Opening the doors of next year’s edition

Sep 01, 2014 by Alexandru Bolboaca in  Announcements
door-open
Photo courtesy of Beth Walsh (Flickr)

Work is already well underway for next year’s unconference. Read on to learn more about what happens when, the confirmed keynote, call for speakers and new website.

Timeline for 2014

We’ve created the first iteration of the plan for this year. In case you were wondering, here are the key milestones between now and the end of 2014:

  • Sep 03: New website goes live
  • Sep 03: Call for papers opened
  • Nov 03: Registrations opened
  • Nov 10: Program announced

Confirmed keynote

As we announced in May, we already have confirmed one of the keynote speakers for 2015. Simon Brown is a renowned architect and trainer on agile architecture and author of Software Architecture for Developers. With a schedule as busy as his, we’re sure glad it matched our dates for next year’s I T.A.K.E Unconference.

Call for speakers open

We have opened the call for speakers. For next year we decided to keep the topics that you hold dear: architecture, design principles, TDD etc. and also add some new areas that are becoming more and more popular these days: mobile, big data, scaling architecture etc. Visit the page to learn more.

If you know somebody that has something valuable to share with our audience, we’d appreciate it if you shared the link for the call page.

New website

We hope you enjoy the new website we’ve created. Based on your feedback during the past two years, we decided to come up with a new design that is accessible on all mobile devices. We’d like to thank our partners at Gorilla Studio for their effort and creativity with the new design.

We’re really excited for next year’s edition! So far things look great and we are committed to delivering the best edition yet to all our attendees. See you there?

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Do you like the new website? Have any questions about the call for papers or the unconference? Let us know in the comments.


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16 years of legacy code with mob programming and Lego | Joe Wright

Feb 13, 2017
Enjoy the following series of interviews with the speakers, top-notch software crafters from across Europe, joining  I T.A.K.E Unconference, Bucharest, 11-12 May. Discover the lessons learned and what drives them to challenge the known path in their field. 

 

Joe Wright, Senior Developer, Coach & Architect, helps people deliver software that’s well designed, fully tested and released early. You will learn from his case study at #itakeunconf about how a team can go from individuals to a mob.

 

speaker-badge-professional-status-joe-wright

 

#1. Share with us 5 things from your experience that helped you grow & become the professional you are today

 

# Make time for deep work
Set a few hour blocks aside each week that you will dedicate to improving yourself or creating something each week. As a parent, I’ve had to start doing this by getting up early to grab two hours each day. During this time you can learn a skill, practice coding, write a book or make a podcast. It’s far too easy to let distractions rule your life. Make time to do something you are proud of.

 

# Become a facilitator
I think everyone is terrified of public speaking. It’s an unnatural thing to do. Our ancestors learned this behavior as a survival instinct – if lots of carnivores are looking at you then you are probably the dinner. Time to run.
Getting over this is an important step that enables you to have all sorts of life experiences. Speaking at conferences, leading workshops and meeting interesting new people. The way I beat the fear was by volunteering to co-organise a well-attended meetup. Each month I would have to get up in front of a room of my peers and say some boilerplate about welcome and the agenda. But just that act of getting up and speaking was enough to dull the fear over time. I’ve not been made into dinner yet.
As well as building yourself up as a speaker, it helps improve your network of people. People like speaking to the host at an event and it gives you an easy opportunity to learn about those people, then take a mental note when you might want to get into contact with them in the future.

 

# Ask for help
Don’t feel you have to figure everything out yourself or read up online. Reach out and ask people for help.
As you spend more time in your career you meet more people – and one day you’ll have a question you’d love to ask them. It’s even easier now with social media and video conferencing. People will give you 30 minutes of time online or meet you over coffee to give you their advice if they think you’ve got an interesting question to answer.
I always have a list of three things I want advice on. You never know who you are going to meet.

 

# Improve in more than one dimension
At first, newly minted developers want to get projects released and in users hands. During this, you try to get better at creating software that can be changed to meet their needs. Eventually, newer technology comes out, which promises to solve the problem of getting code out quicker and is easier to change.

 

It’s quite easy to fall into the trap of just learning technology stacks. This can be rewarding, but that’s not the only way to improve as a developer and meet people’s needs.
Seek out opportunities to see the world from the other functions in software. If you tester goes on holiday then volunteer to stand in for them. If you have an ops team then ask to pair on making the release process smoother. Facilitate a retrospective for another team. Run a usability session with real world users to see how your product is used. Stepping into another roles shoes helps build empathy, which will allow you to work better with others people in the future.
If you tech stack isn’t challenging you then concentrate on improving your “soft skills”. Teach someone how it works. Figure out ways to promote and resolve conflict on your team. Fix the root causes of communication and process issues that slow you down.

 

# Find people that will challenge you
It can be hard to get feedback about how you are doing. Are your ideas valid? Often you can’t get this feedback in your workplace. Seek out a group of people or a person that is willing to challenge how you think.
For me, this is the Lean Agile space and my local code craftsmanship group.
Consider these people that challenge you your core group. The way you work should be consistent with the ideals of that group. So don’t ever worry about saying what you think at work, just make sure you stay true to the principles of your core group.

 

#2. What challenges will the participants find solutions to during your session at I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017?

  • How can I reduce communication, approval, and tech debt issues from slowing down my team?
  • How can I measure and improve how a dev team spends their time?
  • How can I get started doing this at my work?

 

#3. Recommend for the participants 3 sources you find inspiration from and would help them better understand you

  •  Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport (book)
  •  Facilitation advice – available here
  • The Goal by Eliyahu M. Goldratt and Jeff Cox (book)

 

 

 

ITAKE_2017

 

Want to join Joe, +30 international speakers and ~300 software crafters from around Europe?

Register now for I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017!

Covariance and contra variance. Say what ?!

May 09, 2017

Enjoy the following series of interviews with the speakers, top-notch software crafters from across Europe, joining  I T.A.K.E Unconference, Bucharest, 11-12 May. Discover the lessons learned and what drives them to challenge the known path in their field.

Alin Pandichi, Software Developer at MozaicLabs and facilitator of the monthly Coding Dojo meeting that is part of the largerBucharest Agile Sofware Meetup Group, will share during his talk at I T.A.K.E Unconference more about Covariance and contravariance.

 

#1. Please share with us 5 things you did that helped you grow & become the professional you are today

I’ll answer this with a little bit of story telling about how I became a software developer. The first two things that helped me were attending the computer science oriented high school and college. There, I learned the basics of computers and programming languages. I also noticed how effortlessly I was solving CS related problems, so maybe I was onto something.

Number three: I got my first job straight out of college, developing a Swing rich client application saving data with JPA. This put me face to face with real world problems. I was faced with the fact that continuous learning is a must in this industry.

Therefore, number four on the list is learning. For the first few couple of years, I kept devouring every Java-related article I could find on DZone. With each one, I found out something new: a useful tool, a Linux terminal command, a development methodology, etc.

Last, but not least, is getting involved with local software development communities. I started attending meetups such as The Bucharest Agile Software Meetup Group and the Bucharest Java User Group. Gradually, I became an active member of both, giving a helping hand in organizing their events. On top of that, I also got involved in the wider community of Global Day of Coderetreat. My talk at I TAKE 2017 is one of the occasional opportunities I get to share what I know.

 

#2. What challenges will the participants find solutions to during your session at I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017?

They will find it easier to understand the concepts of covariance and contravariance, and how they are applied in the world of programming. In my experience, it was very easy to forget what these two words meant. Not anymore.

 

#3. Recommend for the participants 3 sources you find inspiration from and would help them better understand you

I dream big, so my biggest source of inspiration is science fiction. My first serious SF encounter was with Frank Herbert’s Dune series. Out of the contemporary authors, I enjoy Neil Gaiman’s work very much.

Whenever I get a chance, I tune into Nick Francis’ podcast called Quiet Music. It is a blend of low beat music of various genres: electronic, jazz, instrumental, folk, light rock, and so on.

Cinema is one of my other hobbies. I am very much interested in following every film festival happening in Bucharest. Also, the Romanian cinema of the past two decades has offered many gems so far, and it continues to do so.

 

Want to join Alin and ~300 software crafters from around Europe?

Register now for I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017!

Powering Interactive Data Analysis with Google BigQuery

Mar 29, 2017
Enjoy the following series of interviews with the speakers, top-notch software crafters from across Europe, joining  I T.A.K.E Unconference, Bucharest, 11-12 May. Discover the lessons learned and what drives them to challenge the known path in their field.

 

Marton Kodok is a Senior Software Architect REEA, who led the implementation of complex and distributed systems. At #itakeunconf 2017, he will share more about Powering Interactive Data Analysis with Google BigQuery.

 

speaker-badge-professional-status-marton-kodok

#1. Please share with us 5 things you did that helped you grow & become the professional you are today

 

It all started when I was posting answers for the Stackoverflow community and the reputation started to grow over 100k. I realized that being a professional is a constant effort and never ending learning of new cool stuff. To be up to speed you need to constantly shift to emerging technologies. You see the merit when your answer voted and uncounted millions of people also learn.
We need to be open-minded and have a mentor around us to grow. As you might not have a mentor close to you in person, you can leverage online communities such as Stackoverflow, a community that helps you grow. It helped me.
Then when you take it offline and be supportive & active in local communities, participate in Startup Weekends, community projects you believe in – you will be able to work on fun stuff. Also being part of an IT company such as REEA, it helped me become a professional by all the great startup projects I had to work on, the colleagues, the clients, and also the conference participations.
In 2016, I was nominated and accepted into the Google Developers Experts program. Having my exemplary work recognized by the greatest company in the IT industry and pointing me as an expert and outstanding professional, it gives me new goals to achieve even more.

#2. What challenges will the participants find solutions to during your session at I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017?

Nowadays there are dozens of options to choose how you architect your project for next level of data analytics. We will cover how Google BigQuery helps to solve the petabyte scale data warehousing, and ability to write complex queries for your dashboards.

#3. Recommend for the participants 3 sources you find inspiration from and would help them better understand you

My inspiration inbox is Feedly, there I consume all sorts of content I really enjoy reading: High Scalability, Percona Blogs, Codrops, Medium, SIMB.
ITAKE_2017

Want to join Marton and ~300 software crafters from around Europe?

Register now for I T.A.K.E Unconference 2017!

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