Help Out Getting a List and Finding The Most Bad Ass Conferences of 2014!!

A Smiling Crowd!

A Smiling Crowd!

Last year I kicked off something that turned into one of the most comprehensive lists of conferences out there. I’d love to get the communities’ help again! Are you going to any conferences? Looking for conferences to attend? Looking to submit talks, hear someone speak or figuring out what conferences are in places you want to visit?

Node PDX

Node PDX

Dive into the list in this public Google Doc and help update it with 2014 conferences. New year, time for a new list! In case the link doesn’t copy and paste the link below into your browser, it’ll get you navigated straight into the spreadsheet.

So far I’ve kicked off the list with Node PDX, missing a few details since it’s unannounced so far, but I know they’ll be announced soon enough. Cheers!

  • Node PDX 2014 (still shows old site, but get info on it by checking out the site!)

So, what’s next on the list?


Could you answer a few questions about hackathons for me?

Hacking Hackathons

Hacking Hackathons

Recently I was talking to Jeff Martens of CPUsage about Hackathons. A few questions came up about what would make a hackathon fun, exciting and worth your time. Here’s a few questions, that I’d love to have a conversation about…

  • What type of hacking would you or do you prefer to do at a Hackathon? Hardware Hacking? Software Hacking?
  • How important are the prizes?
  • What should the prizes or rewards be?
  • How many people should attend that would actually make the Hackthon fun?
  • Have you attended, and if so, what was the coolest thing about the hackathon to you?
  • Are hackathons better as 1 day or 2 days or more?
  • Should hackathons be during the week or the weekend?

…and as you can imagine, there’s a million other questions. What’s your take on hackathons? Got a few thoughts? Throw down a comment or two, much appreciation for your thoughts, next beer is on me!  😉

Node PDX – Introducing Ward Cunningham, Nexxy, Jerry Seivert and Hannah Fousanon!

Here’s the first of a series of introductions for the upcoming Node PDX Conference here in bright and sunny Portland, Oregon!

…and no, that isn’t sarcasm, it’s the summer time now so we’re allowed to have sun and warm weather! With that, the speakers for Node PDX!

Ward Cunningham presenting…

My Sensors Love Node.js

Ward Cunningham

Ward Cunningham

Who’s Ward? In his own findings, “The Oregonian describes me as the Old Growth of the Silicon Forest. I appreciate the thought but move way too fast to be compared to trees. Think of me as your intellectual immune system separating good technology infections from bad. Ditch that fever. Go with node.

As Ward describes this presentation, “I’ve tested a half-dozen home sensor integration technologies over as many years and learned something important about architecture with each generation. I’ve replaced Arduino hardware with Teensy which offers much better USB support. I’ve replace C++ with Perl then with Ruby/Sinatra and now Node/Wiki each time feeling the fresh air of a more friendly and dynamic environment. I’ve plotted results with ascii-art, java-2d, flot and now d3.js which can be a career in itself. I’ll share the good parts of each of these and suggest how you will know when it is time for you to move on.

Nexxy presenting…

Realtime Hardware with Node.js



Key facts about Nexxy:

  • Nexxy has been hacking on things in one way or another SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME.
  • Nexxy is also known for her occasional use of hyperbole as a literary device.
  • Nexxy first began hacking arduinos with node while she was working with a vegan strip club named Casa Diablo.
  • Nexxy is now enjoying her work with Ninja Blocks as they take over the world with the internet of things!
  • Nexxy inexplicably decided at the last second to write this section of the proposal in 3rd person, bullet form.

…and I have recreated this proposal section here for your information!

Join Nexxy & all for another installment of “Realtime Hardware with Node.js” as we take a look at just how exactly one should go about making a fool of themselves on stage with a bunch of electronics. We will cover the basics of getting started with hardware, demonstrate some cool tech, and conclude with a super rad (slightly hazy) and interactive dance party of epic (modest) proportions — if everyone cooperates. Questions are welcome throughout the presentation and audience members are encouraged* to participate.

* bribed with stickers

Jerry Seivert presenting…

Know Your Environment

Jerry Sievert

Jerry Sievert

Jerry is a conousier of fine beer, drinks and other assorted things. The relevant list of coarse includes Lego, trains and JavaScript. His own words of these things, being a drink or beautifully coded up application, “I love to build things!” summarizes up Jerry’s love of building perfectly!

Jerry will pose the question, “What if your software knew about its environment and could react?” With very basic electronics skills, and the ability to read a datasheet, you can be well on your way to a smarter and more responsive application. We will discuss some common hardware protocols and how to interface your code with them to build something all “teh aWeSOME“!

Hannah Fousanon presenting…

Optimizing Single-Page Javascript Websites for SEO



Hannah Fouasnon is a cofounder and lead engineer at DJZ based in San Francisco. While a full time hacker, she’s currently focusing on creating DJZ’s next single-page javascript website optimized around playing media and games. Former projects include Luckysort, a big-data, text-analytics company based in Portland, OR, where she implemented a large portion of the node.js architecture.

Hannah will cover how to create single-page javascript websites and enable developers to more easily support advanced web client features. For example, the persistent playing experience on soundcloud is supported by a single-page backbone.js architecture. One of the downsides when deciding on this architecture is that web crawlers have trouble indexing content, which can hurt seo and facebook sharing.

This presentation covers how we solve this problem at DJZ. The example will be a simplified angular.js application optimized for seo using primarily phantom.js. Viewers can follow along with code on github (link to come).


Want to learn more?

Want to know the dates?

Want to know who else is speaking? Stay tuned here or go check out!

Have a last minute request, idea, comment or a speaking proposal?

Write the Docs, Railsconf Portland, RICON East, Node PDX, Vancouver Polyglot, Open Source Bridge and OSCON…

…if you are deciding what to attend this year, here’s the top of the list.

Just a few key conferences that will kick ass in technical & academic content. The other great thing about these conferences is that they either have a “code of ethics” or are reknown for real conference diversity vs. the “hey a bunch of privileged sameness all ended up in this room purely out of meritocracy” nonsense. So you can rest assured that at these conferences you’ll have interesting conversations, be actively involved in things that will expand our personal sphere of the world and in the end leave you dramatically more enriched than those “corporate warm body vacation conferences“. This list doesn’t mean I’ll be able to make it to all of them, but each conference I’m in some way intimately involved with and fully support with the “Conference Seal of Approval“! So here we go…

Write the Docs – April 8th and 9th – @writethedocs – A new movement, to know where we are, where we’ve been and where we’re going. Get here, know how and why to bring knowledge forth through documentation. This is not your grandpa’s documentation.

Portland RailsConf 2013 – April 29th-May 2nd – @railsconf – The rails community has grown by leaps and bounds. Regardless of your love or hate for the framework, it’s revolutionized the way web applications are built over the last decade.

RICON East in New York City – May 13th & 14th – @basho – (I do work for Basho, but this is on here because RICON last year ROCKED and meets the requirements, come see for yourself!)  🙂

Node PDX – May 16th & 17th – @nodepdx – Troy Howard and I are putting this together, we’re working hard to make sure it’s more of what you want, more than it was last year and kicking to the curb the things you don’t want. So come hack some node, JavaScript and enjoy yourselves.

Polyglot 2013 – May 24th through the 26th – @polyglotConf – Open spaces, with tons of really, truly smart people with no presumptuous marketing and sales bullshit to get in the way. This is about software development, across the realms of frameworks, languages and more.

OS Bridge – June 18th through the 21st – @osbridge – open source bridges the divide here and new thinking is created. You have to attend to see…

OSCON – July 22nd through the 26th – @oscon – This is the premier open source conference in North America. It’s in Portland. Nuff’ said.

I’ll be at a few more conferences this year, but these are the key conferences, if you have to pick one to go to, it should be on this list. If you can go to one or two others, pick em’ from this list. Software + Data + Giant Phat Data + NoSQL + Future Thinking + Leaders o’ Thoughts == Top Conference List.

See ya there. Cheers!

Lists of Lists of Lists: Conferences

RICON 2012

RICON 2012

This is the first in a series (AKA a list) of lists that I’m researching and putting together. I’ve had many questions in the last few weeks for “cool conferences”, “awesome hackathons”, “meetups” and “conferences that are worth the time” and related. So here’s the conferences list so far, I’ll be adding more on my conferences page over time. If you’re looking for the most updated list, check out that page. Here’s what others & I have collected so far. Thanks to everyone on twitter, facebook and those other places we’ve discussed conferences:

Github: @adron

Github: @adron

Developer Conferences

  • Qcon London
  • Qcon San Francisco
  • HTML 5 Developers Conference
  • Web 2.0
  • Velocity Conf Beijing
  • Velocity Conf Santa Clara
  • Strata Conf Santa Clara
  • Strata Conf London
  • Strata Conf Boston
  • Strata + Hadoop World (NYC)

    OSCON (Red Hat table)

    OSCON (Red Hat table)

  • Fluent Conf (San Francisco, CA)
  • Portland Code Camp
  • Seattle Code Camp
  • San Francisco Code Camp
  • Node Conf
  • Node Summit
  • Node PDX
  • Ruby on Rails Conf
  • Cascadia Ruby Conf
  • Strangeloop
  • Defrag / Glue
  • Mobile Web Development Conference
  • Mozilla Festival

    Checking out awesome new tech with Dave McCrory at VMworld

    Checking out awesome new tech with Dave McCrory at VMworld

  • RubyWorld Conference
  • Software Craftsmanship
  • Øredev
  • Monktoberfest
  • Symposium on OS Design and Implementation (OSDI)
  • USENIX Conference on File and Storage Technologies (FAST)
  • High Performance Transaction Systems (HPTS)
  • ACM Symposium on OS Principles (SOSP)
  • BUILD 2012
  • Railsberry
  • Mix12 – Microsoft
  • RealtimeConf
  • Azure Conf
  • DeployCon
  • AWS re: Invent
  • Cloudbeat
  • Structure
  • CloudConnect
  • TacoConf

To add to this list, check out the Google Docs Worksheet I’ve setup or check out the conferences page. The later I will update regularly whenever there are updates to the Google Docs Spreadsheet.

I don’t often ask for RT, tumblr, reddit or other links, but would love to see how big the list can become, so if you have a second please link it, retweet it, like it on facebook or Google+ and get it out there. Thanks!

Updated on Wednesday the 7th of November, 1:37pm 2012
Last Updated 4:41pm on Wednesday the 7th, November of 2012. For the most up to date list check out the conferences page.


In light of the upcoming Cascadia.js Conf I was digging around last night through some of the other JavaScript Conference videos and found the JSConf EU’s listings on Youtube. Here’s a few picks from the ones I watched. I’d highly advise checking these out, there’s a lot of great content there. With that quick introduction, here’s Max, Irene and James. Cheers!

Max Ogden @MaxOgden provides reasons how to help Government work better through various means…  absolutely great talk. Check it out.

Irene Ros @ireneros combining practices we’ve had for years into a better way to get data.

James Halliday (@substack and github) UNIX Philosophy and…  just watch this, James is kick ass and contributes a ton to the #nodejs community.

Coder’s Vacation : Preparation “RICON 2012, HTML 5 Developers Conference and Loading Up”

This next week I’m off to San Francisco for a coder’s vacation. I don’t exactly know what a coder’s vacation is but that’s what I’m aiming to define! I’ll put together a description of my idea of a coder’s vacation below. There are going to be several components about this vacation that really make it a coder’s vacation, such as:

  1. My trip is to San Francisco – This makes it an ideal place to be, as a coder, to hone one’s skills and meet the top people in startups, software and other areas. There is literally coding happening all over the city. Plus it is a fairly nice city to frequent to begin with.
  2. I’m Traveling via the Coast Starlight – This will give me significant time to study up on some of the things I’m learning right now. A little node.js, javascript, go and maybe even some other things while I relax in luxury and enjoy first class accommodations in the sleeper. I’ll also be blogging a bit about this and what it is like to disconnect for a while when you’re in transit between two points. There is some serious time to get out of the rat race and figure out we’re your headed personally, with technology, coding and more (and yes, that is one of my pictures of the Coast Starlight from a few years ago, it is a beast of a train at 15 cars!).
  3. I’ll be attending RICON 2012 – If you’re going to be there, let me know. We should meetup during the conference. Maybe pair up on some code, discuss data architectures, dilemmas and related things or just grab a drink. Since the trip is coinciding with the conference, there was no way I wasn’t going to go hang out with the Basho Crew and their inaugeral conference on #phatdata (see twitter for more context).
  4. I’ll be speaking at HTML 5 Developer’s Conference – This isn’t during the “vacation” part of the trip, but it is in San Francisco.
  5. Pairing up, conversations & coding with others – Because San Francisco is one of the best places in the world for this. I’ll be meeting up with some other coders and working on some ideas around #phatdata, architecture with various frameworks and solutions like Node.js, JavaScript and prospectively some others.
  6. I’ll be tweeting, documenting, blogging, video recording and photographing – Nuff’ said.  🙂


Coder’s Vacation – [kohd]-er’s [vey-keyshuhn, vuh-] – A form of vacation, except that the individual taking the vacation is a coder and participates in coder activities. Such as hackathons, pair coding, maker development, physical computing, learning or reading about new software development technologies or otherwise spends their time on the vacation.

Phat Data (see also #phatdata) – [fat] [dey-tuh, dat-uh, dah-tuh] – I’ve replaced the use of the big data term with that of phat data. It just seems more fun, just as poor a characterization of the topic, so why not. If you can define big data then you can define phat data! So basically, help me define this, I’ll be tweeting about it a lot at RICON 2012.

For more definitions of things I often use in phrases on the blog, check out my dictionary. With this laid out, let the coder vacation begin.