Past Event Highlights

NEWDA One Year Birthday Party!

Yes, it was one year ago that we met at Harvest Cafe to network, learn, share, and grow. OK, with the recession  hitting,  perhaps we did not grow in the bank account quite as much as we had hoped.  But NEWDA has sponsored several events and there are over 200 people who have joined the Linkedin group. Most importantly, NEWDA participants have worked together tow win and share business.

If you share this collaborative spirit of doing business, come join us!

Date: Tuesday, October 27, 2009  7 PM
Location: Harvest Cafe 40 Washington Street Hudson, MA 01749
Topic: Presentation on the new Massachusetts law to protect personal information that’s coming this March!
Presenter: Gavin Livingston, President at Bryley Systems
Format: Networking/Presentation/Q&A/Networking
Contact & Registration: Al Morel: (Pre registration appreciated!)
Cost: $20 at the door. Includes snacks. (Cash bar will be available.)

Did you know that this March, a new law requires that all organizations that have personal information on even one Massachusetts resident to protect this data? This presentation will detail how these new regulations will impact your business, and the clients that you may be advising.

Schedule: (All times are PM)
7:00 – 7:30 Register and networking
7:30 – 8:00 Presentation
8:00 – 8:20 Question & Answer
8:20 – 9:30 Networking

Hudson Mass Chapter of NEWDA (Hudson, MA)

Date: Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Location: 364 Main Street Hudson, MA 01749

Topic: Website Security and Why It’s Important

Presenter: Jonathan Tegg, Principal at Jonathan Tegg Web Development Services

Format: “House Concert” format. Free admission, bring something to eat, drink and share

Contact & Registration: Al Morel:


Schedule: (All times are PM)
7:00 – 7:30 Register and networking
7:30 – 8:00 Presentation
8:00 – 8:30 Question & Answer
8:30 – 9:00 Networking

We’ve finally found a way to properly merge video and Powerpoint on the web!

Here’s the March 25 presentation given by Jonathan Follett, president of  Hot Knife Design on Using Web Tools to Build Virtual Teams. This is essential information for anyone who finds themselves working with collaborators and clients in different geographic locations.

The video was produced by Jai Bradford of Soma Media Arts.  Since the video file was squashed down some to fit the size requirement of the video hosting vendor, this presentation does not do justice to the quality of the media that Jai shot, but you get the idea.

In addition to this presentation, we will be working with wordsmithing guru,  Jim Schakenbach,  of BIGWORDS Content Development  to develop a special e-Book to present how we created this presentation and how others can as well. Stay tuned…

If you were unable attend the January 13th meeting, you’re in luck! Kevin Skarritt’s presentation on Social Media and how to use it in your business is available for viewing online:

Downtown Chapter of NEWDA  (Boston, MA)

Topic: Flex, Air & Cold Fusion

Date: Thursday, March 12, 2009

Location: Silverscape 75 Broad St Boston MA

Time: 6 PM

Format: “Birds of a Feather Style” Dinner and discussions on the couches to talk about what attendees are working on in Flex, Air, and Cold Fusion and the latest applications, tools resources.

Price: None, but preregistration requested.

Dinner: Bring $8 – $12 if you would like to get Thai. Please place your order when you arrive.

Silverscape has free beer on draft!

Hudson Mass Chapter of NEWDA (Hudson, MA)

Date: Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Location: 364 Main Street Hudson, MA 01749

Topic: Using Web Tools to Build Virtual Teams

Presenter: Jonathan Follett, President, Hot Knife Design, Inc.

Format: “House Concert” format. Free admission, bring something to eat, drink and share Contact & Registration: Al Morel:


Schedule: (All times are PM)
7:00 – 7:30 Register and networking
7:30 – 8:00 Presentation
8:00 – 8:30 Question & Answer
8:30 – 9:00 Networking

Southcoast Mass Chapter (New Bedford/Fall River)

DATE: Saturday 1/24 at White’s of Westport:


SUMMARY submitted by event moderator: Andrew J Mazzarella of iMedia Solutions

Hello Everyone!

Thank you all for making the event last night. You each had excellent input and contributions to the discussion. I would like to especially thank Thomas Kraak of Seablick Consulting, Paul Costello of J. Paul Costello Associates Inc. and Joe Johnson of UPS Solutions Group for making the long treks.
As promised, the following is my attempt of a follow-up with the results last night’s roundtable talk.
Email Management:
The icebreaker email management question resulted in the general census that the challenges of email has not changed much and most of us use it as a constant primary communication tool. However we were enlightened with a few gold nuggets, which were; Boilerplate responses and great spam filtering with Hosted Exchange, Atheria, Cloudmerth, and Google Applications. I had trouble finding Atheria and Cloudmerth. Can we get URLs for those?
We started the Sub-Contracting topic with quick Cliff-notes of “The Long Hallway” by Jonathan Follet on A List Apart
The question to “failures and successes of sub-contracting” quickly revealed the prominent challenge of effectively communicating the scope of the project. We had folks, from both the project giving and project receiving sides, who quickly expressed their frustration with how the details of the jobs were either missed, miscommunicated or just not communicated at all.
The usual early pitfalls and burns of outsourcing for the first time left a bad taste and discouraging feeling with the majority.
There was one success story on the panel and we agreed that it was due to the fact a long-term relationship was forged long before the jobs were given to the sub-contractor.
These questions remain:

  • How do we effectively find and develop good sub-contractor relationships?
  • How do we effectively communicate the scope of our projects?
  • How do we effectively communicate our questions and concerns of the projects given to us?
It may seem that these are simple questions, but the fact is these are difficult challenges and the answers elude many aspiring new and established business owners of today. It would seem that the answers would be simple in today’s world of technology and information. This was a common thought in the group and made the perfect segway into the already planned next topic “Using Web 2.0 Tools”.
Some points from the Sub-Contracting topic were:
  • Effective communication from both sides of the project is key.
  • Always interview your potential vendors, getting work examples and proof of previous success for the task at hand.
  • It’s difficult to outsource concept work.
  • Finding a “match” is key.
  • Start small and budget for the investment of finding a match.
  • Be prepared to invest the time necessary.
  • Overseas hold a stigma of quick and dirty.
  • Working with those whom you can meet face-to-face is preferred.
  • The use of project management tools, within the panel, was limited.
Follow-up Note: A few post-discussion Google searches resulting an article called 18 Tips for Communicating with Contractors. It’s about home construction contracting but almost fits perfectly in web design and construction. Why not? One is physical and one is virtual.
Interesting Fact: Two folks on the panel had a similar goal for 2008, and that was to grow one’s business by developing effective sub-contracting models and strategies.

Using Web 2.0 Tools [wiki definition]
Wow, did this topic instantly ignite the panel. The night was going so well and this topic was so hot that Paul motioned to extend the night another hour with a resounding unanimous ”yes” from the panel!
We spent the first few minutes of our extended hour discussing Web 2.0 Services that could aid in project management, communicating and sub-contracting; however, the panel quickly turned its focus over to profiting from Web 2.0 Social Networking. Go figure.
Earlier in the evening we had spent some time talking about “stale” websites and clients frustrated with their unsuccessful websites. This was revisited in the Web 2.0 discussion, where there was inspiring talk about selling social networking services to “stale-site” clients, helping them to generate buzz and critical mass around their products and services. This raised so many questions that we unknowingly reserved the discussion for a later date and moved on. This talk did reveal a potential to bridge the gap between designers/client managers and developers.
A few drinks later, at the end of the invigorating and inspiring extra hour, we decided we should commit to learning these new Web 2.0 social networking services. We agreed that we will use some of these services to connect and share our experiences and newly found knowledge.  It was agreed that this would require a time investment; however, the majority felt that the reward can easily outweigh the sacrifice of our precious time, especially if we focus on how it will benefit our clients.
It was decided that we start with LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Those of us familiar with these services will help the newbies. We’ll then start by using these services to help each other grown in common interests in goals, hopefully leading to profits with clients and colleagues.