I flew over Tuesday evening. It was quite windy with a fair bit of turbulence on the flight. A decent tailwind meant even though we left Adelaide late, we still got into Sydney on time.
The conference kicked off with a keynote from Jennifer Marsman talking about using EEG and Machine Learning to perform lie detection (on her husband!). Not sure about the lie detection, but I do like the application of EEG to enable things like controlling a wheelchair, and it was useful to learn about the different kinds of algorithms and models you used for different types of problems.
Edith Harbaugh gave a good overview of using feature flags. She is from Launch Darkly, a company that provides ‘feature flags as a service’, though her talk was more general. One point she made was that feature flags can be dynamic – something that can be changed at runtime, not just a config setting that is set at startup.
Rounding out the day with Jimmy Bogard doing CI with Azure. Wednesday evening there was a cruise on Sydney harbour. It was a little chillier than the last time I’d been out, but nice food and great to socialise with other attendees.
— Ben Laan (@benlaan) August 17, 2017
Then it was my talk on using Chocolatey and Boxstarter! All my demos went off without a hitch and there were lots of questions from the audience. I think the early attendees appreciated the bonus chocolate frogs too. Thanks to Ben for coming along and being a friendly face in the front row (and taking the photo!)
I hung around because Bart De Smet was up after me diving in to a bunch of areas of .NET to watch out for when you really care about performance.
Finally a bit more Michelle Bustamante with more Docker – this time looking at some of the orchestration tools.
Thursday evening there was a social evening, including a bunch of pretty funny “short stories about failure” from some of the speakers. Some people partied on late into the night, but I retired early.
Kylie Hunt talked about dealing with problem bosses. A mix of good suggestions and sharing personal experiences. Maybe I’m just an old fuddy-duddy, but personally I’m less impressed by speakers at conferences that need a swear jar.
There was the option of attending PubConf after the main conference had finished, but I’d already made plans to catch up with some old Adelaide friends who are now living in Sydney. It was really great to spend Friday evening and Saturday with them before my flight home in the late afternoon.
All in all, again NDC Sydney didn’t disappoint and I can only hope it continues to grow and get better next year. There were quite a few times where I was spoiled for choice. I’ll be looking forward to catching up on missed sessions when the recordings are published in a few weeks. It was great to see the Adelaide contingent growing from 2 last year to 9 (that I know of). The word is getting out that this is THE developer conference you should attend!