Tuesday, 28 April 2015

NorDevCon 2015 - Survey Results and Winners!

As NorDevCon continues to grow and attract higher numbers of attendees, we began to consider running the conference over two days. To find out if this was something the tech community would be interested in, we conducted a survey of NorDevCon 2015 visitors.

We were very pleased to see that two thirds of the 93 respondents would like to see NorDevCon happen over two days.


The majority of those surveyed would prefer Thursday and Friday to any other combination of days, with Friday and Saturday morning coming in second, head and shoulders above the other options.


Based on this feedback and the direction we would like to take the conference, we have decided to run a number of parallel, hands-on workshops on the Thursday and the regular conference on Friday, with a keynote followed by five streams on the Saturday morning.

We are very pleased to announce that Michael Feathers is joining us from the US to give the opening keynote on Friday, as well as running a workshop.

Russel Winder, who spoke at the inaugural Nor(DEV):, will be giving the closing keynote for 2016 and the conference will finish lunchtime on Saturday.

On Saturday Richard Astbury will present the day’s keynote, which will be followed by five tracks, four of which will be lecture style presentations of 45 or 90 minutes. The fifth track will run at the same time and will comprise a 90 minute hands-on workshop.

Workshop tickets will be sold separately and individually for each workshop. We will offer tickets for Friday and Saturday morning as well as day tickets for those who only want to attend Friday or Saturday. The pre-conference special, the pre-conference dinner and the conference dinner will all be the same as before.

Those who completed our survey also went into a draw to win tickets to NorDevCon 2016 and our five winners are:

  • Luke Kittridge
  • Paul Cutting
  • Matthew Dunn
  • Tracey Tutt
  • Roberto Bezzi

We look forward to seeing everyone next year!

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Nor(DEV): Docker Beginners Hands on Full Day Workshop

What: Nor(DEV): Docker Beginners Hands on Full Day Workshop

Where: The King's Centre, King Street, Norwich NR1 1PH

When: Wednesday 27th May @ 9.45am - 4.30pm

RSVP: http://www.meetup.com/Norfolk-Developers-NorDev/events/221748446/

Price: £30 per person
Level: Beginners
Prerequisites: Laptop with SSH client
Location: Conference Room 1 (1st floor)

In this hands on workshop we’ll be looking at the basics of using Docker to deploy services in immutable servers.

Starting from the absolute basics of installing and running docker we’ll then look at running pre-packaged images before moving onto creating our own. We’ll then use these images to see how Docker can be used to simplify testing and deployment of code.

During the session we’ll be working with the linux command line, so a familiarity with that will be beneficial. The practical sessions will be run from the cloud, so a laptop with an SSH client will be needed.

Dom Davis

Dom Davis is a veteran of The City and a casualty of The Financial Crisis. Not content with bringing the world to its knees he then went off to help break the internet before winding up in Norfolk where he is now a technology evangelist for a small startup.
Dom is an enthusiastic and impassioned speaker [read: he gabbles] who uses a blend of irreverent sarcasm and flippant humour to bring complex technical subjects to a broad audience. Whether or not they understand him is up for debate, but he likes to believe they do.

Nor(DEV): Unlocking Your IT Data & Building on the EPoS Now Platform

When: Wednesday, May 6th 2015, 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm 

Where: The King's Centre, King Street, Norwich, NR1 1PH 

RSVP: http://www.meetup.com/Norfolk-Developers-NorDev/events/221751186/ 

There are Priorities, Priorities, and then there are PRIORITIES. 

Today IT is generally seen as a critical if not essential part of our daily live’s, the data that it generates is readily accepted to be of essential importance. From mundane user generated data such as word documents (but only mundane as its content), to critical infrastructure regulating electricity supplies (but only critical if service affecting). One of the challenges we face is how do we understand what data is of critical importance and what is not. In addition another layer of added complexity is that one departments criticality is anothers nuisance, so how do we advise and decide as IT professionals what an organization really needs? Firstly in order to make an ‘informed’ decision we need to be….. Informed. 

We at Sumo Logic will enable you to create a platform which enables you to collect the right information in the right context, at the right time. 

Clive McDonald 

I would describe myself firstly as an IT Data evangelist, I think it is quite apt with regards to where I am in my career. In previous positions I have built and managed global teams,designed & implemented various technical enterprise wide solutions,and won multi-million pound contracts within both start-up companies and global enterprises. This work was done under various guises such as a EMEA Manager or a senior security professional/architect, predominantly dealing with FTSE 50 companies across a wide range of verticals. The reason I have chosen such a generic description for myself is simply because IT data and its use within the world has gone through a seachange, the use of ‘Big Data’ has blurred the previous delineations that existed between security, operations and auditing as an example. 

Building on the EPoS Now Platform 

April 2015 celebrates 3 years of software development at local tech company EPoS Now. The business has had great success from introducing Software as a Service and some great developer tools.They are soon to extend this by offering Platform as a Service, which will allow developers to build, host and resell their creations. 
In this talk Wayne will demonstrate how to build and host a simple JavaScript app using real-time data from multiple API's. As well as exploring the approach and scalable technology used to build the platform. 

Wayne Taylor 

Wayne works as Head of Software at EPoS Now where he has helped to create the successful SME from a fledgling start-up. Day to day means managing, coaching, problem solving, architecting, designing, watering the plants, keeping an ear to the ground and an eye on competitors... and every once in a while he still gets to write some code. He is very proud of the department he has built and is often amazed by the fantastic people he gets to work with.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Two birds, one stone: The future of mobile at New Patrick's Yard.

On Wednesday 1st of April (no, I’m not fooling) Norfolk Developers held a special event in the new “Technical Offices for Technical People”, at New Patrick’s Yard on the corner of Prince of Wales Road and Recorder Road in Norwich. New Patrick’s Yard is the location of the new Norwich based offices for Liquid 11, the very successful technology company created and run by Grant Hardy. They also have plenty of spare space, which they want to rent out to other tech businesses.

I first met Grant at SyncNorwich’s Agile August and we’ve kept in touch and bumped into each other at various events since; so when Sally Harding, Liquid 11’s Business Development Manager, asked me if I would help to promote New Patrick’s Yard, I thought what better way than to run a Norfolk Developers’ event there?

Some of you will remember that we had to do a last minute room swap between Seb Rose and Neil Garner at NorDevCon in February. It was so last minute that Neil had actually started speaking and sadly it also meant that we didn’t capture the video. So I thought that a special, last minute event at New Patrick’s Yard would be fitting and give us a chance to record Neil’s conference presentation again. Fortunately, Neil was very keen to do it too!

About 25 people, including some new faces and some members of Liquid 11’s team, descended on New Patrick’s Yard to consume the plentiful beer, wine and pizza which was very kindly laid on by Liquid 11. Twentyfive was the perfect number for the double office we were using for the presentation. New Patrick’s Yard had even created special Wifi just for NorDev.

We kicked off at 7pm and Grant gave a brief overview of the offices and their facilities before inviting everyone to look round after the presentation. Then we dived straight into Neil’s enhanced presentation from NorDevCon, Mobile Commerce: Past, Present, THE future.

I originally met Neil just before he opened MobDevCon for me in 2013 and I’ve seen him speak a few times since. His friendly, charismatic style lends itself brilliantly to these sorts of high level, business focussed technical presentations and it was clear that everyone was engaged with the material from beginning to end.

Neil told us about wearables and questioned how popular the new smart watches would be, given that many people wear a styled watch as a fashion accessory or as a status symbol. He posed the question, what will Apple and Google do to keep up?

He explained how the mobile app would become a thing of the past and how the mobile experience would become fully integrated, rather than segregated into separate apps. He told us that mobile developers are already predominantly engaged in integration.

Neil told us that “There are 102 lego bricks for everyone on the planet” and that this is particularly interesting because most software engineers are no longer writing low level code to display some text, capture input from a keyboard or setup networking. Now, we’ve all become integration engineers building software on top of other software, just like putting lego building blocks together.

Mobile phones are being used more and more for purchasing and Neil explained how mobile phone coverage is better in East Africa and across Asia than it is in Europe and how just about everyone with a phone there can make and receive payments on their phones.

Neil finished off by telling us about Loka, a new app from Proxama which delivers offers from high street in real time based on your proximity to certain shops. This sparked a number of questions about the technology behind it and how consumers would react to the notifications.

Following Neil’s presentation, New Patrick’s Yard was still buzzing as people finished off the pizza and beer, explored the offices and chatted. Norfolk Developers had a fantastic time at the Technical Offices for Technical People and we’ve been invited back.

Don’t miss the Norfolk Developers lunch at All Bar One at 12.30pm on Wednesday 15th of April followed by our regular evening event. This month, it’s Tools of the Javascript Trade & Coachtrain: the challenges of innovating the inter-urban public transportation system, from 6.30pm at the Kings Centre. RSVP here: http://tinyurl.com/pcfxowa and follow us on Twitter, @NorfolkDev.