As many other people have blogged, CodeMash was great. I've made a couple of previous blog posts about CodeMash, but I wanted to summarize my CodeMash experience. The opening session Wednesday night on languages was a good start to the conference, bringing together developers using many different languages. On Thursday, I went to sessions on TurboGears, space based architecture, smart client development, and bringing .NET and Java together. On Friday, I went to a couple SOA oriented presentations, an ASP.NET/AJAX presentation, and gave my own continuous integration presentation with Dan Hounshell. As you can see, I attended quite a variety of presentations, which was great.
The keynote sessions were definitely a highlight of the conference for me. The opening keynote by Neal Ford on domain specific languages provided a great introduction to that topic and the idea of language oriented programming. It was a great introduction to the ideas of domain specific languages and will have me doing more research on the topic. The second keynote presentation that day was by Bruce Eckel titled "The World is Dynamic". It was a unique combination of good information, great quotes, and images from the Burning Man festival. The single keynote on Friday was by Scott Guthrie on the upcoming LINQ capability in .NET; I've seen LINQ before, but it was great to hear it from Scott Guthrie himself.
My favorite speaker of the conference was definitely Neal Ford. Some of that is probably nostalgia. Neal was a part of the DSW group, so I know his name from years ago when I was doing Clipper development. And after Clipper, both he and I did Delphi development. So in addition to being an entertaining presenter (i.e. WS-* = WS-Deathstar standards), he speaks from a point of view that is generally consistent with how I think. After his participation in the language roundtable on Wednesday night, I wanted to see the rest of his presentations, which I almost accomplished; I missed the presentation he gave when Dan and I were presenting.
And I can't finish this post without expressing my thanks to the CodeMash organizers. CodeMash was a community conference and I can only begin to imagine how much work it took to organize and run such a great conference. Keith Elder has a great post with photos of some of the organizers. Many thanks to the organizers.
I definitely recommend that you keep an eye out for CodeMash 2008, which I expect to be even better.