I’m happy to announce that we are gearing toward another successful round of IT/Dev Connections to be held on September 14-17, 2015 in Las Vegas. After receiving great feedback about the facility at the ARIA hotel last year, we are excited to host the event at the same location this year.
As the Development Platform and Tools track content chair, I have been focusing hard on making it the one-stop shop for all what you need to know as a developer. As a 24/7 developer and a real-world consultant (who has successfully managed, revived, and created projects over and over again) my only goal is to learn, get better, and share the wisdom with fellow developers like you. In my real-world quest to take on challenges in software organizations, I am fortunate to meet smart folks from all over the world. At IT/Dev Connections, the goal is to bring in speakers who are not only good presenters, but also have real-world experience solving complex problems.
At IT/Dev Connections we spend a lot of time evaluating speakers, sessions, and the actual content that goes into each presentation. First and foremost, we try our best to divide each track into the following categories: Intermediate and Advanced. Second, we try our best to work with the speakers to come up with a good blend of code and presentation. For some topics, we might focus entirely on complete code and no slides at all. Whereas, for more conceptual topics, we focus on a 30-40% slideshow. Third, we spend a lot of time with industry experts to get real statistics as to what will be the future in terms of development technologies, frameworks, and even tools. We try our best to bring in the top experts to present and share their experiences. And believe it or not, the best part of IT/Dev Connections is networking. It’s probably the only conference that assigns a roundtable lunch table to a speaker that anyone can go sit with to get to know him personally. Fifth, the speakers and attendees are encouraged to spend time on a side to focus on some specific problems. Last year we had 3 attendees spend 1.5 hours with me before my talk to code on their work problems. According to them, that was the best part of the conference. And yes, there is no extra charge for it.
If you have an All-Access pass, you get to meet the speakers after hours and get to know them personally. That’s the time to carry on a lot of informal discussions. I still remember a developer letting me know how some of the tips I gave him made him get a promotion and a raise at his job. Guess what? We are Facebook friends and he calls me once a month and gets my opinion on various topics still. What’s interesting is that missing the networking part might also mean that you may miss information that can make you less competitive. I remember meeting an executive from a Fortune 500 who had heard me say “What’s costlier than a good developer? A bad developer.” He called me up once to see if I could give him some tips to revive a project in which a big consulting company had not only been unsuccessful, but it had also burnt through 90 percent of the funds. I was able to help him finish the project on budget and on time, but, most importantly, he was able to secure his position in the company.
In my next article, I will be talking about specific development technologies and why we have included them as part of IT/Dev Connections 2015.