Ramp Up for QCon 2012 San Francisco   Leave a comment

I am getting ready to attend QCON 2012 in San Francisco, this will be my third QCon SF. You can read my posts for the 2011 edition here and here.  I enjoy QCon and find the tutorials especially useful.  But let me say right off that I don’t attend on my own dime.  In the past I have attended QCon and Microsoft’s MIX conference.  Sadly, Microsoft has decided to kill MIX, this is bad for Microsoft and for the developer community.  I have written posts about MIX here.  Now that MVC 4 is open sourced, one wonders why Microsoft corporate has killed MIX.

QCon is run by the same folks you put out the web magazine InfoQ.  For my money (and its not) in the past QCon schedule is a little long on Agile and Java and not strong enough on JavaScript libraries. The 2012 tracks rectify this problem somewhat. What QCon is strongest is for its embrace of open and free (or almost free) technologies to power the web next year.  This years tracks include a reprise of “Cross Platform Mobile”, “Programmable Web”, “No SQL” (on all three days) and a bevy of tracks on hard core web development ( “Real Time Web” , “UX”, “Taming HTML5 and JavaScript” and “Dynamic Languages for the Web” plus the usual cast of characters: Java, Agile and what looks like a strong three day track of end to end “solutions”. Strangely JQuery is not featured anywhere in this conference.

The tutorials include a full day session on cross platform development  using Phonegap.  Robinson and Weber who presented an excellent and well attended session on RESTful Development will return with a Neo4j programming class.  With excellent timing Peter Bell will present a four hour tutorial on CoffeeScript.  If there was a MIX 2012, they would be talking about how MVC4 is supporting CoffeeScript (sigh).  Track and tutorials can be found here and here.  Note the venue has also changed this year from the centrally located, and very urban, Union Square area of SF to the more up scale Embarcadero area. For folks who like to explore the city, as opposed to pub crawling, this is a bummer.  But it is ocean view and close to the (now departed) Occupy SF site.

Well, that’s the basic facts, now the question is: Should YOU attend QCon 2012?  The best part of QCon is that it is not a standard vendor conference and (except for Agile) nobody is trying to sell you anything.  The attendee’s tend to be working programmers from startups in the SF area and from Europe which helps the sessions to be very focused on what really works. for programmers and startup firms.  There is no focus on mega systems like Oracle products or SharePoint.  In this environment, couchdb (and this years bad boy Neo) are about as establishment as you get. QCon has traditionally been very friendly towards NO SQL databases and has been I consistent good sorce for information on this topic.  This year promises to continue in this trend.   I regularly avoid pure vendor sessions so of the three days of regular conference sessions I can look forward to about 2.5 days of good sessions.  The tutorials that I have attended are top notch and honest.  I can not evaluate the daily keynote speeches since I am normally sleep in past these.  Attendees have told me the keynote party and mixer is nice but I am always in the Haight district when this happens on Wednesday night.  If the boss is paying and you are coding the web and web devices you must attend this conference.  If it’s your dime….

I will be bloging QCon 2012 on my Nexus 7

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