GoRuCo 2008 Wrap-up

Posted by Curtis Miller Curtis Miller

As I stated in a previous post, I attended the Gotham Ruby Conference this past weekend in NYC. It was a great time with many interesting talks. The weather was amazing as well. I don't want to spend a lot of time rehashing the conference because you can view the GoRuCo 2008 presentations for yourself, but I did want to mention a few things I got out of it.

Bryan Helmkamp gave an interesting introduction to story driven development using rspec and story runner. This is something we've been talking about at Integrum, but haven't had a chance to use in a real setting yet. Derek and I got to spend some time at the WePlay offices (where Bryan works) and they showed us some of the stuff they're doing, including using story runner. It was awesome to hear about their experiences and hopefully we'll get a chance to use it soon.

Next up was “Archaeopteryx: A Ruby MIDI Generator.” I was skeptical about this one, but was blown away by Giles Bowkett's presentation. From recounting his life adventures, including a “psycho throwing rocks at his dad until he threatened him with a piece of rebar” to calling venture capitalists “weasel-brained muppet fuckers… they're not fools, they're liars.” He kept the crowd well entertained, but threw in some really interesting and well-delivered points about startups and life. It is well worth watching.

Another one that really stood out was Ryan Davis' presentation about “Hurting code for fun and profit.” He had a lot of really great things to say about being a developer, so go watch it already!

These speakers helped me to become aware of a few things:

  • I don't read enough. Ryan mentioned that the average developer reads 1 book a year. Is one book a month really so hard?
  • I don't hurt my code enough. I don't use flog or heckle consistently and I often don't take the time to correct code that I know should be improved.

I definitely have some things to work on… how about you?

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