Zach Warren: The common first question I’ve been asked a few times in the past 24 hours is, do I think ILTACON has been a success? Frankly, I don’t know if I feel comfortable answering that question definitively. I’m not privy to whether vendors hit their numbers, to the final attendance of sessions, to any health ramifications of the ongoing Delta variant. Success is a tough thing to definitively measure when there’s competing desires and viewpoints.

So I’m going to answer a slightly different question, one that I feel more qualified for: Am I glad I went? Yes, I’m glad I went. After 16+ months of Zoom conversations, I quickly remembered how much I gain from having in-person conversations. I feel sharper in person, more able to string together trends and ideas that will serve our readers into the future. I’m able to pick up on body language, whether there’s something left unsaid that I need to follow up on, and how pumped someone is about what’s coming next.