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ngConf 2017 Day 1 Review

Read review of day 2 here. Read review of day 3 here.
Attending ngConf is a first for me on two different levels. It is my first time attending this annual conference. And secondly it is my first time speaking at this conference. After my first hour at the conference I came to the conclusion that it will not be my last time for either one. Here is my review of Day 1 of ngConf 2017.

Schedule & Location

ngConf is held in Salt Lake City in basically one massive ballroom in a hotel in Salt Lake City, Utah. The event runs officially from April 5th — 7th. But there are optional full day workshops that are held on a wide range of topics on April 3rd and 4th.

Code of Conduct

This is one area that the conference clearly excels at serves as a standard that all conferences and companies in the tech industry should mirror. The first speaker on the first day in his first sentence brought attention to their Code of Conduct. Quite possibly there were incidents in previous year where people did not fell welcome because of the actions of others. They made it very clear this behavior would not be tolerated at all.

I applaud the organizers for their stance on something that is pretty prevalent in the tech industry. If other companies had this stance then recent issues that have occurred at companies like Uber and Zenefits would not have happened. I hope that attendees will take this stance back to their work places and start a change from within to improve the culture.

Speakers

If you work with Google’s Angular programming language then you will have the opportunity to listen to the team members at Google that are writing the software at this event. In addition anybody that is a big name in the Angular community is either here attending or speaking. Hats off to the organizers for creating such an incredible lineup of speakers.

Here is a list of speakers on the first day of the conference: (NOTE: GDE is Google Developer Expert)
Stephen Fluin — developer Advocate working on the Angular team & former GDE
Igor Minar — Software Engineer at Google
John Papa — Principle Developer Advocate at Microsoft & former GDE
Minko Gechev — Senior Software Engineer at Learn Capital
Austin McDaniel — Chief Architect a Swimlane
Deborah Kurata — Developer InStep Technologies, author of ng2-bootstrap
Justin Schwartzenberger — Lead Engineer at SoCreate, host of AngularAir
Matias Niemela — Developer at Google
Shai Reznik — Chief Crazy Officer at HiRez.io
Tim Ehat — Technical Lead at Domo
Jeremy Elbourn — Angular Material Team Lead at Google
Miles Malerba — Software Engineer at Google
Sergio Cruz — UI Engineer & Instructor at Code School
Lukas Ruebbelke — Author
Roger Tipping — Founder & CEO Infiltrade
Joe Skeen (and daughter Gwen) — Senior Software Engineer at Documatix
Jon Boyd — Lead Developer at biznas.io
Jacob Turner — Software Engineer at Domo
Hans Larsen — Software Engineer at Google
Tobias Bosch — Software Engineer at Google
Ben Lesh — Senior Software Engineer and development lead of RxJS 5
Tracy Lee — Co-founder of This Dot, Inc
Justin Searls — Co-founder Test Double

Single Track Conference

This is the first tech conference that I have ever attended that is a single track event. Simply that means that every attendee sits in a big room and listens to the same speaker all day.

Usually conferences are multi-track. This means there are multiple speakers speaking at the same time in different rooms and attendees have to choose which speaker they want to listen to. The challenge with multi-track conferences are that sometimes you have to choose between two speakers that you want to hear and know that you will only hear one. With a single track conference you don’t have to make this choice.

Topics Covered on Day 1

  • There are 23 speakers speaking from 9AM to 6PM. This is clearly not an exhaustive list of all the topics that are covered on Day 1.
  • Reactive Programming with RxJS
  • How to improve your code production by using snippets and other tools
  • Why you should learn more than one programming language
  • How the compiler and compile process works in Angular 4 and why it can decrease the size of your application
  • Angular CLI — what you can do with this amazing tool
  • Memory leaks in your application and how to find them and fix them
  • STEAM (improvement of STEM by adding Arts) and how you can get more people programming at an early age
  • Upgrading to Angular from AngularJS
  • How to architect your application using thoughtful component design
  • Angular Sandbox
  • Animations in Angular 4
  • VR with Angular and WebGL

Extracurricular Activities, Food and Drinks

Sitting all day in a room listening to speaker after speaker can be challenging. The organizers realize this and they break up the day with some exciting activities.

They event provides breakfast and lunch. They are snacks that are put out mid morning and mid afternoon. They have soft drinks and water available also.

My Review of Day 1

This is a very professionally run conference. I have volunteered at many Tony Robbins UPW events which clearly sets the standard for a professionally run multi-day event. This event is on par with the production of a Tony Robbins event. The company that is managing the production clearly understands how to use music and visuals to sublimely control the crowd so hats off to them.

Walking into the main room, you immediately react to five really, really, really big screens. There are 3 screens at front and 2 at the halfway point in the room. The screens in the back are a blessing because with so many attendees, you can be quite a distant from the stage and unable to actually see the speaker.

Here is a short video of the room that I shot from the stage.

The main room is broken into thirds. The right and left sections have tables with electrical outlets. It is great to be able to open up your laptop and take notes without having to balance your laptop on your lap.

The content that was covered on the first day was amazing. I took exactly 4 pages of notes from what I learned on day one. Most speakers brought attention to what they were doing from the inside and you cannot buy this level of insight and knowledge.

The developers at Google were honest and open about their long term plan and strategy for Angular. Getting this information allows attendees to take this information back to the employers and utilize it in planning their strategy at work.

Considering the cost of a ticket, you definitely get a positive ROI on the price your paid in exchange for the quality of information you receive. Definitely worth attending.

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by Jennifer Bland

I am an Entrepreneur. Mountain Climber. Neil Diamond fanatic. World traveler. MBA grad. Software Engineer. Interested in hiring me? Contact me at ratracegrad@gmail.com

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