My Journey to DevconfCZ 2017: Part 2

Hello and welcome back, I hope you liked the Part 1 of my article. The previous article covered my journey to the hosting city of DevconfCZ 2017. The journey was great and expectations became high. I wished the conference days would go as awesome as my journey went.

Man, I wasn’t wrong, as you will see, the conference didn’t only lived upto my expectations, it exceeded them by a great extent. So, let’s start.

Day 1: The conference starts

For me, Day 1 started at around 6 a.m. in the morning, when I was very excited to go to the conference. Although the keynote session was scheduled for 9:15 a.m., I planned to reach the conference venue quite early. Well, I had my reasons for doing that (getting the badge which will allow me to enter the social event after Day 2 of the conference). As my rule of thumb, I had already decided to explore the place mostly by walking to different areas. This day wasn’t going to be any different. I stepped out of my hotel at around 7:00 a.m. and configured my map based navigation to navigate me to the event venue. While doing this, I wasn’t aware of the adventure I was going to undertake. The adventure started, as soon as I started walking away from my hotel. The weather was cold and windy and above that, I had to let my gloves go off, because I could not interact with the display of my mobile with the gloves on. The second amazing thing happened when the maps decided to take me to the event venue through a highway with speeding traffic. Well, somehow, this journey of 2.5 km from my hotel to event venue came to an end after 30 mins of walking, numb hands and running nose :P.

The atmosphere inside the venue was quite controlled and heated up and provided me a deep breath of relaxation. I was there at the event venue more than a hour before the inauguration keynote. Soon afterwards, the registration for the event were thrown open. Being a speaker, I went to the speaker registration desk, where I was warmly greeted by the volunteers who helped me register for the event. This was the time, I got my first set of Devconf swags :D, some food coupons and a few toffees 😛

Soon after the registration, I started to explore the event venue.

Soon, I entered the main conference hall, where the keynote session was going to take place. The time I entered the hall, the hall was being setup by the volunteers at the venue and there were going to be some interesting booths that were being placed.

For some time, I started interacting with various people who were already there at the event venue. Soon enough, the time passed and the keynote session was about to start. I immediately rushed into the hall and very quickly, it became houseful.

After an interesting start to Day 1, I was all set to interact with a few people and attend some sessions. The day went like this, and soon it was evening. The organizers planned a city tour for the attendees at the Devconf and I registered to go for the city tour. A beautiful city is what I can describe about Brno.

It was night, and being very tired after the whole day, I came back to my Hotel and quickly went asleep.

Day 2: The conference continues and Social Event

Day 2 of the conference was a bit relaxed for me. As much as I was excited for the conference, equally excited I was for the social event that was going to take place after the conference that day.

Day 2 was filled with quite some interesting sessions that I really wanted to attend. Although, there were times when I wanted to attend two sessions which were scheduled at the same time, But, at the end, I am human and can’t just replicate myself 😛 so I must say, thanks to the session recordings, those helped me a lot.

In between day 2, I realized that my laptop charger is not compatible with the sockets at the city I am currently in. This created a bit of tension for me, since I had to setup a few demos and my laptop was nearly extinct of its charging. This was the time, I started asking people around, who can lend me a charger for sometime, but of no use. Different laptop models created a problem. Soon, I decided to contact the organizers to help me out with the issue. Even while organizing a event at such a scale, the organizers were readily available. Soon, one of the organizers help me get the problem sorted out. Finally, now I had a charger for my laptop that I can use. Hats off to the organizers.

Soon, the day 2 of the conference was coming to an end and it was close to the time, when we had our social event. As soon as the last session of the conference was over, I hurried back to my hotel, to get myself refreshed and ready for the social event.

The social event was going to take place in a nearby club, named Fleda. While walking to the party venue, I was excited and a lot many people too were also walking beside me, excited to reach the venue. As soon as I reached Fleda, I was surprised to see so many people already inside the venue.

The ambience was great and food, I can’t comment on that (being a vegetarian :P). Pastries served my diet. The social event was a great place to interact with different members of the community and discuss some ideas. The social event went awesome, and more interestingly, I made some new friends at the event.

I came back early from the social event, due to my talk which was scheduled for Day 3 of the conference.

Day 3: My Talk and the Conclusion of the Conference

So, Day 3 was here, the D-Day, today was the day, when I had to deliver my talk. The nervousness caused me to wake up early on the day (Not sure if I actually slept or not :P). I woke up and booted my laptop up, started to go through my slides which I have prepared for my session. The time flew fast, it was time to get the breakfast and reach to the event venue.

As soon as I reached the event venue, I realized that today is gonna be interesting. Partly due to my nervousness and partly due to the number of sessions on the same track that I was going to speak on. The excitement was there, and chills too.

Before my session, I thought to go through my demos and slides once again just to buildup a bit more confidence. Time really flies by and you don’t event get to realize. It was 1:50 p.m. and my session was going to start 10 mins. afterwards. Woah! The time has come. Along with the session chair, I started to setup my laptop and calibrate the screen. People started entering the room, and soon, the room was nearly full (Yes! That meant a lot). Slowly, I built up the confidence to get started with my session and soon I was up and delivering on what I had prepared for the day. Finally, I was in the flow. No tension, no nervousness, a few jokes during the talk and focusing on what I want to deliver.

An hour past by and my talk was over. It was time for the Q&A session with the attendees. The questions came by, giving a nice insight into the topic I was delivering on. A round of applause and my session finally came to an end. I was really thrilled and felt good after my session.

After a few hours, it was time for the concluding ceremony of the conference. Walked into the main hall and it was getting full quickly. The organizing team came up, and it was time to win some swags, by participating in a small quiz. The quiz went awesome, although a few swags were still left, up for grabs on first come first serve basis. I quickly rushed to the table, got myself some swags and soon the whole hall was empty.

This brought a great end to a great conference which ran for 3 days. With some awesome organizers, great volunteers and lots of awesome food, it was an event I will surely attend again the next year.

Once again, hats off to the organizers and volunteers who pulled off such a great event, to the speakers who put in their huge amount of effort to deliver on their topics on interest and answer the questions being put up by the attendees.

Also published on Medium.

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