What happens when you get nearly 5,000 global visitors together to explore the latest in assistive technology and practical solutions for people with disabilities in educational, workplace, and social settings? Motivation and brainpower.
And it’s all aimed at helping people solve their pain points and live easier lives through innovative advances in technology.
I witnessed this amazing collaborative effort late last month at the 33rd CSUN Assistive Technology Conference in San Diego, the largest conference in the world for assistive technology, accessibility, disability services and innovations.
While our Equidox by Onix team has participated as a conference exhibitor since 2015, this was my first chance to experience the CSUN conference that colleagues, prospects and clients had told me so many great things about.
Our booth in the exhibit hall allowed us to share our Equidox document accessibility technology. But we also were there to listen and learn how we can better help people who use assistive technology to navigate the internet.
What I first noticed about the show, after I took in the amazing location — the Manchester Grand Hyatt — was that people come to this show from all over the world.
Because the show is sponsored by California State University, Northridge’s Center on Disabilities, many attendees were from California, however, we also met people from Australia, the United Kingdom, Sweden, France, Spain, Singapore, India, Canada and many other countries and states.
It was amazing to see so many people willing to take a 15- to 20-hour trip from the other side of the world to attend a conference.
We talked with people from all different industries. Executives from massive global conglomerates. K-12 and higher-ed educators from all sizes of colleges and universities, vocational schools, school districts and even schools designed specifically for students with disabilities. Director-level government representatives. Accessibility consultants. And individuals on fact-finding missions.
Everyone had one thing in common — they came to CSUN to learn more about the latest innovations and updates in assistive technology.
Being around so many like-minded people opened doors for partnerships with other companies that complement our Equidox solution. Since we are a niche product for PDF document accessibility, we have a natural synergy with many other companies who address broader web accessibility issues.
With such a diverse group of attendees conversing in the common language of accessibility, I felt reassured that we were in the right place with the same goal, finding solutions that positively affect the lives of people who need help solving pain points.
The idea of sharing and collaborating was off the charts. Even if our “pitch” about document accessibility wasn’t necessarily related to their area of expertise, visitors to our booth still wanted to hear about who we are and what we do in case they knew of someone who could benefit from our product and services.
Several attendees were sent to our booth by someone who knew about Equidox and felt that we had the best solution for PDF document accessibility. It’s great from a sales perspective to talk with someone who came to you based on a recommendation they trust.
People were quite receptive both to Equidox, the web-based PDF-to-HTML conversion tool and our PDF conversion services, as well as our ability to offer a combination of both. Our clients can use Equidox for in-house conversions and also send us their larger or more challenging documents that they don’t have the time or resources to complete before their deadline. This unique offering is both budget-friendly and time-efficient.
Even though we still have nearly a year until the 34th CSUN Assistive Technology Conference (March 11-15, 2019 at the Anaheim Marriott in Anaheim, California), we’re already looking forward to traveling west to share our technology, including innovative updates and improvements we’ll be making to Equidox throughout 2018.
I already look forward to going back. It was such a positive, inspirational experience to be around so many smiling faces and to have so much energy focused on one common goal.
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Dan is an Equidox Account Manager at Onix. In his role, he helps clients to improve the accessibility of PDF documents for people using assistive technology in accordance with standards set by the Americans with Disabilities Act.