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petdance (2468)

AOL IM: petdance (Add Buddy, Send Message)
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I'm Andy Lester, and I like to test stuff. I also write for the Perl Journal, and do tech edits on books. Sometimes I write code, too.

Journal of petdance (2468)

Thursday August 11, 2005
12:02 PM

OSCON 2005 wrapup

[ #26242 ]
Why stay current with blogging, when you can let the stuff pile up for days and post it all at once!
  • Had lunch with my editor, Chuck Toporek, to celebrate finishing Mac OS X Tiger In a Nutshell. I finished the last chapter the day before I left for Portland, and not a moment too soon.
  • It was pretty cool seeing my name on Pro Perl Debugging in the Apress booth. I've never had a co-author credit before. Apress asked me to be in the book signing group, but I wouldn't feel right signing PPD as if it was mine. I added to it, and helped Richard write it, but it's 95% his words. I guess I'll have to wait until next year to be in the signing line for the Tiger Nutshell (if not something else...)
  • I met lots of behind-the-scenes O'Reilly folks like Tony Stubblebine, and Justin who was kind enough to update the headshot on my blog. Now I look slightly less goofy.
  • Talked to Denise Kalos, O'Reilly's VP of HR, and Joanne Van Kampen, her head talent finder, about the problems of finding qualified technical people. I've had a programmer position open for a while, but my problems hiring are nothing compared to those of a company like O'Reilly. I have a new favorite interview question: "What are you an expert in?"
  • While I was out in the hallway talking to Denise and Joanne, I was wanting to make my way back into the hall because I knew the yearly awarding of the White Camels was coming up. I heard "Stas Bekman", and I figured it was time to get back in there. As I walked in, I heard "There he is!", and David Adler in a tie, hand out to shake mine. I had one of the three awards! I was so honored. I only wish I'd been able to be there for it!
  • You know the party is a good one when someone comes around asking "do you have any EMT skills?"
  • Kathy Sierra's tutorial "Creating Passionate Users" was great, when I could hear it. It just didn't work well in the room she was in. With such an interactive session, it was very frustrating to have unamplified audience members.
  • One of the booths was Gibson, the guitar manufacturer. A half dozen guitars hung from their kiosk, plugged into mini-amps and headphones. They were cool to have there, but basses were severely underrepresented. Some of us can barely handle four strings, much less six. Maybe next year, O'Reilly can get Ernie Ball, the guitar and string manufacturer who have dropped all Microsoft products in favor of open source products response to a raid by the BSA.
  • Schwern, Ian Langworth, Robert Spier and I talked to SpikeSource about doing testing on Perl and CPAN. It'd sure be great to have a company to help us with testing on many platforms and configurations.
  • phroggy so to clarify, we're at the bottom of the stairs in front of Starbucks.
    waltman there's a starbucks INSIDE the convention center?
    roger69 yes there is
    roger69 this is the pacific northwest, after all
  • The Ruby on Rails guy used a great term that I love, derisively referring to XML in config files as having to do XML Situps:

    <situp position="up" />
    <situp position="down" />

  • Before my talk on project estimation and tracking, I asked Damian Conway to introduce me, per his suggestion in "Presentation Aikido." He came up with about a minute's worth of the nicest things I've ever heard anyone say. I was so honored. Key point: "Andy is the Anti-Damian."
  • Next year, I need to develop a clone before I go, so I can go to sessions, but still have my clone go to the hallway track and keep up there as well.
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