With more than 1,300 people expected to attend, this year's Infotec Conference could be the biggest in the event's history.
The educational and networking event for information technology professionals and students runs Tuesday and Wednesday at the CenturyLink Center Omaha.
New features include a conference track for marketing professionals, a quiz bowl-style competition, a LAN party gaming room and a display of two Tesla luxury electric cars.
While most businesses and individuals use information technology every day, they don't always understand how the systems work and how to best put them to use, conference director Dave Vankat said.
That's where this year's theme of “Magic Explained” comes in.
“A lot of people think IT is magic,” Vankat said. “What we try to do is pull back the curtain and let people experience some of that magic. A lot of the people that go to Infotec are those people that can help them understand that.”
Breakout sessions designed to demystify IT include discussions of cybercrime threats, how companies are using “big data,” best practices for social media in business, uses for iPads in industries and when a business should move data to the “cloud.”
One presenter will perform an actual magic show — with a technology focus. Keynote speaker Marco Tempest is an illusionist who uses computer-generated imagery as part of his show.
Other keynote talks will come from Ben Vu, a founder of SkyVu Entertainment animation studio and Battle Bears mobile game, and Jeremy Gutsche of trendhunter.com, who will talk onsparking innovation in times of change.
This is the fifth year the conference has been sponsored by the AIM Institute. The Omaha-based nonprofit organization, founded in 1992, provides programs and training surrounding information skills, careers and literacy.
Register at infotec.org. The conference costs $350 with discounts for AIM members.
Watch a video preview of the 2013 Infotec conference.
Jeremy Gutsche offers a preview of his Infotec speech.