BarCamp Boston

I spent the weekend at BarCamp Boston, and had a great time hacking and socializing with the rest of the attendees.

There were 256 people registered on the Wiki, official attendance was ‘226 unique humans’ over Saturday and Sunday. For many people, this was their first BarCamp Boston event. I estimate 70% of the Saturday attendees returned Sunday, and we had a flush of new attendees on Sunday. Over the two days, 91 really good pizzas were consumed, in addition to a continuous supply of coffee, soda, and snacks.

The venue was Matignion High School. I liked it – minimalist yet functional, and easy to get to. It’s hard to describe the experience of being in a high school cafeteria with 200 other technology lovers, with 50 simultaneous conversations taking place. It was like, well, being in a high school cafeteria 🙂

The session board filled up quickly on both Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday, I cauge Matt McKeon’s talk on Many Eyes, Joe Cascio’s talk about Distributed Twitter, and parts of the Google App Engine and Amazon Web Services talks.

In the afternoon, I gave a talk on Data Services for RIA’s, and led a roundtable discussion on public data. Public data is a really popular topic, and I’ll be spending more time exposing this type of data with SnapLogic in the future.

Session scheduling was tight, but there was plenty of time for casual talks in the morning and afternoon breaks, and I got to meet a lot of really interesting people.

Sunday, I caught John Eckmans talk about the Twitter API, the Django BOF, and the session on the next BostonBarCamp. I also joined in on a good afternoon session about Open Source licensing and business, as well as a Code Secrets talk. I spent much more time on Sunday in spontaneous conversations, which is why I really like the Unconference style.

I was also good to meet some hardware hackers, since my favourite programming language has always been solder. There were some Arduino advocates around doing their thing, and I packed my TuxDroid, since it’s been collecting dust since OSCon last year, and needed a workout. I forgot how much fun TuxDroid was, and I can think of a dozen projects with him that I don’t have time for. Tux also got to meet Shimon Rura, organizer of BarCamp Boston.

BarCamp Boston is now on my list of preferred events, and I’ll try to make the next one.


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