Walking with Fedya or a vacation programmer

    Vacation - this is the time for which there are traditionally many plans. Go to the sea, learn to ride a windsurf, clean up the balcony, etc. Traditionally, only a small part of these plans is implemented. Last year, the sea and the beach got tired on the 4th day, surfing in early June suddenly turned out to be a very cold event (at least in the Sea of ​​Japan this is so), and the balcony made me sad. It was decided to break the system and this time spend time to good use. I’m engaged in mobile development, and by a fortunate coincidence, it was at this time in St. Petersburg that the Summer Festival of developers was held, in particular, the Mobius 2016 conference. The wife was promised a large-scale promenade in local boutiquescultural attractions, I obviously was going to communicate with all sorts of smart people and generally do networking. No sooner said than done, and in early June we arrived in St. Petersburg.

    Mobius was held traditionally for large events in the Park Inn hotel on Victory Square. The theater begins with a hanger, and the conference begins with signs. In this case, the organizers went further, and identified a special, pleasant young man who told in detail how to get to the library in the conference room. For the first time in my memory, I did not have to ask the local hotel administrators. As it turned out later, I entered from the other side of the building, but the road was easy to find. Offset.

    All new arrivals were met by a colorful and very talkative character named Robot Fedya. Fedya moved on 3 wheels, turned his head in all directions, took away sweets from the children , and claimed that the apocalypse could be avoided if everyone carefully listened to the reports. Most of those present agreed that Fedya was a great guy. This is a very entertaining feeling when you perceive as an interlocutor exactly the object that you see in front of you (regardless of implementation details). The effect is greatly enhanced when the dialogue is seasoned with humor: instant sympathy arises. It is possible that in the near future, our understanding of robots and communication with them will change dramatically (hello Mr. Lem!).

    - Fedya, and who are your parents?
    - The robot has no parents.
    - And who is there?
    - Manufacturers!

    It is no secret that in the modern world technology companies are one of the main engines of progress. Free access to source code and usage rights is becoming common practice, and altruism is not the issue. Specific technological ideas begin to mean much less than the groups of people who are able to generate these ideas. This attracts like: if a developer sees a team of talented people who have provided an impressive solution, he wants to join them - to learn new things and to contribute. It is very pleasing that an understanding of this fact is increasingly reflected in modern Russian conferences, and Mobius was a prime example. Rambler & Co, SberTech, Badoo and many other Russian and not so many companies represented their decisions. In between reports, the conference sponsors were automatically in the spotlight: zones were allocated for Odnoklassniki, Epam Systems, Kaspersky Lab and Luxoft. The trickiest arranged something like a lottery, where a mini-test on mobile development was used as a ticket. Classic Win-Win: a lot of people came to the conference who want to develop and try themselves on new horizons, and companies need developers.

    I got acquainted with the program in advance, then made an approximate “route” through the halls. Initially, I was afraid that I would have to choose a lot between parallel reports (recently I mainly work with iOS), but it was quite simple to choose. It turned out that this is no coincidence: the program was specially distributed in the areas of iOS, Android and cross-platform. I have been involved in quite diverse tasks: UX elements, architecture, test automation and coding itself. Perhaps only this feature of the work made me hesitate in choosing, for example, between the reports “Reactive MVVM” by Evgeny Rtishchev from Sbertekh and “Typography in iOS” by Irina Diaghileva from Rambler & Co. In most cases, visitors knew quite exactly which next report they were planning on going to.
    Of course, there were reports in which I did not understand anything, made notes where it was worth filling in the knowledge gaps, at least superficially. From the experience of attending such events, I can say that this is completely normal, moreover, it is not always worth rushing into the unknown. It often makes sense to wait for the hype to subside. But for an adequate assessment, what is just hype, and what is the future of the industry, you need to communicate! In my opinion, this is the main task of any conference: to organize effective communication between colleagues in the workshop, an intensive exchange of ideas and contacts. Practice shows that this is best achieved between reports: at lunch, coffee breaks, after-party, etc. According to a specific technology, you can watch a video on YouTube at home, or even better, read the documentation immediately :)

    - Fedya, your voice is somehow hoarse! Didn’t you catch an hour? Maybe you should tie a scarf?
    - Nothing, I'll warm up soon.
    “What if you rust?”
    “Peter doesn’t spare anyone ...”

    Special attention deserves an organizational solution that I had not previously seen at other conferences. This is the so-called speaker zone, which solves the very common problem of getting out of the schedule of reports.
    Usually at conferences, going beyond the allotted time is not due to the fault of speakers or problems with the equipment. Failure always occurs in the same way: an interesting (as a result, often provocative) report is guaranteed to lead to holivar. Questions from the audience can be divided into three categories with three different motives. The first one is to clarify the details: the adversary really needs information, he plans to dig in this direction in the future and wants to clarify a number of points that will help in further searches. The second is to supplement the report and show that "I am also in the subject." The third is to prove that the speaker is wrong :) Traditionally, the organizers rely solely on questions of the first type: they can be planned in the style of “we have 10 minutes, we will have time to ask 5 questions”. In practice, in issues of the 2nd and especially the 3rd type, a collision of “bison” occurs regularly, the duration of which is no longer possible to predict. It doesn’t mean at all that this is bad: the audience often watches the process with interest, because they have the opportunity to see an alternative point of view. In the case of Mobius, the organizers acted cunningly: all questions of this kind can be asked in a specially designated place, and not in the mysterious "lobby".

    A couple of days ago a letter came with a link to very high quality prepared video materials from the conference. Everything is laid out on shelves, a distinct installation and sound, in general it is clear that a lot of work has been done. In general, I love the quality in detail, and this final touch inspired the writing of this article. It is very pleasant that conferences in Russia have reached such a level. Such moments in many respects inspire work and creativity. I wish the Mobius team success on the chosen path, and to all readers on Friday without releases. Thanks!

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