About a year ago Luminis, the company I work for, organized it’s first developer conference. The goal of the conference was to share knowledge, like we also do with the many open source projects we are involved in. The conference last year was a success and we decided to do it again this. Bigger and better. DevCon 16 was a full day conference, with ~500 attendees. Looking back, it was a great day.
An inspiration talk that was actually inspirational
For me the best moment of the day was the starting keynote. Having been at an alarming high number of conferences in the past few years, I learned that keynotes are usually a great moment to check Twitter, mail, or have breakfast. There are exceptions though, and the morning keynote was definitely in that category. Chris Moon describes himself as one of the luckiest people to be alive you’re likely to meet. After surviving being a prisoner of Khmer Rouge guerrillas in Cambodia, he had his right arm and leg blown of by a land mine in East Africa. Although nobody believed he would survive this accident, he recovered and ran a marathon within a year after leaving the hospital. He’s now running ultra distance races to test prosthetics. He talked about how you have to take control of each and every situation, no matter how bad the situation may be. Repeating more of his advises wouldn’t do it justice. Make sure you find a presentation of this guy somewhere, it’s very inspiring.
The day was filled with technical sessions of a wide variety of topics. I presented “Java 9 Modularity in action” and “Kubernetes Automation” myself, and there were other talks about about topics such as front end development, IoT, building race simulators and architecture and software evolution.
In the “never seen that before” category my colleagues Phuoc Tran and Marcel Offermans did something interesting. Their presentation was about the work they did for Automobilista, one of the better race simulator “games” available. They decided to create their slides in Unitity 3d, a game development tool. The slides where embedded in an actual racing track of the game, using the game engine to move around the track to show slides. Probably not the most time efficient way to create a presentation, but definitely the most impressive way.
Of course we also had a racing sim set-up again to drive a few laps. The hardware is pretty much as good as it gets, which is a great way to experience racing.