Sunday, October 13, 2013

Warsjawa 2013

To be honest I'm still quite shocked how it all developed and worked out. Warsjawa since few years has been quite exceptional kind of conference. It was always free, organised by community and for the community. However since few years it is containing only workshops - no pure traditional presentations at all. Now it seems that it may be one of the largest events of this kind around - or at least I'm not really aware of any other one like that. 

Year ago it contained 10 workshops and nearly 200 attendees showed up. This year it grew into:

- 42 workshops
- 53 presenters/coaches (tbd)
- Nearly 500 attendees
- 12 sponsors
- 8 volunteers

During retrospective within organising committee after previous edition we had few ambitious plans for next one. Ok… it was mainly Wojtek Erbetowski who was throwing ambitious ideas while I was the sceptical one ;) Last Saturday most of those actually happened and worked beyond our initial expectations. After several months of preparations this is really rewarding experience. :)

It is worth mentioning that this is also quite an achievement for the whole Warsaw/Warszawa JUG community. Other conference under JUG umbrella - Confitura - had over 900 registered attendees this year. Nowadays there are 3 well organised and independent groups of people responsible for biweekly WJUG meetings, Confitura and Warsjawa conferences. However we are still one WJUG community and it is truly awesome to be part of it. During past few years I was not that much active however I had chance to be one of JUG leaders and part of organising committees for both conferences in 2008. Looking back I think this community has never been as vibrant and active as now. 

Just to complete the picture with few highlights about Warsjawa 2013…. 

This year we had really great variety of topics. Main categories:

- JVM - inlc. Profiling, Java 8..
- Frameworks: incl. Wiciet, AngularJS, Vert.x, JBPM, Struts2
- Design Patterns 
- Scala - 3 different ones about language itself, Play2, Akka…
- Architecture and Testing
- Cloud Computing - Vagrant, Chef
- Build Tools - Gradle, Phabricator
- Mobile - iOS, Android
- Hardware Fun - Arduino
- Soft & Agile
- NoSQL / Big Data - Storm, Cassandra, R, ElasticSearch

Dedication from presenters and coaches was quite amazing. Many workshops lasted 6h. Konrad Malawski deserves to be mentioned separately for teaching Scala for the whole day. 9h in raw…. it is quite an achievement! 

Most stressful part for the organisers was to provide stable and reliable internet connection - really critical for workshops. Wifi is pretty known to have reliability issues with so many devices around. Therefore we invested significant part of conference budget into huge number of network switches and patch cords. This should really give you an idea about our dedication… 

Traditionally we are really grateful for the support from Warsaw University. Warsjawa hijacked over 20 rooms at the The Faculty of Mathematics, Informatics and Mechanics. It really matters for us that we are always warmly welcomed there.

We also had really exceptional squad of volunteers that helped a lot with final preparation. Few coming from Krakow - which is not a short journey to make. Such people really bring the motivation! 

Ok… I could go on and on… Looking forward for next year and enjoy the photos!