I made the 2 1/2 hour drive down to Indianapolis Saturday morning for the Indy Code Camp. I arrived about 8:30 and after registering, made my way to the speaker table where I found Dan Rigsby, Aaron Lerch, Jeff Moser, Dan Hounshell, Mike Wood and Joe Wirtley. I eventually ran into Jeff McWherter and Jennifer Griffin (not a speaker, but a twitter peep).
While I’ve seen his slide deck before, I finally got the chance to see Dan give his “SEO for ASP.NET Developers” talk and really enjoyed it. SEO is really not something most developers think about and Dan is doing a good job of telling developers why it’s important as well as discussing the things we can do to make our sites rise to the top of the search engines. Because they were scheduled at the same time, I had to miss Joe’s “WPF for Developers” talk, but hopefully I’ll get to see it at an upcoming event.
After Dan’s talk, it was time for my first session of the day. Overall, I think my “Introduction to Castle ActiveRecord, or Stop Writing CRUD!” talk went pretty well. The room layout was funky and I felt a bit disconnected during my code demos, but overall, I had some really good questions thrown at me and hope at least a few people walked away wanting to check out ActiveRecord.
After eating some pizza (thank God it wasn’t box lunches), Dan, Joe, Mike, Jeff, Alan and I hung out and talked until Alan’s first session started. He delivered a great introduction to MVC.NET and TDD. In fact, as his session ended and he was describing what was to come in his second session, I wished I could have bailed out of my “Lessons Learned” talk to attend.
I was really surprised to see 20-25 people in my “Ouch that hurt! Lessons learned from an agile project” session. This was my first time delivering this particular talk, but it was based on my “Lessons Learned” blog posts from last summer. There was some difficulty with the video camera at the beginning of the session, so the first 5-10 minutes didn’t make it to tape, but overall, the talk went pretty well. I did feel like I rambled on a bit more than I should have so I’ll be re-working things a bit before I give it again in Cleveland. I did get a very nice message on twitter after the session letting me know I did a good job and I also had someone tell me it was the best session he attended all day!
I skipped out on the final session to sit at the speakers table and BS with a bunch of the speakers.
While I enjoyed the whole day, I think the highlight was finally meeting Alan Stevens in person. We’ve followed each other on twitter for quite some time and even IM’d once or twice, but to sit and talk to him both during and after the event was a real treat. Alan is a great guy and excellent speaker…very dynamic, engaging and humorous. If you get a chance to see him speak, do it. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
I really have to thank Dan for sucking it up and sitting through both my sessions to video tape them for me. I know you really wanted to see Alan’s second session, but I really do appreciate it. I owe you a beer when we’re in Grand Rapids in a couple of weeks!
I actually won a licensed copy of VisualSVN and can’t wait to check it out. I almost never win anything at these events (unlike Joe Wirtley) and was glad to hear my name called.
While I wasn’t looking forward to driving home in the dark, it’s hard to pass up hanging out with really smart people over dinner and drinks, so I decided to go to the after-party for a while. Someone actually blogged about it while we were there. Gotta love geeks.
I’m not sure how many people showed up for the event, but the guys from Indy did a great job. Hopefully there will be enough demand to do it again next year. If so, I’ll definitely be there!