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Julie Wernert
Manager, External Communications, University Information Technology Services

Last modified: Monday, September 20, 2010

Best-selling author Steven Berlin Johnson and online entertainer Ze Frank to speak at Indiana University

September 20, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Providing insights into the everyday impact of cutting-edge developments, two national speakers will headline Indiana University's 15th annual Statewide IT Conference (SWITC 2010) later this month at the Indiana Memorial Union. Both addresses will be open to the public, but seating will be limited.

Kim Milford

Jim Hoffman

Kim Milford

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"This year's headline speakers promise to be thought-provoking, entertaining, and energizing," said Kim Milford, SWITC program chair. "Steven Berlin Johnson and Ze Frank have compelling worldviews that help their audiences make connections between wide-ranging areas, realizing the potential of revolutionary ideas to reshape our experiences."

Steven Berlin Johnson will take the stage on Monday, September 27 at 3pm. He is the best-selling author of six books on the intersection of science, technology, and personal experience. His writings have influenced everything from the way political campaigns use the Internet, to the ongoing battle against 21st-century terrorism.

Steven Johnson

Steven Johnson

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"The title of Johnson's next book, Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation, really encapsulates what he's about -- essentially how innovative ideas emerge and spread in society, driving historical change," noted Milford. "And, beyond commenting on these developments, Johnson pioneers them through his own uses of technology and media."

Ze (pronounced "Zay") Frank will close out the conference on Tuesday, September 28 at 3pm. Frank is one of today's most influential online entertainers, having turned out numerous pieces of popular online media, including The Show with Ze Frank. He brings audiences an experience they will never forget -- a truly entertaining and yet insightful look at how technology and creativity intersect.

"Search for Ze Frank on YouTube, and you'll quickly realize just how insightful and engaging he is," added Milford. "He's full of ideas and inspiration -- particularly related to social media, digital marketing, viral media, and online community -- and you can't help but walk away from his presentations with your brain abuzz."

For more on Steven Berlin Johnson, visit or follow him on Twitter @stevenbjohnson.

For more on Ze Frank, visit or follow him on Twitter @zefrank.

In addition to the two headline speakers, this year's Statewide IT Conference encompasses seven tracks for breakout sessions -- including a "Green IT" track specially designed to fit with IU Bloomington's fall 2010 themester, "sustain•ability: Thriving on a Small Planet."

For more about IU's Statewide IT Conference, including complete program and registration information, please visit:

About the Statewide IT Conference

The Statewide IT Conference attracts information technology innovators, creators, developers, thought leaders, professionals, students, and researchers from across Indiana University. Recently designated a Best Place to Work in IT by Computerworld magazine, Indiana University is a national leader in providing one of the most advanced computing, networking, and technology support environments in US higher education.

The One IU IT team is at the heart of the university's ability to excel, and maintaining the university's place at the forefront of IT requires a commitment to professional development. The Statewide IT Conference promises just that, delivering education, awareness, and development opportunities for professionals, researchers, faculty, and students involved in information technology.