Once again, the event was completely sold out, with approximately 150 participants in attendance. This year's Meetup Day, 'Reloaded', was both innovative and interesting, with a few introductions and one exclusive surprise.
The new feature, themed areas, was received very positively and very well used. At five stations, staffed by experts from consulting and management, visitors took part in informal discussions on subjects that customers had selected in advance. Topics included both the practical, such as automation of tests, and strategic questions regarding digital customer communication today and in the future.
Customer lectures from notable institutions were once again a central part of the program. Companies such as the Die Techniker (health insurance), Gothaer Versicherung (insurance), Basler Versicherungen (insurance) or Printus, a mail order company, shared their wisdom with the crowd. In total, they all provided an open and honest look at the planning and processes for their newest customer communication or Customer Communication Management (CCM) projects, including any challenges encountered and their solutions.
In the insurance industry, in particular, it was clear how important it is to consolidate IT infrastructure. Consolidation is the replacement of the text and output systems used and 'inherited' over the course of company history with a unified, central system for customer communication. The clear conclusion, from numerous calls for proposals and market analysis carried out by customers both old and new, was that the M/ Series is currently one of the outstanding systems on the market for Customer Communication Management. A decisive factor, in addition to the consolidation of IT infrastructure, is the expansion of digital communications.
The agenda included the short description "New developments". But hidden behind this generic headline was the first public presentation of the newest member of the M/ Series product family: mIQ (a preliminary code name, pronounced 'Mike'). mIQ is an entirely newly developed editor for the M/ Series.
Thanks to HTML 5 technology, the editor offers the full functional scope of a rich client platform, and is equipped with a user interface crafted in accordance with the latest design principles, combining efficiency and minimalism. After the initial speechlessness was over, this new product was discussed avidly in the round tables held after the announcement.
The final talk was held by kühn & weyh Consulting, and focused on barrier free documents. It was based on the experiences of two customer projects that are already using the M/ Series to produce PDF/UA documents.
"Incredibly informative event, very friendly." We have to agree wholeheartedly with this quote from a participant, and of course, once again, the evening program was a major contributer. This time, it was held in the Wodan Halle in Freiburg.
In addition to guitar played at a virtuoso level by Ingmar Winkler, the Freiburg double act "Acoustic Instinct" took the crowd by storm with their beatboxing, that is drum and percussion rhythms created solely using the human voice. The highlight of the evening: the "Song of a dot matrix printer, accompanied by a washing machine".
Even the most exciting Meetup Day has to come to an end. Participants were invited to take part in a luxurious lunch buffet before heading home. We already have participants registered for next year.