Even as the Greater Houston RUG is rescheduling its 2007 conference — the new dates are March 14-15, 2008 — the group might be tilling an bigger plot for a comprehensive HP 3000 gathering. While the first MPE/iX International Conference now gets six extra months to bloom, another healthy 3000 plant might put down roots on that same March weekend outside of Houston.
Ed Stein of the CAMUS user group, a hotbed of HP 3000 ERP users, checked in to report on a healthy conference a few weeks ago for his group. Stein, a CAMUS board member, said that CAMUS is thinking of an even bigger HP 3000 event for next year — by combining the CAMUS meeting with the MPE/iX conference.
Our CAMUS conference went pretty well last month. Our board of directors decided to keep CAMUS going and to have another conference next year, and probably also in 2009. One idea that we had was to hold our conference in Houston alongside your conference, given that most of our membership is HP 3000. Houston is also a good central location for our members and is accessible by most airlines.
It's not exactly rocket science to combine user groups in a single event. After all, that's how HP got the HP Technology Forum started: by combining the Encompass user group event with those of the Tandem (ITUG) and OpenView Forums. "Our thinking is that there could be strength in numbers," Stein said in a message to the GHRUG board.
But the alliance calls another to mind. In the 1990s the Texas-area RUGs — there were four at the time — gathered as the All-Texas RUG meeting, with conferences in Galveston, Houston, Austin and the Dallas Metroplex. Other than those confabs — crafted in a much different era than today's transition times — no two user groups in the HP 3000 community have ever shared a venue to expand their offerings for both sets of members.
While that rescheduling might have been a disappointment to some in the 3000 community, GHRUG's dedication to a quality conference opens the door for a bigger gathering of your birds of a feather.