By Ole Østergaard | September 25, 2008
Some weeks ago, one of my co-workers expressed frustration that her attempts at trying to convince a company to send employees to the JAOO conference had failed. The guys there are doing AS/400 mainframe programming and didn’t really have any interest in going to Aarhus for the 3 JAOO days, probably because JAOO doesn’t feature much mainframe programming.
My first reply when she asked me “why is it that they don’t want to come to JAOO and broaden their horizon?” was a short “because they’re stupid and unintelligent”. Obviously, people who don’t go to conferences are living in their own little world, don’t care about being productive, couldn’t care less about clean code, and just want to stay in their little, pathetic world as long as they can get away with.
Or… perhaps they’re just responsibly doing their job? I started thinking… do I get more productive just by going to JAOO? Do I automatically write cleaner code because I’ve been at a conference? Don’t I mostly go to the talks where I can get my existing opinions confirmed so I can feel a little better? How long will it take for the 3 JAOO days to have “cashed themselves in”? If I start using all the new frameworks and technologies that I learn about, will that do anything else than cripple my projects and confuse my co-workers? Does it really matter that I’m into the recent buzzwords, like cloud computing, monads, shadow classes, V8?
In fact, the AS/400 and DataFlex programmers I’ve met are extremely productive. Their applications might not fit into my world of “clean code”, but does that matter? They are extremely agile in their own sense, creating and modifying applications in much the same way as you do in recent frameworks like Ruby on Rails, only they’ve used their tools for ages and know them inside-out. They might not care what Microsoft or IBM is up to these days, but so what?
I’m really looking forward to the 3 upcoming days at JAOO, and contrary to what I’ve expressed above, I’ve got plenty of reasons to believe that it’s worth my time. I’ll keep those reasons to myself, though, because I’m more interested in your reasons – please leave us a comment. That way, we just might be able to make this and future JAOOs an even better experience for you.
See you next week!JAOO | Tags: conference, JAOO, JAOO Aarhus, Ole Østergaard | No Comments »