Conference Season Is Upon Us - Free Your Mind

Conference season is upon soon and if you haven’t signed up to at least one event this year you are missing out on a lot. A conference or similar large event is about more than just the sessions that happen, its a chance to learn and grow for everyone involved. There are great opportunities to meet new people and discuss innovative and challenging ideas, make connections and give your career development and motivation a massive boost.

Forget “New Years” resolutions. Lots of people I know who made the effort to go to a conference and really get engaged got a massive boost, both financially and in terms of being happy getting up in the morning!

So whats on in the tech world?

Devoxx has got to be about the most respected tech conference in Europe. The event draws in a massive crowd of 3,000 people from over 40 countries, has a diverse range of topics and some great interactive workshops. Learning potential at Devoxx is to the max!

Closer to home (London, UK) we have JAX London and the LJC open conference. JAX have been running the best Java related conferences in Germany for quite a while and (not counting the LJC :-) ) run the best Java, Agile and everything else conference in the UK.

If continuous integration or even continuous delivery is your thing, then you must check out CitCon. It is the second year of this great event and a chance to keep up with this rapidly evolving area. Its a chance to voice your experiences with Jenkins / Hudson or Atlassian Bamboo - or connect with people who share the struggle with other CI servers.

November 26th (its a Saturday) is my favourite UK event, the London Java Community open conference. As well as some great speakers, its an opportunity to hear from the community itself. You get to hear some from people just like yourselves talking about the challenges you most commonly face with lots of ideas on how to survive them! the LJC conference is also running some workshops for those who prefer practical events.

Oh and if you are in need of travel, there is a little conference in San Francisco next week that usually shapes a lot of what happens in the Java space for a while. Yes, its JavaOne time again. If you get chance to go, its an amazing experience and you will have a chance to see our very own diabolical developer!

There are too many conferences to mention them all I am afraid. I am looking forward to QCon London in March 2012, but if you cant wait that long you can check out GOTO Amsterdam (or other locations) as its run by the same great Trifork team. Atlassian are sponsoring GOTO Amsterdam and Arhus (Denmark) so you should see the Atlassian ambassador team there.

Lets get more agile!

Events have already been happening in the Agile space, with a surprisingly excellent first ever “Agile on the beach“ conference. There was a very high concentration of thought leaders in the agile space, including the Poppendieks, Kelvin Henney, Benjimin Mitchell and Jon Jagger. The conference had over 100 people turn out and it was set in the beautiful surroundings of Falmouth university. With a party on the beach on the first night, the event really lived upto its name and I look forward to next year!

I will be speaking at Agile Cambridge, about taking kanban to the masses through my coaching engagements and running the Limited WIP society in London.

There are many more agile events soon, including XP Day 2011 (London) and XP Days Benelux. Both these events share a lot of experience reports from practitioners and people trying to become more agile in their daily work. With an open space format, the only thing that is predictable about these events is that you will learn so much your head will hurt for a month…

Working with an amazing company like Altassian, I am lucky enough to go to all of these events and help promote software development as the best job on the planet - and discuss the support people can get from our toolset if there is time! All of these events mentioned are in some way sponsored by Atlassian, or have someone from the company speaking, helping show our commitment to the community and making software development awesome.

If you are feeling the economic downturn, you can apply to volunteer at some of these events or look out for some of the great community events taking place every month. Check out, eventbrite, superdevs and skillsmatter to see what’s happening in your area. I am working on a London event update soon for the LJC community, listing what I think are the most interesting events happening.

In the meanwhile, dont forget to check out my public calendar for interesting events coming up.

Thank you

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