Conference Love

Posted on Tuesday, Sep 23, 2014
Conferences - some people are addicted, and others have never been. What is the point of conferences? What’s an unconference? Why shouldn’t I just stay home and watch the livestreams? Jason Dixon (Monitorama), Bridget Kromhout (devopsdays Minneapolis), and Pete Cheslock (devopsdays Boston) give their two cents (and more) about why conferences are the place to be.

Show Notes

  • What was the first tech conference you attended?
  • What are things you get from a conference that you cannot learn other ways?
  • How can I maximize my value out of attending a conference?
  • If I’m going to a conference where I don’t know anyone, how can I still have a good time?
  • You both have planned conferences. What are some of the things that go into organizing that people might not be aware of?
  • What is your favorite conference story?
  • How do you learn about new events to attend?
  • How do you pick which events you know about to go to? There are a lot, and it can be hard to narrow down when you only have a 1-2 conference limit from an employer, or your own resources.
  • What was the coolest piece of “swag” you got from a conference?
  • Does the swag at a conference weigh in for you at all? I hear a lot of noise around the big Google events because everyone knows they are walking away with hardware.
  • Lets talk about conference etiquette, and discuss some of the points in Bridget's article

Notes:

Introversion and Tech Conferences by Tom Duffield

Check Outs

Jason

Bridget

Pete

Trevor

Matt

Guests

Bridget Kromhout

Bridget Kromhout

Bridget Kromhout is an operations engineer at DramaFever, the largest streaming video site for international content. She’s been paying the bills with Unix sysadmin work since the last time ‘flannel shirt over babydoll dress’ was a trendy look. Her CS degree emphasis was in theory, but she now deals with the concrete (if ‘cloud’ can be considered tangible). She likes finicky wide-column data stores, stats-driven monitoring, formal grammars, bicycle-powered camping, and butchering pumpkins for home canning. In her spare time she helps organize her local AWS meetup and devopsdays Minneapolis.

Jason Dixon

Jason Dixon

Founder of Monitorama. Author of the Graphite Book. Previously: Librato, Dyn, GitHub, Heroku and Circonus.

Pete Cheslock

Pete Cheslock

Pete is currently the head of Operations and Support for Threat Stack, a continuous security monitoring company. Pete is a 15 year veteran of the technology industry and sees Threat Stack solving a critical problem around continuous security monitoring with dynamic, cloud based infrastructure. Previously, he built out the automation and release engineering teams at Dyn, managing and deploying mission critical global DNS infrastructure. Prior to Dyn, Pete was the Director of Technical Operations for Amazon-Backed cloud archiving company Sonian, where he developed and managed a Petabyte scale archiving application across multiple public clouds.

Hosts

Trevor Hess

Trevor Hess

Trevor Hess is a Partner Solution Architect focusing on Microsoft at Chef Software, working with Microsoft to ensure that Chef is delighting customers and prospects on Windows and the many parts inside Azure!

Coming from a background in .NET Software Development and consulting, he has worked with several large multinational organizations to help kick start their journey to the cloud and the world of DevOps practices and principals. He is excited to engage in new experiences, and learning opportunities.

Trevor enjoys having hearty discussions about DevOps as well organizational change and transformation.

Matty Stratton

Matty Stratton

Matty Stratton is a HumanOps Advocate at PagerDuty, where he helps dev and ops teams advance the practice of their craft and become more operationally mature. He collaborates with PagerDuty customers and industry thought leaders in the broader DevOps community, and back when he drove, his license plate actually said “DevOps”.

Matty has over 20 years experience in IT operations, ranging from large financial institutions such as JPMorganChase and internet firms, including Apartments.com. He is a sought-after speaker internationally, presenting at Agile, DevOps, and ITSM focused events, including ChefConf, DevOpsDays, Interop, PINK, and others worldwide. Matty is the founder and co-host of the popular Arrested DevOps podcast, as well as a global organizer of the DevOpsDays set of conferences.

He lives in San Francisco and has three awesome kids - Henry, Joey, and Sophia, who he loves just a little bit more than he loves Doctor Who. He is currently on a mission to discover the best pho in the world.


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