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AWS Developer Day in Manila : Why we need more events like this?

Not everyday that you get to attend a great informative talk from subject matter experts. Last saturday, I attended the Amazon Web Services Developer Day organized by the Developers Connect Philippines (DevConPH) and hosted by iAcademy in Makati, PH. A free event that far exceeded my expectation. Information overload, so to speak. With the ever changing phase of technology and innovations, talks like these are very much welcome and much needed. Collaborations between solution providers and developers can pave way to innovations. Read on to find what made this event a fulfilling one.

Unlike some of the product-centric seminars that I have been into in the past, I was surprised to find superb speakers  glazing this event. Disregard the fact that this is a free event, there was nothing boring hour in this event. Markku Lepisto and Olivier Klein , both AWS experts,  gave  much information to digest. The delivery technique was above average and it kept us interested through live demos and lively discussions.

Markku Lepisto and Olivier Klein (image from DevConPH FB)
Ill save you from all the technicalities that went through the room ( I may have them on a separate post later ).  Markku set the stage by giving a great introduction on Cloud Computing and Amazon Web Services.  From there the discussion lift off  and the two speakers take  their turns discussing several interesting topics relating to Amazon Web Services. Topics from disaster recovery,  mobile analytics , machine learnings, push notifications to internet-of-things. There were no shortage on introducing the attendees the different cloud services being offered by Amazon. Awesome services like Amazon EC2, Amazon S3, Amazon DynamoDB, IAM, Amazon Kinesis, Amazon SNS, Amazon API Gateway, Amazon Cognito  and Amazon SDKs for IoTs. The discussions were  full of substances, not just plain talks on the products. They showed interesting demos, from source codes to actual configuration of services. The disaster recovery and IoT demo really stand out. All in all, these guys know their stuff and made sure that all questions were answered.

Events like this are important for  developers across the board.  It does not matter if you know cloud, do mobile apps , web apps or you are , just like me, old school coders. Events like this will not teach you how to code, I mean, they cant do that in a day. What it gives you are insights and options. The fact that it opens you to the idea that you have all these tools and technologies at your disposal to create the next big thing is enlightening. You may not be able to use these today on your current work, but, who knows next year or on your job you will need these stuff at your disposal.

The event was far from ideal, there are still rooms for improvement. The speakers were amazing. Registration was great,  the one that you can expect from Eventbrite.  The venue was fitting, it was big enough to accommodate the participants and the amenities was satisfactory. The food was great and yes, unlimited coffee. However, there are some things that can improve :

  • I would have loved to pay an extra if a workshop is included. I know there are a lot of reasons why this is not possible but a workshop with a simple project output would have been awesome.
  • Without any workshop in the plan, I still don't get the reasoning behind the "No Laptop, No Entry" in their confirmation email.It was not even checked during registration.
  • It could have been more interactive if twitter was used not just a ticket to winning the raffle draw. Questions sent via twitter could have been filtered and relayed by DevConPH to the speakers. All in all, the activities on the social media is  a little underwhelming. Then again its the learning thats more important and I guess everyone got a lot of it. 
  • Lastly, I was a bit annoyed by a few participants who were showing a little interest
    and either chatting away or watching youtube. Some never went pass lunch and left the venue after the fact.  It would be a disappointment to learn that some hopeful registrants were whitelisted because the number of participants were limited

All in all, the event was a success. My craving for information  leaves me wanting for more events like this. The partnership of product and solution providers with some of the active developer/user groups is really a great thing for the community. Its one of the way to introduce and push technology to the developers  and for the developers to have the opportunity to add these to their set of arsenals. Looking forward for more of  this, tech talks from  Google and Microsoft would be a must-attend. How about you, any workshop or tech events in your bucket list?  Comment away.


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