How to Register to Attend Every COMMON Annual Meeting and Exposition features special "early
bird" savings on registration fees, so sign
up to attend as soon as possible. The early bird deadline is April 2, 2009 - save $200 and register before this date.
Once you decide to attend the COMMON
Annual Meeting and Exposition, there are several ways to register.
You can register on-line - just click on the Pricing and Registration link at the top of this page.
Staying in Touch
Once your registration has been processed,
COMMON may send you e-mail updates to keep you
informed. In the past, we’ve used these
communications to let attendees know about breaking
news related to the conference.
Depending on how soon before the conference we
receive your registration, COMMON may mail out
your attendee badge and other materials, or we may
ask you to collect those items when you register
on-site at the conference.
COMMON Annual Meetings have been recognized by the
IT industry as one of the highest-quality
education conferences when ranked by usefulness
and industry expert presentation and
participation. One of the reasons COMMON
Annual Meetings receive high ratings is simply the
breadth of education session offerings: they offer five days of leading Power Systems-related education on IBM i, AIX, Linux and PowerVM topics.
Navigating successfully through a conference requires planning.
We want you to get the most out of the COMMON
Annual Meeting and Exposition. The information on this Web page will help you plan
your week—and return home from the Annual Meeting
ready to apply what you’ve learned.
Visit the Website Early and Often About 16 weeks prior to the Conference, COMMON
begins posting conference information on its website. In addition to general information about the
host city for the Annual Meeting, some basic Course of
Study and session abstract (course description)
information will be available. While some of the
information will be preliminary at this stage, the
information is updated continuously. The closer
the Annual Meeting starting date, the more detailed
the information will become–so be sure to visit www.common.org early and often.
Planning Your Course Schedule About eight weeks prior to the Conference,
detailed education session and Lab information
will be posted on COMMON’s website. To ensure a
successful and productive week at the Annual Meeting and Exposition,
it is critical that you review the session grids
on the website and prepare a schedule for
yourself before you arrive at the Annual Meeting. (See
the "How to Read a Session Grid" section
for important details.)
Computer Labs COMMON’s computer labs are extremely popular, because
they provide the hands-on training you need to accomplish
similar projects at your company. Labs are scheduled
Monday through Thursday of the conference. You may
or open lab
– there is no
– first come,
labs are single
classes on a
single subject, and you stay from start to end. Open labs
offer multiple lab modules in the same room at the same
time, on a work-at-your-own-pace basis. With open labs,
you can come and go, and select as many or as few of the
lab exercises offered. All open labs are staffed with experts
to assist you. For a listing of all traditional and open labs, go
to www.common.org/sessions.html (click on the Labs tab)
Before & During the Conference
Odds and Ends Dress Code. The dress code for the
Annual Meeting and Exposition is casual. Close to conference time,
check local Internet sites for the host city to
find out what the average temperatures are,
and pack accordingly. Pack a light sweater or
jacket for temperatures that vary in meeting
rooms, and be sure to wear comfortable shoes!
Food. Cash food stations will be
available in the Exposition hall; snack and beverage
stations will be located at various locations in
the conference facilities. If you are attending
sessions into the evening, be sure to pick up a
snack during the day; most conference facilities
stop selling food after lunch.
Cyber Corner and Bookstore. Laptop
computers will be available for you at no charge
to check your e-mail while on-site. Please note
that the Cyber Corner laptops do not have floppy
drives but you can access the Internet from any of
them. Come prepared with instructions on how to
access your e-mail online.
also host a bookstore where you’ll find new
releases by COMMON speakers.
Restaurants and Sightseeing. Restaurant
and tourism information will be provided on-site
to assist with your post-conference activities.
GTCA: Guide to COMMON Acronyms
Over the years, COMMON has developed a
language of its own. With this
handy guide, you’ll know what to say when
someone at MoM asks if you met a SME at CUDS last
During the conference, you may hear acronyms
that aren’t included on this list.
BOFS = Birds-of-a-feather sessions
SET = Strategic education team
COS = Course of Study
CUDS = COMMON User Group Discussion Socials - now called iSocials
DSA = Distinguished Service Award
HOBO = Honorary board official
JAC = Judicial affairs council
LUG = Local user group
MoM = Meeting of the Members
SME = Subject Matter Expert
SUG = Sister user group
TLC = Tactical liaisons to curriculum
VPS = Vendor product session
YIP = Young iSeries Professional
How to Read a Session Grid To prepare your schedule roadmap, you will
need to be familiar with COMMON’s daily session
grids. In addition to being posted on the Website, session grids will also be published in each issue of COMMON Conference Daily, our on-site
newspaper. Please note that grids are subject to
change, and you should always check the latest
edition of the newspaper before heading to your
sessions each day.
To begin, you need to know that each day of the
conference is assigned a number and that all
sessions are keyed according to these numbers:
Sunday = Day 1
Monday = Day 2
Tuesday = Day 3
Wednesday = Day 4
Thursday = Day 5
COMMON’s grids are designed to show you an
entire day’s sessions at a glance. Horizontal
rows show the location of each session. Vertical
columns show time and day. Both location and time
have a two-digit code, and these combine to form a
four-digit Agenda number for each session.
Example: Session 32CS will be held on Day 3
(Tuesday) during the time
slot designated as #2, or 9:30 – 10:45 a.m. It
will be in the room designated "CS" (which is named on the grid).
You’ll find details about the room, including
location and capacity, in the left column of each
When planning your day, you can highlight each
session on the grid and will be able to tell at a
glance if you have overlapping commitments.
You can also create personalized grids online,
selecting specific sessions and special events you’re
interested in attending.
Your First Stop at the Annual Meeting and Exposition:
Even though you have pre-registered for the
Annual Meeting and Exposition, you must check in at the Registration
Desk on-site to pick up your conference materials.
Registration usually opens early on Sunday
morning, so be sure to register in time to attend
the Sunday afternoon conference events.
Special Sessions and Services for
COMMON offers a First-Timers’
Session on-site to provide an overview of what to
expect during the conference week. This Session will take place on Sunday afternoon. Also, you’ll
receive valuable tips on how to get the most out
of the conference. Check COMMON’s Website prior to the conference for exact dates and
The First-Timers’ Social offers a
chance to network with other members and
volunteers while you enjoy fun, food and prizes! The Social will be held on Sunday
afternoon, immediately following the First-Timers Session.
If you don't arrive in in time to attend the First-Timers' Session and/or Social, or you still have unanswered questions, there will be a First-Timers' table at the Sunday evening iSocial - Ask the Experts. The table will be manned by experienced COMMON volunteers, so you will have an opportunity to ask questions, or simply meet and network with other First-Timers.
Additionally, if you find that you have questions later on in the week, feel free to stop a COMMON volunteer and ask them, or go to the COMMON Headquarters counter located in the Registration area.
These sessions are not only informational, they
also offer the perfect opportunity to network and
make new friends with peers from all over the
country. So don’t miss these invaluable
You’ll receive a badge either in the mail or
when you register on-site. This badge is required
for entrance into all COMMON sessions and events,
including the First-Timers’ events. Your badge
should be worn at all times during the conference.
Key Sunday Sessions
Opening Session occurs on Sunday afternoon.
That will be your first opportunity to hear from
COMMON’s President, IBM
executives about industry developments and
announcements, and a keynote address. Don’t miss it.
The Exposition also opens on Sunday - the largest Power Systems-related solutions center in the world. Learn
about the latest in product developments from
technical experts at IBM and other exhibiting
vendors. Although the Annual Meeting runs through
Thursday, the product Exposition continues through
Tuesday only. So don’t miss the opportunity to
meet with technical experts and see product
demonstrations of the latest and greatest
high-tech solutions for your Power Systems-related challenges.
Networking and Information-Sharing
COMMON’s education sessions are outstanding.
But the conference attendees who take advantage of
COMMON’s informal networking sessions often take
back with them something the other attendees don’t:
answers to those tough IT problems that they’ve
been struggling with.
COMMON offers several sessions that allow you
to rub shoulders with technical experts from IBM
and other leading industry organizations. Be sure
to include iSocials (formerly known as COMMON User Group Discussion
Socials or CUDS), including the "Power Down - Main Event" on Thursday evening, in your schedule. There is a
special "Power Down - Ask the Experts" session
that allows you to meet with peers and experts in
a specific technical area. Check the session grids
on the Web site or in the daily on-site conference
newspaper for dates and times.
Check COMMON Conference Daily for
Life is sometimes unpredictable. And sometimes
unexpected changes in our instructors’ schedules
force us to make last-minute changes to sessions
and Labs. When you arrive at the Conference, be
sure to pick up that day’s COMMON Conference
Daily to check for any last-minute changes to the
sessions and Labs. Check the newspaper every day
during the Conference, because that is where you
will find all last-minute changes to the
Answers Are Available at the Conference Have questions during the conference? COMMON volunteers wearing ribbons are available and approachable; don’t hesitate to stop and ask one of them for help. You may also go to the COMMON Headquarters counter located in the Registration area.
COMMON is a volunteer-based organization. One
of the best ways to learn how the organization
works—and make new friends—is to contribute a
little time as a volunteer during or after the
conference. Open positions are posted on COMMON’s
Web site, or you can visit the onsite Headquarters Counter during the conference to see if
there are any opportunities that match your skills
Check back often as we continue to add more information and details about this exciting conference event.