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DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper 8 – DDD8

By pcurd

The latest event in the DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper family, DeveloperDeveloperDeveloper 8 happened at the Thames Valley Park Microsoft site on Saturday 30th of January and I was amongst the 340 or so lucky ticket holders.

This year one of my friends, Rob Ashton (@RobAshton) was speaking along with some old favourites including Simon Sabin (@Simon_Sabin), Richard Hopton (@RichardHopton), Ben Hall (@Ben_Hall) and Barry Dorrans (@blowdart). I was also pleased to see Jon Skeet (@jonskeet) presenting as I had never before had a chance to see him live.

The turnout seems impressive which is to be expected considering the length of the waiting list – over 200 people within 15 minutes of the event “selling out”. At lunch, as always, seating was at a premium and even the grok talks, organised by Zi Makki (@ZiMakki), were full.

As DDD8 was the last community event Barry Dorrans was likely to present at for a while (due to his recent appointment to Microsoft), I think it is only fitting how popular the event has been. Even Barry’s book (Beginning ASP.NET Security) sold out. I was fortunate to get a signed copy which I will be sure to keep in my collection.

Jon Skeet was also kind enough to sign a copy of his latest book (C# in Depth) which I impulsed purchased.

The sessions I attended were:

Test Driven Development to save time, money and your sanity by Richard Hopton

Richard has a clear and simple approach to explaining TDD and although most of the content wasn’t new to me, his techniques and clarifications certainly made my own approaches seem more sensible. His session showed an introduction to the whys and hows of TDD and his code demo was efficient and explanatory, showing TDD and writing tests in an understandable way.

Multi-Tenant ASP.NET MVC Projects by Rob Ashton

Rob did an excellent job handling the room and although a lot of his content could be considered seriously technical, he explained it with ease and clarity. His to the point code demos conveyed the subject matter and complimented his slides and explanations exceptionally. His dry sense of humour came through and the controversial topic met with many questions that he handled with grace and technical accuracy.

C# 4 by Jon Skeet

I had been told that Jon was an excellent speaker and his reputation is well deserved, I enjoyed the level of detail and appreciated the amount of code – showing the changes rather than explaining the changes not only made them make more sense but also showed how and why you’d use the new features.

Not Everything is an Object by Gary Short (@garyshort)

I have never studied any kind of Functional Programming so was looking forward to hearing about it from Gary who has always been an excellent speaker when I have seen him before and I was not disappointed. As well as a good introduction to the fundamentals of Functional Programming, Gary launched into a humorous and informative history of programming language development. I know I’ll take at least something out of his comparison of inanimate objects and classes.

A Developer’s Guide to Encryption by Barry Dorrans

Knowing this was going to be Barry’s last talk at a DDD for the forseeable future, and last community event before “jumping the fence”, it was bound to be an entertaining talk and it was. Several of the organisers had arranged some.. interuptions themed around Barry’s departure. After several videos from people like Liam Westley (@westleyl) and Phil Winstanley (@plip) (including Barry’s poor book being burned to keep Phil’s hands warm) a video from Barry’s past showed up – The Crystal Maze. I’ll let you guess how that went down! The presentation was excellent (between videos) and as always Barry’s technical content was great. Of course, Barry’s book (Beginning ASP.NET Security) will fill the gaps!