This weekend I attended barcamb3 in Cambridge, UK.
I really liked the event.
Around eighty people with different interests and backgrounds attended the event and this is what made it work so well.
The .Net events I attend and enjoy in Cambridge are good but you don’t get start ups that are passionate about what they are doing, or hearing about the problems they have had to overcome and what they hope to achieve.
The mix of attendees also meant that the talks on the day covered a variety of topics from abusing social media sites like Facebook/Twitter to get more traffic to talks about geo location. Not everyone was a developer so there were good discussions which weren’t about programming such as how paperless could we become.
There was also a talk on TDD. I learned that developers going for a job at the Guardian newspaper have to take part in a TDD exercise as part of their interview process! As soon as the presenters mentioned pair programming, it became the main topic. Having written a blog post called ‘Pair Programming Is Not a Silver Bullet’ it was reassuring to hear other developers experiences were the same as mine… both good and bad!
My talk about developing prototypes with SketchFlow
I did a talk about using Expression Blend and SketchFlow for developing prototypes covering topics such as
- Lo-fidelity vs high-fidelity prototypes
- Advantages over other prototyping tools such as Visio and Balsamiq
- Component screens
- The Visual State Manager
- Converting a SketchFlow prototype into a real world app
Alfred – Mac App of the year 2010?
One of reasons I make an effort to attend events such as these is to get inspiration from other developers.
I talked to so many people over the weekend and found out some interesting information about developing sites that streamed music, search applications and content management solutions.
But without a doubt the most innovative and interesting was Alfred, an application for the Mac.
How did I find out about it? By just saying hi to Andrew Pepperrell. We got talking about each other do, then he grabbed a Mac and showed the application to me.
If you have a Mac get this application now! Calling it a quick launch application doesn’t do it any justice. If I knew how I would develop a Windows version because it’s so good.
I’m really happy for Andrew because he has dedicated so much of his own time developing an application which is getting positive feedback from the IT community around the world.
I would like to thank all them who organised this fantastic event and am really looking forward to barcamb4!