It seems like forever since we shared our plans to change the April 7 event from in-person to online, yet it was only 17 days ago. The COVID-19 pandemic has grown substantially worse, and it’s up to all of us to try to minimize the spread, the impact, and the loss of lives. It’s also important to continue to be effective in these ‘shelter-in-place’ times if we can—to run our businesses, to learn and teach, and to keep in contact with our family, friends, and colleagues while keeping our distance from others.
With that in mind, we have changed our programming content (as well as delivery) for the next two months to address the issues that really matter right now. On April 7, we will now cover how to work, learn, and just ‘live’ online more effectively. We all have experience doing many things online, but now we must get on with work, learning, and life almost entirely online. What was occasional or optional is now required and nearly constant. Our speakers will share how to choose and use technologies to be more effective, which can help our businesses, our personal development, and our relationships survive and thrive. Of course, this event (and the next two) will be entirely online—please RSVP to receive the Zoom link, and please do not show up at the Austin Central Library! (We will move the previously scheduled topic—startups and innovation—to September 2020.)
We will hold a special ‘extra’ online event on April 21. Whereas April 7 will focus on how to be effective in your online life with others (working, learning/teaching, and ‘living’), April 21 will be all about how to use technologies to take care of you. Our speakers will share how technologies can help you sustain and even improve mental wellbeing and physical health during these shelter-in-place days. We are all about community, but community is about people—and we want you each of you to take care of you as well as others. We will have more to share about this special event in the coming days.
Finally, we have also changed the May programming to cover COVID-19 more directly. On May 5th, our presenters will discuss how technologies are used to identify outbreaks and predict epidemics, to understand viruses, and to design and deliver drugs and vaccines. COVID-19 is not the first epidemic and won’t be the last, but science and technology are advancing persistently and rapidly. Several technologies will be key instruments in enabling healthcare professionals, government leaders and policy makers, and all of us to defeat the current pandemic and be better prepared for the next one.
We plan to return to our regular programming on June 2, and the topic will be 100% fun: gaming! From simple smartphone games to massively multi-player online games, from video screens to VR experiences, Patrick Curry returns to share the current state-of-the-art in gaming and what may come next. The demos will be great, too—and if we are back to meeting in person at Austin Central Library, we may have some other surprises for you…
Stay healthy, stay home… and see you online a few times in the months ahead. Also, don’t forget to join our Slack workspace to keep in touch between events!
Jay Boisseau, Founder and Executive Director