Before I went to Atlanta for the 2014 ISTE conference, a friend of mine gave me a fairly detailed description of what I could expect. Although most of it sounded great, I found her description of the vendor showcase area to be a bit disconcerting. For the extrovert, I am sure it would have sounded like a paradise, but for an introvert like myself, who visits the local mall once every two years (maybe), it sounded more like purgatory. She offered up the usual tip of not making eye contact with the vendors in order to avoid the sales pitch. Her story reminded me of my experiences with the open markets in Mexico and the souk in Qatar. I have two things working against me in those situations. The first is that I am not good at haggling over prices, or anything else of that matter. The second is that I was born and reared in the South which means being rude goes against my yes ma’am, sweet tea, Bible Belt upbringing. But after some thought it occurred to me that this would be a different kind of experience in one key way. These vendors would be showcasing technologies that were relevant to my field and, more than likely, I would find the majority of these technologies interesting. So, although I knew I would still squirm a little for stepping out of my introverted hole (as my wife loves to call it), I was looking forward to a positive experience.