So my current employer organizes this annual conference where I am at the moment.
24 hours a day.
Among some of the most well known names, Mitch Altman (who brought some of his projects with him, of which my favorite was the Virtual Reality goggles) and Andrew "Bunnie" Huang are here (and yes, there's even a soldering station and a bunch of Chumbies around).
There have been talks on a number of subjects (I gave a new talk myself: "How to survive your first few months of Perl"; but more on that later).
Josette, from O'Reilly, is also here, and O'Reilly books seem to be a huge success around this crowd.
Microsoft brough a bunch of XBoxes (I really enjoyed Halo 3 and Gears of War 2) and an Interactive Canvas , and a number of other partners brought several other gadgets and innovations (I briefly saw some hologram-related thing).
In one of the rooms, some folks are building 3 arcade machines (yes, those with the huge screens, the joysticks, and that things that eats your coins). I hear one of the machines will be one of the prizes on the upcoming contests.
Starting a few hours ago, a 24 hour programming contest has started.
Tomorrow, each group will be presenting what they've accomplished in 90 seconds, and not a second more (some of you may recognize the idea as being originally from Yahoo!, I believe).
Judging by what I saw last year, we're in for a treat.
Given that last year several people complained that it was hard to find experts to help them, this year there is something new: the Codemasters.
The Codemasters are basically SAPO people who've been assigned a t-shirt with the name of the technology they excel at; then, since their boss is around, those people are forced to hang around and help everyone with their projects.
- There's a guy taking the opportunity to create his very own first CPAN distribution;
- There's someone doing something Jabber related (I was asked for help with installing a module);
- There's a guy who won't tell anyone what he's working on, but he was using regular expressions to parse C code;
- There's someone doing an image web crawler;
It feels good, doing my part, as small as it may be.
In about 20 minutes, a Quiz Show starts. I'm on one of the teams, and I'm eager to see what happens.
There's free food and beverages (beer too, yes) all of the 72 hours.
Everyone's badges have RFID tags, and there's an API that allows you to see where each person is ATM (of course, some people preferred not to wear the tags).
Unfortunately, there's no RFID reader in the bathrooms, or I'd have an interesting project of seeing the affluence there throughout the days.
It's being wonderful.