Mark Stephens Mark Stephens has been working with Java and PDF since 1999 and has diversified into HTML5, SVG and JavaFX. He also enjoys speaking at conferences and has been a Speaker at user groups, Business of Software, Seybold and JavaOne conferences. He has a very dry sense of humor and an MA in Medieval History for which he has not yet found a practical use.

Business of Software conference

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One of my favourite conferences to attend is the Business of Software conference. As a rule I do not go to many conferences – they can be very hard work and I am not always sure they justify the time but BoS is one I always jump at the chance to attend.

I think what makes BoS different is that is not a ‘professionally’ organised conference. That is not to say is not to say it is not properly organised – last year was the slickest event I have been to in a long time. It is put together by Neil Davidson, the founder of RedGate software, who puts together the sort of conference he would really want to go to (and it seems a lot of people agree with him).

Last year it was in Boston and this year it is going to be in San Francisco in November. I spent last year’s conference meeting loads of people, being bombarded with ideas. I came away both reassured and challenged in how I run IDR Solutions, so I signed up for the 2009 conference as soon as it was announced.

One of the best parts of the conference is the Pecha Kucha – 6 people each get to present 20 slides and talk for 20 seconds on each slide. Having watched it last year, I decided to throw my hat into the ring this year and my talk (Asteroid impact – are you a
big lizard or small and furry) has been accepted. It is about the current state of the software industry, and with clients in sectors such as media, construction and News, we can see first hand some of the changes happening.

It will be great to have a chance to talk about something other than PDF and Java, and it will be much harder to do such a short talk – I’ve done longer talks at JavaOne and Seybold and they are much easier. Still, it gives me a chance to show lots of cute kitten pictures, if nothing else 😉

My bit-part aside, the conference looks like it will even better than last years, so I am really looking forward to it. If you are attending, please do come up and say hello and I hope you enjoy it all as much as I will.

Mark Stephens Mark Stephens has been working with Java and PDF since 1999 and has diversified into HTML5, SVG and JavaFX. He also enjoys speaking at conferences and has been a Speaker at user groups, Business of Software, Seybold and JavaOne conferences. He has a very dry sense of humor and an MA in Medieval History for which he has not yet found a practical use.

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