And, mod_perl rocks.
He was specifically speaking about mod_perl 2.0, and the approach was very nice. The presentation began with a detailed step-by-step account of his first experiences with 2.0, including the problems he ran into and the steps he took to resolve those problems. This was the most refreshing thing about the sucks/rocks approach, in my opinion. Not only were the solutions to these problems given, but Geoff explained the approaches he took to find those solutions (rather than only explaining the steps involved in the solutions themselves). If everyone could do this, it sure would be a neat thing. I think too many people are concerned with wanting everyone to think that it all comes easily or naturally. The truth is that some things are just not intuitive, and even the things that are to some people, aren't for others.
At dinner, many topics were discussed, including PHP (which made me feel somewhat like a foreign diplomat), Perl, mod_perl, ApacheCon, OSCON, books, publishers, and even a lot of non-technical topics.
The really interesting thing about mod_perl, especially 2.0, is that the focus is in exposing Apache's C API in Perl. This grants a lot of power and flexibility to the developer. After seeing some of Geoff's examples, I am more motivated than ever to research PHP's apache_hooks SAPI, which has a similar goal. I am sure that George would appreciate having a bit more community interest in the project, and certainly there are some advanced PHP developers that could make good use of such a thing.