Welcome

MediaCamp Edmonton – A Great Story!

May 3rd, 2010

346 words = <2 min. reading time
Reason for reading: to learn more about events we’re involved in
and to learn more about an event you may want to attend or sponsor!

So, how does someone who once hated computers and ‘didn’t even know how to turn a computer on’ start a business like Pondside Digital Media? I would love to tell that story but there’s a more important story to tell in this post :) …and by the way, when you hear the answer to the question above, you’ll see how it ties in to my involvement with MediaCamp.

MediaCamp is happening in Edmonton, Alberta on May 8, 2010.  What is MediaCamp? So glad you asked! :)

MediaCamp is a unique event, a ‘meeting of the minds’ opportunity for traditional (mainstream) media and new media to get together, along with ‘coders’ who know how technology works.  It’s an opportunity for education and, potentially, for collaboration to arise during the one-day event which could well mature into new possibilities and new relationships between the parties involved. I’m very excited about it!

Everything Pondside has ever done has been through the use of new media. Their flagship offering in 1995, the on-line magazine known as Alberta Equine …On-Line, had no print ties and never has.

This amazing event will take place as an ‘unconference’ which means other than the opening panel of four or five speakers, there are no scheduled presentations! Anyone attending is given the chance to come up with a ‘talk’, have it placed on the grid by the gridmaster, resulting in the opportunity to speak their piece.  In addition to this, there will be ‘Lightning Talks’ which are opportunities for speakers with an innovative idea to pitch it to anyone present in a very short time (3-5 min. or so).

If you want to see more about this event and who is registered, go here: http://mediacampedmonton.eventbrite.com/

This is an interesting opportunity to meet and hear from innovative thinkers in the media sphere, gathered in one spot for this event.

If you can’t attend but would like to be involved in some way, your sponsorship of the event would be appreciated and your logo would be viewed by many.

I hope you consider attending and, if so, come seek me out. I’ll be the one looking excited but a little unsure of what I should be doing; after all, an unconference is another new experience for me!

Sylvia Schneider
President, Pondside Digital Media

Coming Full Circle

March 29th, 2010

610 words = <3 min. reading time
Reason for reading: perhaps to learn more about the Internet
and perhaps learn something about us that you didn’t know

The Web is an interesting entity isn’t it?  Don’t YOU find it interesting?  I certainly do but then again, that’s where I live, breathe, eat and (almost) sleep.

In 1996 I used to do a daily write-up on a Website; a ‘log entry’ if you will, about that day’s worth of site additions, and other interesting tidbits that happened to pass through my mind. It was on a page with a lovely ‘coiled notebook page’ background image – very folksy :-)  As a matter of fact, I think what made it so popular at the time was the familiar chord that coiled notebook page image struck in the minds of people who had their feet firmly planted on terra firma but who were taking the plunge into the unknowns of cyberspace; it made them feel more ‘at home’!

We made a major change to the site in about the year 2000, and the one thing that was dropped was the daily log entry. As the programmer pointed out, I spent a lot of time making that entry and it didn’t seem necessary for, it was fairly obvious through date stamps what had changed on the site and when.

I kind of missed making those entries, and learned later that many of the site visitors really missed reading those thoughts too! (Who knew?)

By and by, people began talking about ‘blogs’. Hmmm… “What’s a blog?” I wondered. Hah! A ‘Web log’ or ‘blog’, for short.  So basically I had been keeping a blog but wasn’t anymore. …and then I gave it up because it took up too much time! (So far ahead, it appeared as if I was behind! *sigh*)

I find it interesting that, when I first began using the Internet (really wasn’t called the Web yet as it was only ‘bulletin boards’, usenet newsgroups and listservs) it was all about ‘being social’.  It was fun, interesting, and educational and, as I recall, could also be a cumbersome process; with listservs for instance, someone would send out a message, you could read and respond at which point everyone else received the response and so on …but hey, it worked, and it was great!  You could share your thoughts with like-minded people (and not so like-minded! …I still have fond memories of ‘flame wars’) from all over the world and it was very social.

I recall being part of that first wave of users that were so horrified when the Web started to go ‘public’.  What we ‘had’ seemed special and it began to be lost in a sea of brochure-ware Web advertisements for everything and anything that was out there! I’m sure it was about that time that everyone discovered they could make words on a Web page ‘blink’ (the bane of a Web developer’s creative existence!). The dotcom-boom-bust came along and with it many of those first Websites disappeared (along with their blinking words – yayyy!)

Any of us that were there early on, and knew and understood the value of the social aspect of the Web, understand that the advent of Web 2.0 and all the wonderful social media tools that have been developed means we’re coming full circle back to what we cherished about the Internet to begin with!

I love the Web and am passionate about all the Internet solutions that can be achieved for people, organisations, associations, charities and businesses!

I’ll quit raving now and let you say your piece. If you were one of those people who used to enjoy that coiled notebook page or one of those who enjoyed bulletin boards, usenet groups and listservs, please cater to my nostalgia and leave a comment. Thanks!

Sylvia Schneider
President, Pondside Digital Media

A Reason to Blog

March 18th, 2010

225 words = <1 min. reading time
Reason for reading: to learn why we’re
blogging and perhaps find your own reason to have a blog

How is it that we encourage our customers to keep blogs yet we don’t have one ourselves? How indeed!  Needless to say, it’s high time we had a blog on this site and now is as good a time as any to begin!

We encourage our customers to keep a blog for many reasons, not the least of which is to put a human face on their business.

As our company has grown and we have more and more customers, we’re not in touch as much as we should be.  Let’s see if we can start to change that.

Everyone likes to do business with people they know and feel comfortable dealing with.  If you’re reading this and you’re not one of our customers, you may be here looking for a reason to choose us to do business with.  After all, the YellowPages can only tell you ‘so much’ about a company.

So, for our customers new and old, and those of you looking to see if you should consider our services, we’re hoping this blog will give you some insight into who we are.

I look forward to sharing and to your comments on posts!

Sylvia Schneider
President, Pondside Digital Media