By Rafael Fremd

Collision is North America’s fastest-growing tech conference. It brings together the people and companies redefining the global tech industry. 

We’re so happy we chose to be a part of this epic event by both attending and sponsoring it.

A new mindset. 

We’ve sponsored many conferences including Ruby Conf, Node Summit, and Railsconf. They each focus on specific technologies, and as such are a great way to discover new developments in a relatively narrow set of topics, as well as new team members, hacks, and networking connections.

We went to Collision with a completely different mindset that reflected our company’s shifting business model. Until recently we’ve focused a majority of our time on programming and consulting with clients to provide technical recommendations. More recently our approach has become more holistic as our clients’ needs and our capacities have grown.

Development work is still at the heart of what we do, but over time we’ve developed many more competencies. We now also work with our clients on product ideation, and design, while considering and analyzing their broader organizational and competitive context. In short, we don’t simply create products – we create the right products.
This shifting organizational approach demands a new mindset for what we look for in conferences that moves beyond the purely technical to the innovative and solution-oriented.

With its expansive variety of attendees and sponsors across industries and disciplines, Collision was the perfect fit.

The conference experience.

3 days. 30,000 attendees. 1,000,000 square feet.

We knew these numbers going in, but you have to experience such a massive scale to truly appreciate it. Booth after booth overflowing with new and exciting ideas. A dozen stages buzzing with light shows and crowds. Countless workshops ranging from meditation to server deployment. The airy hum of countless conversations and activities reverberating around the cavernous interior of the Enercare Center.

From the moment you entered the sprawling event space, the sense of engagement and excitement was palpable.
Our booth had visitors nonstop. CEOs, CTOs, entrepreneurs, politicians, lawyers, students, developers, vendors – they all eagerly stopped by to chat with us. With so many visitors, our free gifts flew off our tables!
Our visitors were kind and their conversations were engaging. So while we did not see many talks on the main stages, as we said previously, the “best talks didn’t happen on stages but in the halls and booths.”We came back with lots of new leads and just as many new ideas, spurred by everything we saw and learned. Unexpectedly, we also walked away with a network of people ready to help us expand our operations into countries across the globe. We may not make that move quite yet, but the idea is exciting all the same!

We loved Collision for many reasons: an utterly lovely host city (we miss you Toronto!), new experiences, and the chance to see exciting new technologies and ideas. What made it truly incredible though was the people. To see such a diverse group of people across so many disciplines coming together to share their experiences and ideas so enthusiastically and thoughtfully was eye-opening.

The future is looking good.

Optimism is more than a mindset – it’s a driver for real, concrete changes in the world.
Companies like ACORN are born of optimism about what science can do, and by extension, what people can achieve. They collect your hair, transform it into stem cells, and then cryopreserve it for you to use decades from now when medical science has advanced far enough to utilize those young, healthy cells to create new organs, limbs, medicines, and more.
Countries, while seemingly impersonal for their sprawl and scope, are ultimately comprised of people who are optimistic too. Many countries had stands at Collision promoting investment, cross-country collaboration, and offering legal, logistics and tax consulting. They were as excited as any startup co-founder to share their ideas and discuss their homelands’ potential.

The optimists of the world spur change through their passion and vision for something better than the status quo, and Collision brought thousands of them together to share ideas and experiences. It gave us a glimpse of what waits in store for the world writ large, and we couldn’t be more excited.

Thanks, Collision. See you soon.