Stir Trek 2 – Brief Review, Musings, and Mayhem
(I apologize if this is a little long, but it covers a decent amount of ground)
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been averaging about 5 hours or so of sleep a night due to studying, interviews, preparing for interviews and trying to get actual work done. It seems like I’m never making any headway, because the list of things I need to take care of is growing so quickly lately (but, honestly, that’s largely a positive thing considering the items getting stored in my queue).
That said, I was really looking forward to attending Stir Trek, a local developer conference. Admittedly, I was also sort of dreading taking the time off because I knew I’d feel guilty for losing the day and a half from all of the tasks I currently have. However, I knew I both needed the break and would get more out of it than the time I lost by going.
I’m glad I did.
The night before, there was a geek dinner at the food court in Polaris Fashion Place with a pretty large turnout. It was a fun and pretty relaxed event, and a nice way to ease into my “weekend”.
The conference itself was great, and full of things that I now want to look into. I stuck mainly to the web dev and RIA tracks, but wandered over into the UX talk as well.
For those of you who are actually curious as to which talks I went to, here’s the rundown:
- ASP.NET MVC v2 by Steve Horn
- Understanding User Experience Design Patterns by Ambrose Little
- JQueryUI – The Magic From Behind The Curtain by Phil Japikse
- What's New in ASP.NET 4.0 by Steve Smith
The presentation materials should be up on the presenters’ sites in the near future, so keep an eye out if any of the synopses sound interesting.
The last session was really a toss up between the ASP.NET talk and Bill Sempf’s “Economics of Cloud Computing”. I was kind of upset that I had to chose, but that happens sometimes.
Thankfully, I had a minute to stop in before Bill’s talk and say hello in person since we’ve been speaking over twitter and MSN so much lately. I dropped off a box of tea that I’d brought for him (yes, I got to tea bag the mighty Sempf heh) and I got a copy of his new book, C# All In One to read and review.
This means that my work queue just got a little longer, but I’m glad to do it for a number of reasons - among them because it’s always nice to have quality reference materials and the fact that Bill’s a good guy. He’s also one of the many people who have been helping me on my current job search, so the least I can do is lend a hand in return.
It also means that I get to play part of my former role as an editor again, which is kind of neat.
One of the other great things about the conference was that I got to meet a lot of people in person for the first time that I’d been talking to on twitter as well as meeting a large number of new people and getting to hang out with people that I’ve known in the community for varying amounts of time.
To top it off, I finally got to repay my debt to Phil Japikse by poking him with a stick (I threatened to do it months ago, but it’s the first time since then that I’ve seen him). I also got to heckle him good naturedly a little as well as help solve a minor technical problem. =]
I love Phil. He’s a decent guy and one of the many people I’ve met since I started going to CONDG who amaze me by how much they give back in the form of time, experience, inspiration and encouragement.
To be honest, I love pretty much all of the Columbus dev community that I’ve met so far. They’ve made me feel welcome since the first meeting I went to.
For the movie this year, we had Iron Man 2. All that needs to be said is that it was amazing and under “Badass” in the dictionary, it says “See: Tony Stark. See Also: Natasha Romanoff.”
Karyl and I were going to drop in on the geek dinner after the movie, but it appeared to be pretty crowded and we were both feeling a little overloaded (the conference had 600 people registered and it’s been a while since I’ve been in a crowd of that size for that long. Add on the stress of the last few weeks, and I basically just wanted to wind down gracefully before driving out of there).
I apologize to anyone who was hoping to hang out at the dinner. I had planned to attend; I just sort of reached my stimulus threshold. Hopefully we’ll get the chance to hang out another time.
Current mood: tired, but good
Current music: Aerosmith – Deuces Are Wild