Now the surprises. When I teach at a conference, I regularly ask people how many of them are familiar with or using MyHeritage.com. When I started asking this question the response would be almost no one, maybe two or three people in the back of the room. At this conference, I am estimating that close to 90% of the people indicated they were using the program. This is a major shift in the use of an online genealogy and an indication of the effectiveness of MyHeritage.com's usefulness as a website. Although once you subscribe to MyHeritage.com you will get a lot of followup email, they have pretty much avoided saturated media advertising. But I think the response now shows a real interest in the program rather than a response to any advertising effort.
As a group, I found the Conference attendees to be more involved generally in serious genealogical research than when I teach more casual or invited groups of people. The level of questions and discussion that I overheard were more specific and not an indication that the participants were novices or uninformed. This may be a reflection of the area. The attendees also appeared to be as diverse a group of people as I have seen at any conference previously.
One thing that was not surprising and mostly confirms again some of the things I have been writing is that there were virtually no younger people at the Conference. Some of the attendees might have been as old as I am.
Thanks to the organizers and participants for a wonderful one-day conference. They did a great job of organizing and supporting a really nice conference.