Very interesting email just came through from Geoff Jacobs, senior VP of strategic marketing at Leica Geosystems HDS, out in San Ramon:
Dear 2010 Leica Geosystems HDS Worldwide User Conference participant and colleagues,
I am very pleased to inform you that the dates and venue have been set for the 2011 conference – with a major, exciting expansion.
On June 7-9, 2011, in Orlando, Florida, the highly successful HDS Worldwide User Conference will join with the highly successful Intergraph 2011 Conference plus many other, key business areas within Hexagon, including Airborne Sensors, Leica Geosystems Surveying & Engineering, Hexagon Machine Control, Hexagon Metrology, and other parts of Hexagon to provide attendees with an unprecedented array of presentations, training, technologies and new business opportunities under one roof!
The comprehensive new conference will provide attendees the focused benefits of the HDS conference plus a whole lot more. Formal announcement of the Hexagon-wide conference is planned for later this month. Over 3,000 attendees are expected at this major, expanded event.
Keep your eyes open for additional, exciting details and pass the word!
I can’t say I’m surprised, but it’s kind of a bummer.
First: Orlando in June? I might as well start sweating now.
In June, this hallway will be full of all types of professionals, not just Leica HDS laser scanner users.
Second, that Leica HDS conference in San Ramon, where it’s been for years, was pretty great this year when I went as one of my first industry events. Very tightly focused. Very cognizant of the need for a business case for laser scanning. Not simply technical how-to stuff, but very high-level strategic presentations. Plus, it was close to San Francisco.
But it’s also great to see Hexagon bringing everyone under one tent. There are, as Geoff says in the email, likely to be an impressive array of presentations at that show, and it’s always a good idea to get the laser scanning guys mingling with folks from other industries, as laser scanning still has some PR and education work to do before it’s completely mainstream and well known throughout the many verticals where it has applications.
Will laser scanning get a little lost in such a big show? Possibly. But Trimble did a pretty good job of embracing 3D in its large user conference in Las Vegas (now Las Vegas is a place I’m okay with visiting – just putting that out there), so it can definitely be done. Still, some of the charm of that intimate show in San Ramon will certainly be lost. I have no doubt that Geoff will be a little bummed to give up his role as host of that show. He seemed to revel in the details, and he did great work.
The industry is growing up, though, and this is just another sign that laser scanning and 3D imaging is part of a much bigger picture. I’ll be more than a little interested to see how this all plays out.