Wednesday, October 31, 2012

AAR / SBL 2012 Annual Meeting App

James McGrath has just noted on his Patheos blog that this year's AAR/SBL app is now available for iOS devices. I can't find the Android version, but I'm trusting it's coming. (If you find it, please leave a comment here pointing to it.) The meeting is in Chicago, Nov 17-20, 2012.

I had some critiques of last year's app, but I still found it more useful than not. 

UPDATE: 2012.11.01: The Android app was just made available. Click through to either the Android or iOS app HERE.

From the description, app features include:
  • Native app: No wifi connection required to access the conference program, schedule or animated maps.
  • Now: Stay informed about hot issues, event program changes, your upcoming sessions and organizer messages.
  • Program: Browse the entire event program to build your personal schedule, bookmark sessions or speakers, or access session handouts as available.
  • Take notes and email them as part of your trip report for reference.
  • Exhibitors, Maps, related conference info and much more. 
Quick test run: Just downloaded and fired up the app. BTW, free wireless internet access has been promised throughout the convention center so connecting should not be an issue.
  • There are a number of ways in the app to email or send to Twitter or Facebook (but not LinkedIn which was in last years) notes you've added, schedule, etc. There's even a live Twitter feed on the home screen of the app. (Twitter: #SBLAAR or #AARSBL)
  • Yes! You can add your own appointments to the schedule!
  • Yes! You can export your entire schedule so that it can be imported to Outlook, Google Calendar, iOS, Android via an ICS file.
  • Maps of all the venues are great and a link to Google maps of Chicago. The exhibitor menu is similar to last year's, but that is good.
The app is similar to the 2011 one, but is definitely improved. More ways to search / find what you are looking for and better ways for sharing / exporting stuff.

UPDATE: 2012.11.07: There is now an official user guide to the app here. (PDF)

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