PRINT 19 Will Bridge the Gap Between Printing and Technology

Last year’s PRINT event saw 16,500 attendees. (Photo courtesy of APTech)

Printing professionals and exhibitors are invited to attend this year’s PRINT event at Chicago’s McCormick Place Oct. 3 to 5. Administered by the Association for Print Technologies (APTech), last year’s event saw 16,500 attendees. According to APTech vice president of marketing Sarah Markfield, 21 percent of them were first-time attendees and 84 percent were senior-level executives.

“We are on track to match or beat those numbers,” she said. “And when we look under the hood, what last year’s breakdown tells us is that in spite of industry challenges there are new people and companies who see great opportunities, and that our show is still the central marketplace for education, innovation, and a great place to do business.”

This year’s show will once again offer an array of educational sessions and workshops.

“We are assembling 80-plus educational sessions that run the gamut of big-picture trend discussions to practical ones,” Markfield said. “We know that PRINT attendees need and value both the 30,000 foot view as well as the getting deep into the nitty gritty on topics that impact their day-to-day operations.”

Also on the schedule is keynote speaker Nicholas Thompson, editor-in-chief of Wired magazine. Markfield described his speech, “The Wired Future: Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Privacy, Social Media, Truth, Tech Companies, and More,” as a “future-forward” talk about how people will be be using technology in print and in their daily lives.

“The quickening adoption of artificial intelligence/machine learning is already affecting how content is created and distributed,” she explained. “This trend along with robotics will transform  not only our devices, but how we earn paychecks, determine public policy and a host of other issues.”

This year, PRINT will host an opening night reception open to all attendees on the exhibit hall floor. “This will give exhibitors and attendees alike an opportunity to mix and mingle and talk business in a more relaxed format than during the hustle and bustle of traditional show hours,” Markfield said.

Returning this year are TechWalks (exclusive, expert-led, curated exhibitor tours) and the RED HOT Technology Recognition Program, featuring publishing and printing technology, equipment or services that have come to market within the past 12 months. New to this year’s program are TechTalks, sessions highlighting specific technologies.

On the show floor, Markfield said attendees can expect a full exhibit hall experience that includes manufacturers and suppliers as well as front-end and finishing solution providers.

“We’re on track to have several hundred exhibitors covering the entire spectrum of the print value chain, including those catering to the newspaper industry,” she said.

Markfield added the goal of the show is to “demonstrate that there is a future for print and the print industry.”

“We live in a digital world, but even so, there are many who continue to desire the tactile experience that only print can provide,” she said. “For our exhibitors and attendees, we want them to make connections so that they can collaborate to create new products which will positively impact their customers.”

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