‘Sold Out’ is occasionally misused. Event organisers, keen to publicise the popularity of their event or more likely afraid to admit the opposite, quote an event as being Sold Out when in fact it is far from so.
API Days in Paris was Sold Out, I mean really sold out, packed to the limit, standing room only for the key note sessions. There was good reason for this. The API Days team pulled together a top draw set of speakers, my personal favourite being Mike Amundsen from CA Technologies, his talk on Revisiting Geddes’ Outlook Tower was genius.
API Days has a great policy of not allowing speakers to simply pitch their products or do demos of their stuff. This rule is followed by most, and ignored a little by some of the big guys, you could Google or Tweet that if you don’t know who I mean… Mostly though the policy leads to interesting, thought provoking presentations about the wider industry – Francois Bourdoncle on the New Industrial Revolution and the place of Natural Monopolies and Full Stack Start Ups for example.
Industry clichés were kept to a minimum, the only iceberg in sight was in an otherwise excellent presentation from Patrice from Orange regarding the Internet of Things but focusing on the amount of data this will create, the possibilities of services arising from that data and the inevitable security and privacy issues.
My final presenter mentions go to Tony Blank from Context.IO and Swift from Major League Hackers who gave great talks on Developer Evangelism and Developer Events respectively. Despite Tony using the well worn ‘Devs hate marketing and BS’ (because we non-techies all love marketing and BS) his talk was great and gave a real insight into the life of a Developer Evangelist. Swift gave a real world, practical talk about how to evaluate developer events (not just hackathons); his words and advice struck a chord with us as they echoed a lot of the advice we give to clients when considering event attendance and sponsorship.
The audience was a good mix of developers and commercial people and the sessions were divided to suit both. The sold out crowd even passed The Day 2 Test. The picture below was taken at 9.05am on Day 2, I’m about half way in the room, there’s about the same number of attendees behind me.