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Gnomedex Gets Smart (Cup)


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Larry Wu brings over 27 years of brand and business development experience to the SmartCup Board of Directors. He is currently the VP of Product Development for SK Food Group in Seattle, and most recently served as COO for Bossa Nova Beverages.

Larry joined Bossa Nova from Iconoculture, Inc., where he served as VP, Consumer Strategist. There he led food and beverage consumer consulting projects for key Fortune 500 clients in the Consumer Packaged and Restaurant industries. Mr. Wu also spent two years leading research and development at CH Guenther and Son, Inc. where his team was responsible for the development, production and launch of key foodservice products such as the McGriddle.

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What Do Presenters Have to Say About Gnomedex?

According to nearly everyone in attendance, Gnomedex 10 was a huge success. Many are even touting it as the best of the series. While it’s nice to hear these things, we know that the success is directly related to the excellent lineup of presenters we watched on our stage. This year, the amount of talent and creativity inside of Bell Harbor was unparalleled. The subjects presented may have been vastly different from each other. However, the passion, inspiration and dedication of each presenter was the common theme that brought it all home.

Photo Credit to Jean-Luc David

We asked our speakers what Gnomedex meant to them, and a few have already responded with glowing praise. We will update this post with input from other presenters as we receive it.

Amy Karlson told us that “Gnomedex gave me my twitter “ah-ha”. Most of us HCI researchers haven’t caught on, but I now “get it” and am forever changed. I have even considered writing an opinion piece for our major conference entitled “Why researchers must use twitter”. I was amazed at what a strong sense of community it is able to create instantaneously and how effective it is for filtering the fire hose of information we all struggle to keep on top of. This epiphany may alter the course of my research!”

Willow Brugh says that Gnomedex was “Authentic: The core group are honest, kind, and no-bullshit. This means the rest of the conference follows suit. And holy crap, but that is nice. Accepting: As someone who is often the exception to the rules – whether due to hair, or gender, or interests, or whatever – I really appreciate this. Everyone expressed admiration of my hair; and everyone was up to talk about anything. Interesting: You have to have people who are interested in order for things to be interesting. It seemed that everyone had invested a lot of time and energy into their passions, but part of that was still interacting with the world. And that’s fucking brilliant.”

Trish Milines-Dziko made my little Geek heart sing when she told us “This was my first experience at Gnomedex and it far surpassed anything I thought it would be. My colleagues attended last year and didn’t really give a description that matched what I saw when I walked in the door, so I felt like I was looking through fresh eyes.

Chris is extremely personable and was really hands on – unlike some other conference hosts who think they’re just too good for the little people. Every single person involved with the conference was upbeat and knew how to treat folks.”

Larry Wu echoes the sentiment I keep hearing from attendees when he says: “I have never been to a conference where the atmosphere is about collaboration instead of competition. I was impressed with the openness and friendliness of the attendees, and the broad range of super high quality presentations.”

What did YOU take home in your heart from Gnomedex this year? Leave us a comment and share your story with us.