Back in 2013, some of my colleagues at IDRsolutions visited Devoxx in Antwerp, Belgium. They came back really enthusiastic about it as the best Community conference out there. Since there, Devoxx has spawned multiple other Devoxx conferences in France, UK, USA, etc but the Belgium event is still the biggest and best…
By the community, for the community
The topics at Devoxx are proposed and chosen by the community, as opposed to any vendors. This is great, because it means the conference covers nothing but the most interesting topics from the cutting edge. You’ll also notice there’s a fairly big Android presence – which is never mentioned at JavaOne. Compared to other conferences, it’s much less corporate, and feels more friendly.
The big screen
Devoxx Belgium likely has the most unique venue for a conference. Hosted in the second-biggest European cinema complex, the Kinepolis, each talk feels like it should have some popcorn to go with it – they quite literally get the big screen impact. Taking full advantage of the venue, they even show a movie one evening during the week!
More presentations than you can shake a stick at
The sheer amount of content at Devoxx is nothing less than astounding – with up to 6 talks happening simultaneously from early morning until late evening, there’s definitely something for everyone. Furthermore, the Oracle speakers tend to give the same talks as at JavaOne – no need for a trip to San Fran!
In my opinion, the best way to learn something is to experience it. Armed with my trusty laptop, diving head-first into the labs to try out new things is for sure going to be one of my highlights.
With the General Availability date set for September 21st, I expect there to be tons of fresh content involving what people are doing with Java 9 – in particular, Modularity and project Jigsaw, JLink, and JShell.
Fast internet… at a conference?
With over 1700 concurrent users connected at the same time, the venue isn’t the only impressive part of Devoxx. Try not to trip over the fibre cables in the car park!
I think my family and friends might be looking forward to this more than I am, but it’d be a waste to go to Belgium and not buy any. Whether or not it makes it back to the UK, however, is another question…
Are you planning on going to Devoxx in Belgium this year? Maybe you were at Devoxx Poland last week – let us know in the comments!
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