Spotlight On: #heweb11 speaker Chris Wilson

Chris WilsonChris Wilson (@cwilso): Open Web Guy. Microsoft IE Developer. Developer Advocate at Google, Inc.

Now add to those titles, “featured speaker at HighEdWeb 2011.

As we move closer and closer to October and Austin (just a few months left!), we took a moment to ask Chris a few questions to get to know him a little better.  Now we share with you a tiny peek into the mind of our favorite @cwilso ever, Chris Wilson:


  • What, in your opinion, has been the most important step/moment/discovery in the evolution of the Web?  When the browser become a programmable platform.  The early web was like a “choose your adventure” book.  In comparison, the web today is an interactive multi-player online adventure experience.
  • Favorite toy as a child? A radio-controlled robot
  • Favorite toy now? The internet, of course!
  • If you weren’t working in the Web, would you be doing? Scuba diving instructor, photographer, beach bum. I also love cooking!
  • What inspires you in your work? I’m amazed by what people come up with built on top of the Web platform — the rise of mash-up patterns and real-time data analysis that helps us see patterns we could never see before. I’m inspired when I can figure out where a limitation is on the web and remove it.


HighEdWeb 2011 Registration is Open

We’re really pleased to announce that registration is now open for HighEdWeb 2011, to be held October 23-26 in Austin, TX — the conference created BY and FOR higher education Web professionals.

Gain Real Value for Your Professional Development Dollars…

In attending HighEdWeb, you have access to:

  • more than 50 presentations by top speakers,
  • an acclaimed poster session,
  • general session keynote addresses,
  • breakfasts, lunches, and daytime snacks,
  • special events, excursions and networking opportunities, and
  • extensive conference materials, including digital session materials and podcasts.

… and Have a Great Time While You’re At It
At HighEdWeb, just as much learning and connection happens outside the official conference sessions as within them.  We provide a number of different opportunities for you to meet and network with other higher ed web pros in a relaxed atmosphere.  This year, special events include a welcoming reception, HighEdWeb: After Dark networking, and an excursion event to an Austin landmark – details to be released very, very, very shortly!

Submit Your Presentation Proposal
Have a great idea or experience you want to share? There’s still time to submit conference presentation proposals. We’re looking for a broad range of topics related to higher education and Web; for inspiration take a look at the HighEdWeb 2010 schedule.  Forty-five minute track session proposals are due by April 14, and poster proposals are due by August 15 — submit yours today. (And don’t forget: presenters receive a nice discount off of their conference registration!)

PRO TIP: Be sure to get your HighEdWeb 2011 registration in soon to make the most of special early-bird discount pricing ($125 savings off regular registration cost) – and don’t forget to reserve your room at the conference hotel, the Hyatt Regency Austin. In past years, the conference hotel has filled up fast so don’t delay!

Don’t Take Our Word For It: Why You Should Present at #heweb11

The call for presentation proposals for HighEdWeb 2011 (Austin, TX from October 23-26) is now open, and we had a great list going of all of the many reasons you should submit a proposal. Then we decided, why not let a few of your fellow higher ed Web pros (and past #heweb presenters) help share their own thoughts on the subject?

Reason to Present: You get to meet tons of great people and the conference discount is nice. #heweb #heweb11Presenting at HighEdWeb is a fantastic way to share experiences, gain visibility, build your network and be a part of a really strong professional community. As well, our presenters get a registration discount — and in the days of tough budget cuts, who couldn’t use that?!

Reason to Present: n all seriousness, present at #heweb11 for the personal challenge, to burnish the resume and to share knowledge and lead.As well, presenting at HighEdWeb is an outstanding professional development activity. When you present at the conference, you not only meet others who share in your professional passions, you also establish your own professional credibility and leadership.

Reason to Present: I've had some of the best web conversations *ever* in Milwaukee and Cincy. (with other presenters and attendees alike)HighEdWeb is a conference by and for higher ed Web professionals. It’s all about the community, coming together to share experiences, exchange ideas and, in the words of a past Best of Conference presenter, “build the future.”

Reason to Present: One word: Karaoke.Let’s be honest: at HighEdWeb we work hard and learn a lot — and have a great time doing so. It’s a community of people who genuinely enjoy both advancing the knowledge of our profession and also spending time together with like-minded collegues. Because in the end, we’re here because we love higher education and the Web. And karaoke is a nice bonus.

We hope you’ll apply to present at HighEdWeb 2011 — 45 minute track session proposals are due on April 14, and poster proposals are due on August 15., the Association, and You

As the Higher Education Web Professionals Association plans for HighEdWeb 2011 in Austin, TX, the launch of the new LINK magazine, and the unveiling of other exciting initiatives, the Association continues to hear from so many of you who want to become more involved with HighEdWeb. Thank you all for being so willing to share your time and talents; because of you, the Association continue to grow and change to meet (and help define) the future.

One major outstanding volunteer opportunity right now is a call for members of the Registration System Support Committee. The charge of this committee is to evolve and maintain the current HighEdWeb conference registration system. This custom-created system is already in place, but will need modifications to grow for future use, including helping to organize and manage HighEdWeb Regional Conferences. Members of this committee will be required to sign confidentiality agreements, as well as be well versed in and MicroSoft SQL Server.

If you are interested in being part of the Registration System Support Committee, please e-mail HighEdWeb board member Michael Hostad at mhostad{at}uwm{dot}edu. Please include the phrase “HighEdWeb Registration System” in the subject line and Michael will be in touch. The Association looks forward to working with you!

From the President: Get Involved with HighEdWeb

I hope everyone is surviving this busy fall academic session. As we move toward the end of the semester, I wanted to take this chance to share some news and updates from the Higher Education Web Professionals Association.

First, thanks to everyone for a very successful HighEdWeb 2010 – 500 or so higher ed Web pros came to Cincinnati and, together, created a conference of incredible professional and personal value! As we go through evaluations, we’re reading some great comments:

  • “Great presentations + speakers – all highly relevant to my job.”
  • “Very well organized. (HighEdWeb) has a lot of serious work happening in a fun atmosphere.”
  • “This is the best conference for my profession.”

And of course, we’ll be using *all* of your feedback to make next year’s conference another great experience for higher ed Web pros.

Speaking for next year: don’t forget to mark your calendars for HighEdWeb 2011 in Austin, TX October 23-26, 2011. Please consider participating as a presenter, and start talking with the Powers That Be now so you can take advantage of the early bird rate once it is announced. We will be doing a call for proposals in early spring, with registration opening in mid-2011.

I’m also pleased to share that HighEdWeb 2012 will be held in Milwaukee, WI. Details will be available about #heweb12 early in the new year, in line with our plan to announce conference location and other information two years in advance .

At the HighEdWeb 2010 conference, I was asked numerous times, “How can I get involved in HighEdWeb?” I’m pleased to report that there are a number of committees and opportunities – both established and new – in which you can get more involved. I gave a basic overview at the conference, but let me share again, in more detail.

Standing HighEdWeb Committees

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors governs the day-to-day efforts of the Higher Education Web Professionals Association. The Board focuses on the strategic direction of the Association, as well as fiscal responsibilities and operational duties. Information will soon be available on the process for applying to and being considered for Board membership

Conference Committee

The Conference Committee is responsible for the logistics, scheduling, and production of the annual HighEdWeb conference. A chairperson is chosen based on the conference’s location, then specific positions are appointed to bring together the many needed skill sets, including: marketing, vendor relations, photography, swag merchandise, entertainment planning, design, customer relations, etc. A breakdown of the position descriptions will be forthcoming. People interested in participating must be able to fulfill need of the committee position and be appointed by the Conference Committee chair.

Program Committee

The Program Committee helps select annual conference presentations, and members operate as Track Chairs in the conference session rooms. There are two track chairs per track (with five session tracks, a poster track, and a workshop track) plus an overall committee chair. The Program Committee also selects the best track and overall conference presentations. To be considered for membership on the Program Committee, one must have experience presenting at HighEdWeb and must be invited by the committee chair. The best way to get involved with this committee is to present and volunteer to assist the track chairs.

New HighEdWeb Committees

There are additional directives that the Board would like to initiate, providing both forward momentum for the Association, as well as offering new opportunities for involvement. Because of these needs, we are expanding the organization to include three new committees.

Registration System Support Committee

The charge of the Registration System Support Committee is to evolve and maintain the current HighEdWeb conference registration system. This custom-created system is already in place, but will need modifications to grow for future use, including helping to organize and manage HighEdWeb Regional Conferences. Members of this committee will be required to sign confidentiality agreements, as well as be well versed in and MicroSoft SQL Server.

Regional Support Committee

The Regional Support Committee helps manage official HighEdWeb Regional Conferences. The committee will be a reference and guide toauthorized region conference. The Regional Support Committee works closely with all of the approved Regional Conferences on logistics of scheduling, hosting, marketing, budgeting, identifying presenters, and planning.

HighEdWeb Online Magazine

The future HighEdWeb Online Magazine will be a central place where members will publish articles on topics of professional interest. HighEdWeb Online Magazine will need members in roles such as editor, designer, writer, organizer, etc. It is my personal hope to begin the magazine in 2011.

Next Steps

If you want to be more involved via one of the above opportunities, please e-mail me directly at frommelt{at}uwplatt{dot}edu. Please include the phrase HighEdWeb in the subject line to help gain my attention, and I will review and respond in the first week of November 2010.

Our goal is to allow multiple opportunities for people to participate in HighEdWeb: be a presenter, be a volunteer at a conference, be a writer for the magazine, host a regional conference, help maintain the registration system … help as you are able and be an even bigger part of HighEdWeb. The Board of Directors hopes these new opportunities continue to allow us all to focus together on the Higher Ed Web Professionals Association’s overarching mission:

“To advance Web professionals, technologies, and standards in higher education.”

I look forward to hearing from – and working with – you soon.