Howdy from Texas, y'all!!
MediaPortal (MP) put in its first trade show appearance last weekend at the Big Design 2011 conference in Dallas, TX. With the help of many MediaPortal users & the friendly staff at Big Design, it was a big success. It was held at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Addison, a suburb of Dallas, and provided table space in the main hall. Each conference room was located off the hall giving heavy traffic to each of the exhibitors throughout the day. MediaPortal was located at the top of the stairs, right outside of the keynote conference room. With such a great location the MP table had extremely high visibility and was able to spend a lot of time catering the curiosity of others. Out of roughly 150 attendees, 40 vendors and numerous conference and hotel staff, over 200 paid a visit to the MediaPortal table.
The most shocking thing to me was how much fun I had. I really enjoyed meeting the other vendors and learning about their products/services. The most enjoyable moments were when demoing MP for visitors. Some were truly amazed by what MediaPortal could do and seeing them realize MP's personal potential was thoroughly pleasing. I hope others consider this if they ever think about running a booth for MP. It was a really good time and we reached quite a lot of people, some of whom installed MediaPortal overnight then came back the second day to chat about MP.
aMPdroid was almost as big a hit as MP itself because in the US if it's mobile, then it's hot. Everyone wants an app for that, and Diebagger has delivered. We were able to show off aMPdroid 0.7 at the show with great success on a 10" ePad. Everyone thought the remote control function was neat, but were more impressed when I talked about the then forthcoming version 0.8 with streaming. Some were so excited about the idea of being able to watch home local content on their mobile without having to pay a 3rd party service, that they were nearly doing backflips.
As you can imagine, Big Design's main focal issue was design itself. A lot of comments and feedback were left by visitors on how MediaPortal looked and felt, 95% of which were positive. Some left thinking that they could skin MP while others left thinking that they could help develop it in some way. One visitor offered to recommend a friend to help with ATSC coding for live TV in the US.
I believe the show was a great way to help spread the popularity of MediaPortal and cannot wait until my next chance to do so again. I encourage other MP users to do a show in their area, as I am sure you will have a great time and be a huge benefit to MediaPortal itself.