With 12 session tracks on Saturday, followed by unconference sessions on Sunday and encore performances of Saturday’s most popular presentations, WordCamp NYC last week was by far the biggest WordCamp I’ve attended. Then of course there’s the real reason people go – the after party on Saturday (there was also the sponsors and speakers party on Friday, which was a lot of fun too). At the parties I got to do what years of social training had previously convinced me was unacceptable: discuss code while drinking beer. I got to chat for a while with @garthkoyle (from Event Espresso), @jason_coleman (of Paid Memberships Pro fame), @vidluther (from zippykid), and @tinakesova (from Siteground).
My presentation was on object oriented programming for WordPress plugins (my slides are below). I decided to focus on OOP in general with PHP, as its simply a huge topic to try to cover in 30-40 minutes. The room was full and there were good questions at the end, so it went well. I was 1 of 3 presenters from WebDevStudios – Brad presented on WordPress security, and Eric on the rewrite API.
Brad treated us to a great dinner afterwards (ribs!) and I stayed up too late with the WebDevStudios team Saturday night (including honorary team member for a night, Captin Shmit – yes that’s how he spells it). I found out at 2AM (when I checked the conference web site after we got back to the hotel) that the unconference presentation submission I made earlier in the day had been scheduled for Sunday morning.
So on my way back to the conference Sunday morning I stopped at CVS to get post-it notes and dry erase markers, for doing an Agile project management workshop. Aside from scribbling some notes 20 minutes before the session started, I didn’t have a detailed plan, and it turned out to be a lot of fun. My session was right before lunch, which turned out to be great, as almost everyone stayed after the time was up, and we went for another half hour. I started the session by having everyone describe their client relationship and software development problems (in brief post-it note format) and collected those on one side of the white board. Then I had them describe the things they want to achieve in their business (also in post-it note form), and collected those on the other side of the board. Then we spent about an hour talking through how to get from one side of the board to the other. It was only enough time to scratch the surface of Agile practices, but what made the biggest impression on everyone is how almost all software development teams face the same challenges, and that there are ways to deal with them that are concrete, achievable, and rewarding. ContentRobot selected it as one of the best sessions.
To continue with the shameless self-promotion, here are some tweets about my talks:
And here are the slides from my OOP talk (the last half of the slideshow contains my slide notes).
If you want to see more, check out the WordCamp NYC 2012 site and ChrisDigital has a collection of links to other summaries, and slides.