*	Meals: you have to think about breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
*	Can lunch be catered? How much? What is the menu?  It's usually better to be on our own
*	Are there restaurants nearby (walking distance?)  Will they be open on the weekend?
*	Does the hotel offer breakfast? Is it an extra charge? What do they serve?
*	Basically we need menu and cost for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
*	Drinks and snacks in the conference room

Regarding the conference room itself:

*	What is the size?
*	Where are power outlets? Can attendees access power?
*	What sort of lecture display is available?  Projector? Monitor? Also we need a pointer and a mouse.
*	Is audio equipment available (microphone and speakers).
*	Can we use the room during the hours we need (early Saturday am to late Saturday PM and Sunday)
*	Can we use the room for setup on Friday night?
*	Can the room be locked Friday and Saturday nights? What about during lunch and/or breaks?
*	Generally we it needs to accommodate 50 people.
*	Tables tables tables. Richard stressed that this is a chronic problem. We need tables for the attendees plus an additional 5-7 tables for the prize table, snacks & drinks, laptops for presentation etc.

It occurs to me that what we need is more akin to a lecture hall than a conference room. 

Dave

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