2018 Conference Report
I’ve been at 9 IT events worldwide this year. The topic I’ve been speaking most is unsurprisingly Kotlin. You can find complete list of my public appearances in Talks section, but now I want to share only my experience about events themselves.
GDG Nuremberg Android Meetup, January 10, Nuremberg
The year has started at a local meetup in Nuremberg. The city is just shy 170 km away from Munich, so I was able to quickly travel there for just a few hours in the evening. The meetup group is way smaller than in Munich, but it doesn’t affect the quality of meetups or discussions. Highly recommend visiting them if you’re in the area.
Codemotion Rome, April 14–15, Rome
With three days, multiple tracks and thousands of attendees it’s a relatively big conference which is a part of Codemotion series. I’ve been to their Berlin edition many years before. Nothing has changed much since then, most of the participants are students (the event takes place in a University). The most successful talks in such setting are detailed, but not too deep technical presentations, where the speaker uncovers a particular technology, framework or library. I’ve given two talks there, first got a very positive rating and feedback, the second one was different and unfortunately was aimed at a different audience.
JavaDay Istanbul, May 5, Istanbul
I have mixed feelings about this one: on the one hand, all attendees seemed to be genuinely interested in programming and were thriving to learn. On the other hand, I only spoke with only one guy (except my colleagues of course), because others prefer only to speak Turkish. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the event and the warm welcome.
Riga Dev Days, May 29-31, Riga
A remarkable event in the capital of Latvia! Highly recommend it to everyone. The city is charming in May, I’ve only been there in winter before. The conference features two full days of many talks on different topics delivered by experienced speakers. I’ve had a lot of inspiring conversations there, and the party after the conference was a success. The highlight of the evening was the drummer Nelli Bubujanca and the live drum music she played.
JBCNConf, June 11–13, Barcelona
JBCNConf is a Community Java Conference, which invited me to talk about Kotlin. It’s nice to see a rising interest in Kotlin among Java developers. The event is fun and the community there is thriving. Sadly I was only able to spend just half a day there.
Milan Kotlin Community Conf, June 14, Milan
After NoSlidesConf last year, Ferdinando Santacroce approached me to help organize first Italian community event dedicated entirely to Kotlin. I forwarded organizational inquires to a responsible manager at JetBrains, so I don’t have much detail about this aspect of the conference. But I’ve seen myself, that those folks were able to build a great whole-day two-track event, which was entirely free for the attendees. It was a pleasure to deliver the keynote there; it was very well accepted. I’ve enjoyed Milan and am looking forward to coming back there sometime.
Oracle CodeOne, October 22–25, San Francisco
The biggest Java Conference has been rebranded, but it didn’t change much. Many attendees were still saying JavaOne. And confusing these two names was the most popular joke on stage. Rebranding, however, didn’t help the event. It’s getting smaller and less attractive since I’ve been there last time. Attempt to attract talks about languages other than Java failed. There were far too many talks comparing different languages (on JVM, or Java vs. Go for example). And JavaOne CodeOne remains the main Java conference, with most of the presentations about it and most prominent speakers coming from Java developers and community.
Despite all of this, I was excited to be speaking there; my talk went well. Unfortunately, there is no recording. I haven’t visited other sessions, because I was busy at JetBrains booth most of the time.
DevFest Toulouse, November 8, Toulouse
DevFest series of events organized by GDG communities all over the world is mostly dedicated to Android and Google Cloud technologies, but not necessarily. I don’t remember exactly how I’ve found this one, but I liked the diversity of talks. Only a few of them were in English, but organizers aim to have half of the presentations in English in next year.
It’s the city of Airbus, so most of IT people there work directly or indirectly in aero industry. Young people don’t have any problem to speak English. The speakers’ dinner in a bar was also the best I’ve been to. To cut it short, it was a five stars event.
hackaTUM, November 16–18, Munich
And finally, I gave a workshop during a Hackathon at the local University. I graduated a little less than ten years ago and hadn’t been teaching students for quite a while, so I misjudged the level of the attendees. I was able to change the topic and the structure of my presentation quickly, but it would be much better if I had prepared it differently in the first place. We’ve participated in the Hackathon to promote internships in JetBrains’ Munich office. We’ll see how it goes.
That’s a wrap!
It’s been a pretty intense year, I’ve learned a lot and hope some people learned from me as well. Next year I’d like to prepare new content and travel less, so I haven’t submitted any talks yet. But I already have many ideas, stay tuned!
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