July 11, 2011
MILOfest 2011 Announcement
Hello Mac-Lovin’ Lawyers! It’s time for another MILOfest conference.
First, here’s the stuff you want to know:
MILOfest 2011 in a Nutshell
Dates: November 10-12, 2011 (Thursday-Saturday)
Thursday – Recent Convert/Newbie Track beginning at 11am (so you can fly in)
Thursday Evening – Social Event
Friday – General Programming – 8:30am to 4pm
Saturday – General Programming – 8:30am to 4pm
Venue: Disney World Coronado Springs Resort & Conference Center, Orlando, FL
Hotel: $119/night – good for 3 days prior to and after the event (or more if you’re sweet to the reservation person and there are rooms available at that price).
Price: $450 2010 Attendee Appreciation Rate, $500 Early Bird Pricing, $550 General Admission Pricing, $600 Last Chance Pricing (See the tickets above for details.)
Parks: Discount pricing for part-day tickets to the Disney Theme Parks
For our kind of conference, the only weekend open was November 10-12, 2011. I think we’re just going to settle into keeping it the second weekend in November assuming people keep wanting to have a conference.
I’m happy to announce that we’re back in the room we had for Year 1. If you were there, you remember that there were plenty of electrical outlets (yay!) and we were right off the patio for the breakfast buffet. It’s a bit longer walk from the rooms, but it’s worth it.
What Happened to Vegas?
I know I floated the idea that I was going to move it to the West Coast, and specifically to Vegas, but two things happened. First, Vegas wanted twice as much as Disney in food, rental, and room guarantees. Much as I love this conference, I couldn’t stick my neck out for a proposition that we would double our attendance.
Second, my law practice has really picked up in the last year and it’s going to be tough enough to organize this without dealing with the uncertainty of a new venue. Disney has been good to the MILOfest conference, and it’s nearly a turn-key event from a “facility” point of view. I want to focus on speakers and getting attendees, not on negotiating rates for a projector screen, or worrying that they’re going to serve old pretzels. I hope that you can understand, forgive, and decided to attend anyways.
What You Get
In addition to the space rental, your registration fee covers breakfast on Friday and Saturday, snacks on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Bring your mi-fi if you have one because Internet is not guaranteed. I will do what I can, but last year, mobile wifi was nearly ubiquitous and there were plenty of people willing to share their connection with the attendees. This year, since we’re back on the outside of the building, I predict that connections will be more solid than last year.
Room Rates & Theme Park
The conference rate for the hotel is $119/night and that’s good for up to 3 nights before and three nights after the event. The rate is also about $30 less than last year’s rates. I can almost guarantee that we won’t see them this low for future years, but let’s enjoy it while we can. In addition, for those of you looking to turn this into a Disney vacation, there are special discounts on part-day tickets for conference attendees – these will let you get into the parks at 2pm or 4pm for dinner, fun, and more.
There are a limited amount of rooms booked at this rate. The conference space is really being used a lot and it took a lot of negotiation to get this rate and this many rooms set aside for MILOfest. That rate is good only for the first 60 registrants. I might be able to increase it if there is a big, early rush to registration, but no promises.
If this is your first experience with MILOfest, let me welcome you and let you know, you’re in for a treat. This conference is outstanding, by all measure, and it’s due almost entirely to the superb speakers and programming. (The other part is how warm and collegial the attendees are. Honestly, these are the nicest attorneys I know, and the only conference where I can sit down with any of you and enjoy a drink.)
If you’re a repeat attendee (as nearly half of you last year were), I’m committed to keeping you up-to-date with fresh presentations. Last year, there were a few iPads in the room (actually about half of you had one), but no real way of presenting sessions on how to use them. This year, however, with mirroring, we’re going to feature at least 2 official sessions on the iPad. These will be useful whether you have the iPad 2 or the first generation, as nearly all of the programs run on both.
In addition, Mark Metzger is coming back to build on his presentation on how to enter information once and watch it work wonders. You’ll learn how to create fillable PDF forms, which you can use to generate retainer agreements, form letter, official filings, etc. Extremely powerful stuff whether you are a solo attorney, or running a larger practice.
Finis Price promises to make it this year. I promised him I’d mark him down in pencil.
As more sessions get booked, I’ll announce them, but you can expect to hear about things like Encryption & Backup, Actually Going Paperless, Peace & Tranquility in the Workplace, Mind-Mapping and Practical Security. I hope you’ll register early and take advantage of the lower price, trusting that the speakers are going to be great.
As with last year, there will be plenty of time set aside for networking and informal learning. We’ll take last year’s relaxed pace and try not to jam too much into those 2.5 days.
Another carryover from last year will be the “Basics” course for Thursday. I know I didn’t have enough time to cover everything I had for grade-level programs like Pages and most of you enjoyed learning tips and tricks for other programs and OSX. So, we’re going going to have the “Recent Converts” track, but we’ll cover some new ground too. Again, the point of this is to make sure that first-time attendees and people new to the platform don’t feel left behind.
I’m happy to report that we were able to hold the prices level from last year – no increase. There were a few bucks left over, which mostly went to my admin help. This is more of a labor of love than anything, but it costs money to run, and I respect that you pay good money to come. I try to hold up my end of the bargain by giving you the best tech/law on Macs in the country. (It helps that there isn’t too much competition.)
The price breakdown goes like this:
$450 – 2010 Attendee Appreciation Pricing (good through August 1, 2011)
$500 – Early Bird Pricing (good through August 1, 2011)
$550 – General Admission (good through October 10, 2011)
$600 – Last Chance Pricing (good through day of event)
To register for the event, follow the instructions on the EventBrite registration page or on the badge alongside the MILOfest webpage. To avoid the processing fees, you can call Elizabeth Incrocci, my Client Services Director, at 609.818.0068 and arrange to pay by check. Do not attempt to pay by check on the EventBrite site, or you’ll have to pay the processing fees. I’m a reasonable person – if you are registering within a few days of the expiration of a pricing tier, call with a promise to send a check in 3 days and I’ll honor the lower price.
I hope that last year’s attendees will decide to come back and that some of you will come for the first time. We’ll be sharing more news about the event on MILOfest’s Facebook page, Twitter and the MILOfest website. Any questions – please email me at info [at] milofest [dawt] com
Thank you in advance for your interest. See you there!
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