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The Official Las Vegas PubCon Thread
All of the news and updates from Vegas, Baby.

 2:59 pm on Nov 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

-> -> Post all of your comments, updates, tidbits and info in this thread! <- <-

It's time for PubCon #10, the WebmasterWorld Search and Internet Marketing Conference. We're in Las Vegas and it's time to kick things off.

PubCon is not the time to be shy - it's the time to get it in gear and have some fun. All of us were new to PubCon at some point or another, so if it's your first time, never fear! Just march up to people, introduce yourself, and start talking. This is a friendly bunch of people. (I flew by myself internationally for PubCon #3 ... on my first evening there, I walked into a bar, sat down at a table and ended up talking with Brett Tabke, 2 admins, 3 mods and about 5 other people. I didn't get up from that table for about 4 hours and that alone was worth the cost of my trip ... not to mention fun fun fun!)

Executive Summary of PubCon

  • Don't lose your name badge ... you need it to get into everything.
  • Preregister for the lunches and parties or you'll be left out in the cold. (instructions below)
  • Have fun. Learn lots. Party like a rock star.

    PubCon FAQs

    What is PubCon?

    The Official Version
    WebmasterWorld's PubCon is an educational conference and industry trade show programmed specifically for web professionals and website site owners. Although our center piece is Search Engine Marketing, Whether your primary role is in web site marketing, corporate IT development, or as a technology business management, you will find something of value at PubCon (aka: Publishers Conference). It is also designed to be fun and entertaining with ample opportunity for quality networking. More here: [pubcon.com...]

    The Unofficial Version
    This is THE place to hang out, have fun, and learn from the people who know stuff. Nearly all of our incredible regulars from WebmasterWorld, including more than half of our moderators and administrators, hang out at PubCon. Google Engineers, industry innovators and stealth geniuses abound. You can learn more about webmaster stuff in an hour over a beer at this conference than you can imagine. And it's a blast.

    Where is it being held?

    We're at the Las Vegas Convention Center [lvcva.com].

    What are the dates and times of this event?

    The conference is November 15-17. Registration officially opens at 8am on Tuesday the 15th, the keynote begins at 9am, and things are going on all day.

    Where is everyone staying?
    The official conference hotel is the Renaissance Las Vegas [renaissancelasvegas.com].

    How do I find and hook up with fellow conference attendees?
    If you don't spot 'em at all hours, bleary eyed, in the nearest bar, you're not looking hard enough - look in the dark corners. Anywhere you find clumps of people all huddled up, throwing words around like "Jagger" "algo" and "sandbox," you'll know you're in the right place.

    Name badges are geeky, do I really need mine?

    Oh yeah, you really need it. First of all, we want to know who you are so we can talk to you! Second of all, your name badge is required for admittance to all events, including lunches are parties. No badge, no attendance. Seriously. Don't lose that thing, it's the golden ticket.

    What's going on at the conference?

    Check out the official PubCon website [pubcon.com] for all of the info about the conference.

    A list of the sessions and special events can be found at [pubcon.com...]

    There are some special lunches - one by Google and one by Yahoo!. Be sure to find the link to those lunches on the session grid [pubcon.com] and register for them - you must preregister to attend these lunches, but they are free.

    Yahoo! is hosting a party on Tuesday night ... but again, you need to preregister or they will NOT let you come in, and I guarantee you won't want to miss it.

    The official PubCon party will be on Thursday from 1pm until "whenever." Brett will announce the secret location at some point during the conference, so keep your ears tuned in.

    What else do I need to know?

    Check in here to this thread - any extra announcements will be here, plus the chatter in this thread should tell you what you need to know.


    [edited by: Hawkgirl at 6:38 pm (utc) on Nov. 14, 2005]



     7:01 am on Nov 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I just arrived tonight and was pleasantly surprised when I got to the hotel. Nothing like the one in New Orleans. My room is very nice with an LCD HDTV, beautiful bathroom with a separate shower and tub, a cordless phone and very nice decor.

    To get here you can pick up a shuttle bus at the airport right outside the baggage claim for $5. Go out of the door next to carousel 6 in the baggage claim area and go to the booth to the right of the door. Nice people and fast service to the hotel.

    No crappy wireless connection here! The rooms have RJ45 connectors. One problem... they won't let you connect to Exchange servers. I spent half an hour on the phone with their network support people with no resolution. If I come up with one I'll let everyone know.

    I'm impressed Brett... you did a good job on this one!

    Can't wait to see everyone!


     5:17 pm on Nov 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I will be arriving in Vegas at 5PM... Thanks for the great info for a shuttle.


     1:47 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    >> I'm impressed Brett... you did a good job on this one!

    I've been hearing about how top notch this place is. Feel bad for not being able to make it, specially after having given Brett a earful about the New Orleans hotel / location.

    Oh well, Sydney it is. :)


     4:38 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    The HDTV in the room is a nice touch


     5:27 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    The best part it there aren't any damned casinos in this hotel. It's nice to get away from those things when you want and that's not easy to do in vegas.


     5:31 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I'm sure the lack of casinos is the worst part for some others. ;-)


     5:37 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I'm flying out there early tomorrow morning but still havn't received anything regarding my badge.

    Is this something we get once we get there?

    Do we have to print out an email to show them to get in? or can we simply give our names and they will find it on the list?

    I can't believe in less then 10 hours I am flying out to Vegas but don't have a special email or badge. Help!


    - DSLxp


     6:30 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    You can bring a photo ID or a confirmation email from when you signed up and we'll take care of you at the door. No ID or no proof of registration will be a problem ... so make sure you can prove who you are. :) Cheers, see you tomorrow!


     6:32 am on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Thanks Hawkgirl, see you there!


     3:09 pm on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Trust me, if somebody wants to find a casino, they can.


     4:21 pm on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    LOL, woop

    After a few hours in this town you fell as if when you flush a urnal, that wheels should spin around.


     7:25 pm on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    After a few hours in this town you fell as if when you flush a urinal, that wheels should spin around.

    Now there a patent idea! haha I'll bet casinos would jump all over that! I hope the urinal jackpot wouldn't be so high that people would forget what they are doing and jump around to celebrate!

    So far the conference is going well. Good quality sessions again. definitely worth the trip!


     9:20 pm on Nov 15, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Conference Update:

    Just about everyone has arrived and the place is packed! The sessions are running on time and the Expo Hall is hopping.

    Thanks to everyone for your patience this morning as we worked out a few kinks at the Registration booth! (Note to self: The alphabetized name tags need to go A-B-C-D-E-F-G-and so on, not the more creative way we had it arranged.)

    Free Wireless Internet access is being offered in all of the WebmasterWorld conference areas free of charge courtesy of MSN Search. Look for the signs around the conference areas with login information.

    Free Email Stations are set up in the Expo Hall, also courtesy of MSN Search.

    Yahoo! YPN lunch is currently going on - be sure to grab a sandwich or salad and learn about the new program.

    Also, make sure you're around for this afternoon's 3:30 pm super session - Blogging for Fun and Profit - it should be a really interesting one with lots of tips to improve your blog.

    Don't forget, if you haven't RSVP'ed for the Yahoo! party tonight at PURE nightclub, do so now. They won't let you in without preregistration [pubcon.com] and your conference name badge.

    Questions or problems at the show? Come find one of the show staff and we'll do our best to help you out.

    See you tonight at the Yahoo! party!


     6:14 pm on Nov 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

    So how was the party?

    I never got a confirmation, and after my experience with Overture, wouldn't trust Yahooto handle things properly if I showed up. This is so like Yahoo to spend a bunch of money to get our good side, and botch it.

    I got a lot out of yesterday sessions!


     6:35 pm on Nov 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Conference Update

    The Yahoo! party was excellent - PURE is a really cool club. (Personally I'd never be brave enough to put white furniture in a nightclub - but clearly it works for them ... and certainly the furniture matched Elvis, who was spotted walking around.)

    Brett and Matt Cutts of Google had an excellent "Coffee Talk" session this morning. Unfortunately, I could only be in the session for about fifteen minutes - but they were a packed fifteen minutes! A few tidbits from Matt's talk ...

  • Google is working on ways for the algo to distinguish the original content in a duplicate content scenario. I'd love to be a fly on the wall as they figure out how to do that.
  • Are there hand tweaks of the algo? Yes and no. According to Matt, there are no increases of PR by hand - yet there can be penalties by hand. Hmm. I liked how Matt talked about humanpower and whether or not it can be scalable. Obviously the computer power and algo work is very scalable, but if human power (such as the editors who scout stories for Google News) can be scalable, then it can (and ought to?) be used as a good venue for quality work.
  • A few thoughts by Matt on autolinks and smart tags ... his opinion is that they're good when used the way they're intended (as purely a helpful gesture to get people to where they need to go on the web quicker and more efficiently).

    I heard a few more tidbits I'm keeping to myself ... and I'm bummed I missed the rest of his talk. Now I need to go corner him and see if he'll tell me more!

    Now it's time for more sessions ... plus another day of the Expo Hall.

  • techstyled

     8:55 pm on Nov 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I miss PubCon so much. I haven't been since Boston several years ago.

    My son's birthday is November 15 and we always vacation on or about the last week June / first week July.

    This happens to coorespond precisely (at least these last few years) with the 2 PubCons each year.


    Hope to see all y'all at one soon, and grats to those that are there now. And if you can be there but aren't, shame on you... :)


     9:38 pm on Nov 16, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Sugestion for next time:

    Make the names a little larger and the company names larger. The name of the event can be smaller, we already know we are at PubCon.


     12:10 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Annoucement about updated Google sitemaps


     2:20 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Has Google said anything about their inability to purge supplemental results?


     3:42 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Excellent day today. So much info. Best session yet was the one in the dining room where Matt answered specifics for over an hour. Originally it started in the passage but was moved - WAS CAUSING A FIRE HAZZARD!


     6:17 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I should get a "I SURVIVED PUBCON X" t-shirt after partying with this pack of animals last night at the Yahoo bash and I'm not the only one based on how green a few people looked this morning.


    I loved every minute of it ;)


     6:30 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I wonder how a person would notice the color of other people if he's borderline snoring?


     9:03 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    inability to purge supplemental results

    It looks like supplementals are here to stay--at least for now. According to Matt Cutts, it's just a crawl that isn't done that often--and they're not too much different than the 'regular' results.

    Yahoo! party

    PURE is great. Great party, great drinks, great food, great atmosphere.

    It's just too bad that no one bothered to say that there was actually a dress code. Those caught wearing 'unacceptable attire' were promptly thrown out.


     9:28 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    It's just too bad that no one bothered to say that there was actually a dress code. Those caught wearing 'unacceptable attire' were promptly thrown out.

    Yup, I was one of them ushered out at 10 when they let the natives into the club.

    Yahoo threw a great party but not telling us about this little issue in advance was a HUGE negative IMO. The dress code issue was "shoes" - they seemed to allow black sneakers but anyone with white sneakers got booted out the door. I already knew this was going to happen as I was BS'ing with a security guy for a couple of minutes and he told me about that little issue but it was still annoying when it happened.

    I wonder how a person would notice the color of other people if he's borderline snoring?

    Were we sitting next to each other today? LOL

    I wasn't borderline snoring at all, I think I was clearly snoring when a couple of monotone speakers took the podium and lulled me to sleep with that soothing tone, but that was more a problem of 3 hours sleep again for the second night in a row than anything else.


     11:11 am on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    I had a great time at PubCon although I wished some of the presentations would have been more updated for those of us that went to NOLA (i.e. blog presentation) earlier this year... seemed to be a few of the same exact presentations. I am curious if they do the same at SES as well?!?


     2:42 pm on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    Has Google said anything about their inability to purge supplemental results?
    Matt commented during the Coffee Talk session that Google still had some work to do on the whole 301, duplicate content, supplemental pages issue.

     2:43 pm on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)


    Anything on Canonicals? non-www? Sites diving due to non-www indexing.

    His own site having non-www problems?


     3:06 pm on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    The impression I got from Matt was that it's all part of the same mess Dayo, and that the Jaggers will have little impact. It IS being addressed but no time frame was suggested.

    He was very vague and short on specifics. If Google publicly or officially admits to errors, there could be liability issues I suppose.


     3:30 pm on Nov 17, 2005 (gmt 0)

    He was very vague and short on specifics.

    Is there a complete transcript of his coffee session anywhere on WebmasterWorld?

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