acts_as_conference – Day Two

Saturday morning got off to a good start with a talk on Netbeans from the guys at Sun. Being an Eclipse user for most of my work, it was refreshing to see how polished a product NetBeans is.

They demoed a lot of features for the rails community and contrasted them against TextMate which I believe sets the standard. I checked out NetBeans at home later and will definitely do some of the tutorials they have online.

In my opinion, the most impressive talk of the second day was on JRuby. JRuby answers most of the concerns management has at my work of using rails for any significant development. I hope it really helsp make the case for both the language and the framework.

Another good talk was given by Charles Brian Quinn of Big Nerd Ranch fame.

During the past few weeks at work, we’ve been debating training options for our development team and I have repeatedly put Big Nerd Ranch on the list for both Python and Cocoa. While we do not work in neither of these languages, I believe our team can strengthen their skills playing outside our regular playing field. This is something we rarely do and I think hurts us as a team. Its like developing in a vacuum and missing out of most out of our area of expertise. Nothing has come out of this yet thou.

Charles gave an insightful talk mostly from the trainers perspective. His lessons were worth noting for most developers who ever had to teach or train on some skill-set.

The closing keynote was given by Obie Fernandez mostly on developers honing their craft. It was a very encouraging talk and it was well received by the audience. Great job.  It reminded me of the book The Pragmatic Programmer a few times.

Overall, acts was a great conference put by Atlantic Dominion Solutions; I had fun and enjoyed all the talks I went to. I’ll be staying up to date with the rails community in Orlando… They have a very active user group (ORUG) and there is some overlap with our local Adobe group (Adogo).

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