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Speaking at SpringOne 2GX

Last week I went to Washington DC to speak at the SpringOne 2GX conference. I have to admit that I was really excited about the conference but, at the same time, I was nervous because I had no less than three talks!

But let’s start from the beginning. After a 9 hour-flight from Madrid I finally arrived at the Marriott Marquis Hotel, which was the conference hotel. I later knew that it’s the biggest hotel in DC.

Shortly after leaving my luggage I went to see the city: The White House, The National Mall, Washington Monument, Word War II Memorial, Reflecting Pool, Lincoln Memorial,… The city is really beautiful and I really liked it. According to Google Fit I walked more than 10 kilometers and it seems it was a great idea to fight against the jet-lag. The second day I also spent the morning visiting the city so I chose the Air and Space Museum, The Capitol and then the Library of Congress. After that I was ready to start the conference.

After getting my badge we had some hours to talk with the sponsors, get some swag and then had the dinner just before the Keynote.

The dinner was at a very big room because there were more than 1000 attendees! I think that this picture doesn’t really show how big it was.

Then we had the first keynote and the day ended with some drinks and talking with a lot of people.

The next two days and a half we had a lot of talks to choose from and sometimes it was really complicated to decide between them. I spent most of my time with the Groovy-related talks but I also attended to some Spring talks.

At the end of the second day we had the Groovy and Grails keynote in which Guillaume talked about Groovy and its future now that they are an Apache project. Then Graeme did an amazing live-coding session explaining the nice things that we can now do with Grails 3 and how esily we can use all the spring-boot-related stuff in Grails.

My favourite talks

From Source to Bytecode: Deep Dive into the Groovy Compiler by Cédric Champeau: Cédric explained how the Groovy compiler works, all the phases and a lot of internal details. It was a very technical talk and I really liked it a lot.

Applying Groovy Closures by Venkat Subramaniam: Venkat explained from the very beginning what’s a closure, how we can use it in Groovy, the differences between a closure and a lambda. During his talk he used a lot of examples and some jokes to explain everything. It was a very funny and interesting talk. I thought some time ago to propose a talk just like this and know I think I have new ideas for that talk.

Groovy and Grails BOF

There was also time for a Groovy and Grails BOF session in which there were a lot of great questions (and answers) for the Groovy and Grails teams.

My talks

It was my first time at SpringOne 2GX and I did three talks:

  • Testing with Spock: The Logical Choice. It was a live coding session in which I explained why you should use Spock, all the nice things that you can do with it, and how we can write expressive and easy-to-read tests. I was very nervous because it was my first talk but I think it went really well based on the feedback I got from the people:

    Best session I had so far! Came in with no knowledge and left with great understanding of spock and a little groovy.

    This was the best prepared, best presented topic I have seen so far at SpringOne 2GX. Thank you!
    The only improvement I would suggest is to separate your Thank You slide from your Questions & Contact slide so we have a clear prompt to give you the applause you deserve!

    loved it!

  • Grails & the real-time world: On my second session of that day I was more relaxed than the previous one. I talked about how to build a new architecture for Grails applications using Spring Integration to decouple all the components. I had some demos and everything went well. I also got good feedback:

    Very useful information. Very accessible. I feel I will be able to immediately adopt a powerful new approach to programming using the spring components introduced in the talk. Everything was very clear. Thank you.

  • Full Stack Groovy Developer: I was really excited about this talk because it was about the #LearningSpringBoot contest I won several months ago. I developed an application for the contest using only Groovy for all the layers: backend, tests, javascript, html, android,… and I explained how I did it during the talk. The demo and everything worked fine and I also got some feedback:

    I enjoyed your presentation and felt that you gave a very fair explanation of both a full stack developer as well as all of the interesting pieces that you used to piece it all together.

    I also liked your positive attitude and the “friendliness” that you showed. It is always nice to listen to presenters that are humble developers that love the language and programming rather than the ones that think they are better than everyone else.

    Thanks Ivan!

So yeah, I finished the conference pretty excited and I still had a little bit more than a day to spent in the city.

That afternoon I went to have dinner with some of the Groovy people and it was really fun. As a curious thing that happened was that after ordering the beers for the dinner the waitress asked to show her our IDs. Do we really appear that we’re under 21? 😉

I finally met Dan Woods and give him a Greach t-shirt and I also gave some t-shirts at my talks.

Finally I also met some people such as Greg Turnquist (the author of the Learning Spring Boot book) and Paul King (Groovy contributor).

With this conference I’ve finished my #IvánOnTour2015 which has been AMAZING! I’m really looking forward to the 2016 conference season.