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I’ve Been There, Done That, But Should You Do Tech Coast Conference 2017?

It’s tomorrow. It’s at the Prime Osborne Center, but what is the Tech Coast Conference 2017 all about? What’s the mission of the event? How tech is it really? And who should go? This year, I’m not. I was there the last two years, and participated about as much as you could. I did a video and shot interviews in 2016. In 2015, I was breakout room speaker on the subject of SEO. Mine was a good room, and my audience was engaged and learned from me. It was satisfying. But it wasn’t what you would call “bleeding-edge” tech.

No, TCC as it is known, barely scratches the surface of what’s going on in the tech world this minute, but that’s not a crime. There’s another tech event, One Spark, that one thinks of when one thinks of new ideas in Jax. Yes, they’re two different ideas and events, but maybe it’s time for them to merge and make this one fresh and exciting event instead of two.

Let’s leave that there for now, and we’ll come back to pick it up later. August 22 is Tech Coast Conference 2017 day, so let’s take a look at some of the sponsors and see what we can learn about what we can expect tomorrow, and see if it’s going to be worth it.

First off, the mission, or driving reason for their existence, from TCC could use some guts in it. TCC is the work of the IT Council of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce. Here’s their page for the event.     

So on the website is the mission: provide a forum for blah, blah, blah to discuss and share advances. Phtttt. Good mission statements are unique. This one could be for any other medium-sized market in the country. It also lacks a “greater good” benefit outside of saying there is one. Jax is not going to be the next Silicone Valley, but as one speaker put it last year, it can be as good as we can make it.

Now, I know the amount of work that goes into putting it on Tech Coast Conference 2017 first hand, and there is plenty of good people volunteering and working for money to get it done. My hat’s off to them and thank you. Here’s what they have to say about it and why they’re doing it:

The JAX Chamber IT Council is showing and promoting the culture of innovation and creativity, talent and expertise and the growing concentration of IT businesses that advance Jacksonville as a dynamic hub for technology development and employment.

Read into it and Tech Coast Conference 2017, and it doesn’t take an IT genius to figure out that showing and promoting a culture are two separate things. The fact is that you need one thing to promote a culture of IT advancement: money. Seed money to be a bit more exact. Or do you? Maybe you need ideas. That sounds like One Spark to me. One Spark is cool, but not at Tech Coast Conference 2017.

Here’s a list of the Tech Coast Conference 2017 sponsors:

Check Point – Software Technologies




Dex Imaging



PRI Productions

isthmus software

But what about the exhibitors? The folks that really make the conference and have all the free hand-outs? Don’t know, they’re not given any advance press on any site I visited, which is a no win-no win for everyone involved.

The speakers? Heavy on security, as you can imagine. Cloud stuff, work flow management, and a voice-over guy speaking on value with a capital V.

If you are going, you can expect to pay$50 at the door. Today may be the last day to get a $25 ticket, but act fast.

I hope the IT Council of Jax Chamber finds this year’s Tech Coast Conference 2017 event successful and that some great new idea comes to them for next year. Maybe mash it up with One Spark to make it more relevant and more exciting? I will send that great idea along to my friends on the inside and see what happens. One Spark is not happening in the city this year. It will be held inside EverBank Stadium. That’s right, home of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

one spark image



One Spark is having financial issues it would appear. They’re definitely going mainstream and more business-like with a closed quarters arena setting. They were supposed to be my booth partners at a recent Tech event in Atlantic Beach, but no one showed from their org. Why? Because there is no one. This town is in love with One Spark, so it the press, but it needs help to survive and change is good. TCC is in the same boat. Good, people like it enough, but if it went away next year, no one would miss it.

Let’s think about combining these two good events into a great one. Make great ideas and the tech that goes into them fun and interesting for everyone, not just IT and cloud guys, who don’t go anyway.


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