Every year I go to Prairie DevCon which is put on by the stylish and dapper fellow who is Dâ€™Arcy Lussier. Â Every year he schedules me in the worst speakerâ€™s spot and laughs and laughs. Once he put me in the last spot of the conference and gave away free beer in the room next to me. 3 people came to my talk. 1 left when I mentioned the free beer. Come to think of it, he really isnâ€™t so much dapper as an ass.
None the less he finds interesting topics and great speakers. I wanted to highlight the talks which I think are going to be reallyÂ interesting. Probably after reading this Dâ€™Arcy will change my schedule so I canâ€™t attend any of them but Iâ€™m going to take the risk:
1.Â Machine Learning for Developers â€“ In university I tried some machine learning and it was terrible. That being said it is a reallyÂ interestingÂ field and if it really is possible, with modern tools, to get something built in an hour then Iâ€™m adding machine learning to everything.
2.Â A Primer on LESS and Sass â€“ The last time I tried to design a website 3 large men broke down my door and broke my fingers. They said that I had killed all the beauty in the world and that if I ever designed another site they would be back and they would bring pizza. Â I donâ€™t know what that means nor am I anxious to find out. Â Eden, on the other hand, can design things and she is a computer scientist. So when you can learn about CSS from a designer to knows how to program you should jump at it.
3.Â *Building Cross-Platform Mobile Apps with Sencha Touch and PhoneGap -Â *Iâ€™m starting to really think that PhoneGap is the way to go for developing the vast majority of mobile applications. It is the only real way to get cross-platformÂ compatibilityÂ and itâ€™s also quick to develop. Iâ€™ve played a bit with it but I really am excited to see how a skilled person can use it. I donâ€™t really know anything about Sencha Touch, so that should be fun to learn too.
Git Magic â€“ A couple of conference back David Alpert taught me a bunch about git. I havenâ€™t used any of it. Frankly I felt like the advanced stuff he was teaching me would only be used if you had somehow failed to use git properly and had messed up. Iâ€™m starting to change my mind about that so Iâ€™m going to give James Kovacs a chance to solidly change my mind.
Hacking Hardware â€“ I talked a couple of months back with Donald Belcham about his experiments with hardware hacking and was inspired. Not inspired enough to actually do anything but still inspired that a software guy could pick up hardware. Iâ€™m super curious to see what he has built.
There are many other interesting looking talks out there but these were my top 5. If youâ€™re nearÂ Winnipeg or if you can run there at the speed of light you should pick up yourÂ conferenceÂ tickets now and come out. It will be a riot.