Story

A tech simpletons diary of NodeconfEU 2015

  • As Steve and I are both members of the Scotch Malt Whiskey Society, we were looking forward to the Irish Whiskey tasting. As you enter the Spiegeltent, the overwhelming smell of whiskey pervades your senses. Whiskey glasses are laid out in their hundreds all around the tent. There are four different variations to imbibe. From a few past experiences involving tracking down lost possessions and restaurant receipts I've not remembered (at all), I was very wary of knocking back too many. As it was, we all pulled through unscathed and the merry fella presenting the tasting kept us all amused and informed. Unfortunately for him, but undaunted by it all, by the time we hit the fourth whiskey, hardly a soul was listening. Once again, the music didn't disappoint, but the crowd thinned out quickly once the free stuff was off the table....................developers...
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  • For a first timer, Tom Ruttle shows an aptitude for golf, only to hit the next one under the board on the left and straight through Tom Chambers legs. A foot higher and all hell could've broken loose!!
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  • Big Tom Gallagher knocking one powerfully into the trees on the right!
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  • After a hard days listening, we knocked back a quick drink with Johnny and Tom R from TES and hit the driving range. I had a sneaking suspicion that golf may not be a developers game.
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  • Two Toms are better than one...
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  • DAY THREE: Having met Suz (@noopkat) the previous evening, we were all taken by her sunny disposition and wanted to be in the Spiegeltent and watch and support her talk. As it stands, it was by far the best presentation of the conference. It was well thought out, structured and smoothly presented. Within 'Hacking the Chipson' Suz displayed a deep understanding and passion for computer hardware and code and topped it off with a demo of 'bricking a chip'. My two daughters could do much worse than having Suz as a role model, but alas their father is about as technically adept as a spoon in this present company (once again admonishes himself for the hundredth time for not learning to code). A few other presentations later - including a very clever demo of reverse engineering apple airplay and a beautifully presented, if somewhat slightly content light cyborg presentation by Emily - up stepped Yunong Xiao from Netflix and stepped us through a slick presentation on observable node in an enterprise context. This was the first presentation that gelled with us from a business perspective and Yunong simply knows his stuff. Netflix seems like a company that isn't in need of GuideSmiths unfortunately!
    4 years ago
  • END OF DAY TWO: After a fairly disjointed day, it was Metalman happy hour followed by a BBQ and meeting a few interesting people including Taron from Ohio and Suz, a smart, quirky and hardware loving Australian developer based out of New York. The live music has been of a high quality, but it doesn't really seem to inspire the developers to stick around for the evening and the room empties early. I'm pretty sure the place would be rocking, but hey ho.
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  • Atlassian workshop...
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  • The old and cranky at the far end, to the new happier generation.....
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  • These two guys playing all sorts of interesting tunes between talks...
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  • Unfortunately, disaster struck after the first three talks of 'conference day one' as the WiFi and the audio visual broke down at the same time and neither were fixed in time to make the day useful. We did get to listen to the coolest presenter you could imagine in the name of Taron Foxworth from Ohio. Somehow he managed to make the words 'next slide' and 'docker containers' sound like the lyrics of a soulful tune. With the nodeconf team given up on the idea of more talks in the tent, they sent us up to the bar to get started early. After a smooth Guinness, I settled into a workshop for the afternoon run by a rep from Atlassian. Unfortunately for him, the majority of developers wanted to build a microservice in a competing workshop so there was only a few of us. The salt was rubbed firmly into the poor Atlassian chaps wound when a large number of people kept popping into his workshop to steal chairs for the extremely popular workshop next door!!! It simply rammed home the point that the majority of developers only use JIRA and the like if they have too, not because they want too! Ultimately though, the subject matter moved into code and that was me done...
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  • Richard Rodger..
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  • DAY TWO: The alarm goes off at 8am which is a bit of a shock, as with the odd exception of course, I rarely see developers rock into an office before 9:30am (although most of them have already started working somewhere by then of course). We head up to the castle which will never lose its appeal and smash down a cooked breakfast before heading off to the Spiegeltent. The conference kicks off with an interesting introduction by one of the founders of the node foundation. There was nothing particularly groundbreaking in the talk, but it provided an indication of the free spirited characters that populate the node and open source community of which she has been a major contributor.
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  • END OF DAY ONE: Not exactly sure what happened to Toms head in the picture, but at least Steve looks happy for once. We knocked back a couple of Metalmans and then hit the hay. There's no messing around at these conferences though, kick off is at 9am.
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  • I've made a note to self to investigate the origins of such a tent. As it stands, it had a high quality Irish band and a nice local brew by the name of Metalman.
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  • Ladies and gentleman, this is a Spiegeltent
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  • Arriving at Waterford airport, I was glad I'd booked ahead for a taxi on the suspicion that Waterford isn't exactly an international hub. Our travelling party consisted of three of the GuideSmiths team (Steve C, Tom C and me). At the last minute we were joined by Johnny H and Tom R of TES Global. These boys hadn't booked ahead, but luckily our taxi driver was happy to take the extra cash and shove us all into his car. Steve claimed 'size wins' and booted Tom C out of the front seat leaving the other four in the back. I unfortunately had 'The Huss' nestled on my left thigh who seemed to pant and mildly sweat his way through the journey. We dropped them off and finally arrived at the Waterford Castle and Golf Club at about 9:30pm. I am now stranded on an island in Ireland for a conference on a subject I know very little about.......what's one to do? Go and have a beer in the Spiegeltent of course!
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  • Our chariot....
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  • DAY ONE: We didn't take the well trodden route via Dublin but took this little beauty from Luton straight to Waterford. One of my esteemed colleagues tells me it's a Fokke 50. I was dreading a bumpy ride, but instead it was a smooth if slightly noisy journey (due to the twin propellers). Service was great, it was nice to be presented with food and drinks as an integral part of the service. The captain landed it like the runway was a pillow.
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