Sorry this is a little late, but the last week was pretty hectic coming back off of my few days off for CodeMash.Â It was worth it, though, if for no other reason than the goodies! I love free stuff!
I actually forgot to include my APRESS notebook, CodeGear pen, and a few other goodies that were in my laptop bag. However, what I did photograph there included a CodeMash t-shirt, a Visual Studio 2008 t-shirt, a Microsoft stress relieving ball, an Amazon stress relieving heart, a water bottle from TechSmith, a Sun Microsystems notebook, two can coozies, two footballs, a velcro wire tie, several pens, a magazine, a keychain pulley, an APRESS button, a bunch of CodeMash tattoos, and a plastic cup. I’m silly, but I’ll be a walking advertisement for just about anyone if they give me free goodies.
Now about the conference. I had heard that this conference was a bargain, and it really was. All around, from the room fee to the actual conference cost, my benefit FAR exceeded my company’s financial output. Breakfast and Dinner were catered by the hotel and lunch was a very fulfilling box lunch. There was also all the pop you could drink on hand throughout both days. In addition, there was a social event on Thursday evening with everyone’s first two drinks provided by Quick Solutions.
It wasn’t all about the free stuff, though. There was some tremendous content to be had, as well. On Thursday, I attended Ruby: Testing Mandatory, Crash, Smash, Kaboom Course in Python, LinqTo: Implementing IQuery Provider, and Refactoring for Testing. On Friday, we hit Real World C# 3.0, RESTful Web Services, a few Experts Zone sessions, and socialized. We also enjoyed the keynotes. My absolute favorite talk was Scott Hanselman’s Thursday midday keynote on IIS 7.0. I’ve been a reader of his blog for over a year, but had never heard him speak in person. He was very funny and made excellent points. I might just be developing a man-crush!
I am going to do everything in my power to go to CodeMash in 2009. I would recommend this conference to any developer in about a 5 hour driving radius. I’ve never been to any event like this and I think it is definitely in a league of its own in the Midwest.
January 10 and 11, I will be in Sandusky, Ohio at the Code Mash conference. “What does that even mean?” you might ask. Glad you did. From their site:
CodeMash is a unique event that will educate developers on current practices, methodologies, and technology trends in variety of platforms and development languages such as Java, .NET, Ruby and PHP.
The event will be held at the Kalahari Lodge (an indoor waterpark) and our lodgings are there also. The organizers have arranged a special rate of $88.00 a night for event-goers. Add to that bargain the cost of only $175.00 a person to attend the two day conference (that does have events on check-in night, as well – so 3 days) and this conference is a VALUE!!! Even now, with only a few days left, registration is at $250.00, but I don’t know how many conferences you’ve shopped, this is a steal. Even if your department doesn’t have a large IT training budget, this is priced to fit anywhere.
Let’s be real though. It is only a value if the cost to benefit ratio is weighted heavily on the benefit side. Let’s review, then. Sessions are broken up into several categories: Architecture & Design, Dev Processes & Methodologies, Languages, Rich Clients, Web Frameworks, and the catchall, Other. There is something for everyone with excellent opportunities to learn about things that are outside of your normal work domain or are emerging technologies (like Silverlight – a talk given by
Jesse “Freaking” Liberty Jeff “Freaking” Blankenburg!). You can find out about Code Mash’s sessions here.
I am going to have the most trouble deciding what to attend. Luckily, I am going with my boss, so we can split up and catch more information for our company. I’m very interested in the architecture sessions as well as the sessions on new technologies like C# 3.0, Silverlight, Windows Workflow Foundation, and LINQ.
I also think this is going to be a great chance to meet a lot of developers from this area. So many other conferences are in places like Florida, California, or Las Vegas. The chances of me meeting someone from this area are slim to none. However, at CodeMash, I already know of at least 10 Columbus-area people that are going, and I assume there will be many more.
To be fair, I was planning to blog about CodeMash anyway, but Jeff Blankenburg’s contest certainly added some incentive to get this thing in the books 😉 If you are going, I hope to see you there, if you aren’t yet planning on going… get your butt to the site, register, and I’ll see you there!
Stay tuned, as I will post pictures and a recap of the event. And if I’m not too tired, I’ll try to post an update or two while I’m there.