The Bleeding Edge was a series of presentations at the annual STC conference (now the Summit). Its goal was to address cutting-edge technologies and methodologies that emerged too close to the conference to be addressed by the standard presentation proposal route. I proposed it after the 1998 conference after hearing comments that there weren’t enough advanced sessions. After approval by then STC-president Mark Hannigan and Assistant to the President Deborah Sauer, I launched the Bleeding Edge in 1999. I ran it from 1999 to 2014 except for a two year hiatus due to some organizational issues in 2008 and 2009.
Bleeding Edge presentations covered JavaHelp coding, XHTML, haptic interfaces (IBM sent a speaker from London, as I recall), the W3C RDF metadata standard, search engine optimization, XSLT, on-demand publishing, and similar topics. My Beyond the Bleeding Edge column in STC Intercom came out of the Bleeding Edge. The Bleeding Edge also spun off a “standards watch” session, with speakers discussing developments in bodies like the W3C and IEEE, and several “standards watch” columns in Intercom.
The Summit organizers decided not to run the Bleeding Edge in 2015 because they thought the Summit’s technical level had risen to the point where the Bleeding Edge was no longer needed. From what I saw of the presentations in Columbus, I agree. Although I’ll miss the Bleeding Edge, its demise is a positive sign for the Summit overall.
My thanks again to Mark Hannigan and Deborah Sauer, and to all the presenters over the years who did such an outstanding job of helping keep STC on the cutting (or “bleeding”) edge.