Thanks to Nick for catching me doing what I do best… checking e-mail.
A big thanks to the organizers and other sponsors of BarcampDC3. It was a great experience for everyone, and it’s hard to believe that this is the the third one, organized by essentially the same group of people.
Startup Metrics for Pirates – Jared dug in depth one of the most important concepts of the “Startup Metrics for Pirates” methodology organized by Dave McClure – converting and retaining users. One especially helpful tool to come up was Google Insights for Search, that I will immediately start using.
HTML/CSS Tips + Tricks – Russell led the most useful session on HTML/CSS tips + tricks – little bits and pieces of advice to really perfect your technique. First thing Monday AM, I was already using some of his lessons, posted online here.
Android Development – THE GREATEST TALK EVER GIVEN BY ANYONE EVER. Gyuri and I led a developer-focused session on beginning Android development. Gyuri gave a basic step by step tutorial on building an Android application, while I dug into the code for MeetroDC, an application for checking DC Metro times (Bonus Round: I open sourced the code)
Twilio Development – Two developers from the DNC gave an overview of how they used Twilio to rapidly spin out telephony-powered applications during election time. This evolved into an open discussion on possible future applications that can be built, given how easy it is now with these APIs available to developers.
Freelancing – Josh and I finished up the day by leading a session on freelancing, both moonlighting and full time. We had a great dialogue amongst experienced freelancers, newbies, and those just interested in learning more. The conversation started out dominated by legalese and fear of being “caught” – but we then focused on some of the true important topics – billing, project management, and communications. I’m thankful for everyone who came out, and especially to those who attended just to put in their 0.02. We could tell by the questions being asked and the wide eyes that this was inspirational and helpful for all involved (it certainly was for me).
As the first BarcampDC was my first foray into any kind of professional community outside my then-employer, it’s a great experience to come back each year, see how the DC community has grown, and see how I’ve progressed in my own journey. If you had told me two years ago, that I would be completely out of the government contracting world, running my own thriving business, working on multiple products, and a regular contributor to these events… I would have laughed and kept walking.