PubConf lineup
Pete Smith
Pete Smith Associate

What's New Tue 24th January, 2017

A bloke down the pub said…

Equal Experts recently sponsored the latest edition of PubConf – “The Software Conference Variety Show and Afterparty” – organised by the awesome Todd Gardner. You can get a flavour of the night by looking at the event page on PubConf’s site.

While we don’t usually need much of an excuse to get the beers in, this was an opportunity too good to miss. You see, as concepts go, PubConf is a simple one, but a belter. It’s a conference… in a pub. Now if that’s not a winning formula, I don’t know what is. Talks use the ignite format, of 5 minute talks where slides auto advance every 15 seconds.

As its variety show tagline hints, you’re never quite sure what you’re going to see – but you can bet it’ll always be an entertaining, irreverent night. There’s even a section where members of the audience can participate in an improv ‘ignite battle’ using slides they’ve never seen before, with prizes for the winner.

The first rule of PubConf is…

Pubconf has two simple rules. Firstly, be a decent human being, and secondly, “what happens at pubconf, stays at pubconf“. To create such an open, bold event, the organisers ask that people don’t share photos or presentations on social media, the idea being that presenters will then feel more relaxed and able to “speak their minds” shall we say. It’s got more in common with stand up comedy than your traditional tech talk.

This arrangement is great because it leads to much funnier (and very insightful) talks – but it does make it a bit harder for your humble correspondent to properly cover the event in a blog. However, if you look closely enough you’ll see that I was among the presenters (or should I say performers?) which means I can reveal a little something of my own talk, ‘What Having a Software Project Has Taught Me About Babies’:

“Labour is the perfect analogy for a software project… How long is it going to take? Who knows!? When is it going to start? No idea… “

“Labour is the perfect analogy for a software project… How long is it going to take? Who knows!? When is it going to start? No idea…”

This was my 2nd time speaking at PubConf – it was an honour to join such erudite and amusing company (did they get the right Pete Smith?). I did want to take this opportunity to say that it’s a fantastic fresh take on software meetups and a really great night out for all involved. While all the talks were great, I particularly enjoyed Damian Brady for his take on how not to contribute to an open source project, Dan North for actually trying to teach people things, and Evelina Gabasova with her Monty Python inspired mascot.

All in all then, I can heartily recommend attending your local PubConf – thanks to the organisers for having me and I’m already looking forward to the next one!