WebDu Day One of Two

Live blogging from WebDU is Sydney is running pretty much as well as my "Vlog Every Day in April"! My (pitiful) defense is two fold: firstly, the internet connectivity is woeful. Secondly, I’m _paying lots of attention_ to the speakers. I doubt I could do them any justice as their live blogger anyway because I’m only hanging on to my understanding by the skin of my teeth most of the time anyway. Which is great cos who the heck wants to hear people say stuff you already know?

WebDU is pretty much the real deal. Decent numbers of people, massive name tags, goodie bags and urn coffee. Just like a bought one.

The morning started with a painless registration. My timing was perfect - straight off registration and into the first item on the agenda: the keynote. No mucking about, and more to the point: no mingling (which is actually a name for “standing around awkwardly not saying anything to anyone*”

The keynote was a series of speakers, starting out with Geoff (chief organiser) then followed by Mike Childs, that american flash guy, Andrew Spaulding, that Coldfusion dude**.

At time, I bagged (literally threw my coat and bag) on a chair and nabbed some morning tea*. I was hoping for “muffins” and when I saw “brownies” i was so disappointed, until I spotted the (larger than, but not by much) shot glasses topped with berries. As you all know, custard-based foods trump almost every else* so I brought my sustenance back to my nabbed seat, to check my email. Something I hadn’t done since leaving Melbourne the afternoon before. Just as well the custard stuff was delicious because the internets were a no-go even though my Airport was telling me I had full connection etc. It lies: my Airport.

A young woman sat in the chair next to me. I looked at her name tag***** to see she was from Swinburne University in Melbourne. I said “guess what?” and held up my tag “The University of Melbourne” She had won her WebDU tickets by winning one of the Twitter passes I’d tried****** to win a ticket this way and it is interesting (for a couple of minutes though) to me that of the several hundred attendees, I should meet up with the first Twitter winner and she be from Melbourne.

I had already decided, with the exception of one user-experience session on Day Two, I was going to be spending my entire time in the Flash/Flex stream.

You can read more about Day One's Keynote and sessions on Pixelkin.com.

*that’s not strictly true, mingling is like fishing - I toss out one liners and see who bites. My one liners are terrible. I hate fishing.

**seriously, is Coldfusion gay? The Centaur kinda gives it away, it should just get the hell out of the closet.

***Look, what’s the use of queuing on one side of the table for food when you can totally go around the back of the table - that’s hardly queue jumping. c’mon!

****exceptions: jelly, watermelon, roast lamb, milky bar chocolate, sardines.

*****I understand why size matters - easy to read a name and where you’re from etc but hells teeth, I can’t do anything for the swinging tag between me and anything else. I’d love to be able to tag it to my clothes or something. Note to Self: next conference, bring clipping-to-clothes stuff. (In a related note, Fox was telling me that at SXSW she had troubles with the large name tag, so instead of wearing it around her neck, she threaded it through her belt loops but was told officially to wear the lanyard around her neck or she wouldn't be allowed into the venue.)

****** and failed.

My only real gripe about WebDU is the same gripe I have at all these sorts of things - the coffee is always foul. I don't understand why someone doesn't enlist a barrista and his gear to these things - sell good coffee - I'm not even asking for it to be free - just not that gut rotting urn stewed rot that conference centres always serve.

One of the great things about coming to a web development conference is that there are never queues for the women’s toilets.

Things I saw in Sydney today:
a frigate
a submarine