For the past few years, Google has been hosting DevFest events in several cities all over the
For the past few years, Google has been hosting DevFest events in several cities all over the world. It’s a couple of days where developers, designers and other software professionals get together to hear the latest on google technologies and related topics, straight from the engineers who work on them.
On November 1st and 2nd, we had the second edition of the DevFest in Buenos Aires. Hexacta sent around five or six excited participants each day — I got to be there on day one.
Android and Internet computing caught the focus this year. The event featured a number of presentations on Android, Chrome and HTML5, Application Engine and GWT. Not all of them were purely technical: we also heard tips and guidelines on how to make the most of these products to build great applications (and hopefully sell them, too!). We will be writing all about it on our IT Blog.
I really enjoyed attending this event. The presentations offered well-chosen contents in a clear way. The speakers did an amazing job charming their non-English audience and keeping them interested, even when things got rather technical. Organization was spotless. And of course, as everything that comes from Google, the event was just plain cool.
However, I left with the feeling of wanting more from it. Experiences like these often have the problem of being “too unidirectional”. Even when there’s room of Q&A, which wasn’t the case for all presentations, it is not enough for the attendants to feel they are getting something valuable for their time. ‘I could have just watched this online’, was the most usual comment I got when I asked around for impressions.
I don’t exactly agree with that — there is still something different about the personal experience, plus, do you really take the time to watch a 45-minute talk online? — but I do get the point. Events such as this one need to become more participative. Ask people for their opinions, test their knowledge with exercises, make them stand, move around, or anything that will encourage them to stay active. Especially if you’re Google, one the most innovative companies in the world! I hope next year they’ll get creative not only in product, user experience or methodology, but also on how to make their DevFests truly unforgettable.Go Back