I very nearly didn’t go to Ruby on Ales, but I’m very glad I did. RoA 2011 was the most fun I’ve had at a traditional (non-unconference) conference since RubyFringe. The talks were well-curated; full of original content, largely free of done-to-death topics, and for the most part they went beyond stereotypical “library HOWTO” subject matter. The venue was a real gem: a working theater furnished with comfy chairs and with a bar at the back instead of a popcorn stand. The food was several cuts above typical conference food. And Bend itself was a terrific choice for a setting: being able to walk a few blocks at most to every single after-hours dinner, drinkup, hack night, etc. was delightful.
Also, the beer really was phenomenal. And I don’t say that lightly; South-Eastern Pennsylvania doesn’t have much to crow about but I can name a half a dozen superb breweries within a 50-mile radius. So I’m a bit biased. Bend, with its remarkable proliferation of brewpubs, satisfied even my discerning palate.
In short, Ruby on Ales is now firmly on my short list of conferences to make it to again in 2012. Many thanks and much praise to the organizers for putting together a conference that went above and beyond the (already good) typical Ruby conference experience.
Ruby on Ales was my very first conference. That’s probably not a good thing, because every other conference will now have to live up to my impossible-to-replicate standard 🙂
Side note: If anyone reading this is going to Red Dirt or RubyNation, do not miss Avdi’s talk about Ruby’s Exception architecture/api. It was the most practical knowledge I took home.
Thanks for the complement! Unfortunately for readers, I will not be giving that talk at Red Dirt or RubyNation. I’ll be talking about DataMapper and “Confident Code”, respectively.
P.S. Holy shit, you wrote Relish and we didn’t talk about it at all while at the conference? Doh! I love that app!
Ohhh yeah now I remember you requesting a beta invite 🙂 You been using it for client apps?
I’m reluctant to bring up anything Cucumber related….. if I hear “not worth the extra work” one more time….
Haters gonna… well, you know.
Personally I think one of the greatest justifications for Cucumber these days is Myron Marston’s amazing VCR scenarios on Relish. Talk about executable documentation.
Avdi, I was extremely happy you made it out. Your talk was fantastic. Thanks for finding the time to come to Bend, it wouldn’t have been the same without you.
It was great to meet you and the other G5 folks! Looking forward to next year.
Thanks for having me, I’m looking forward to next year!