Being involved in organizing and putting on a regional Ruby conference means that you get to peek behind the curtain and see some pretty interesting things. One of the things that stands out to me so far is the distance people are willing to travel to come to our little conference. So far, we have attendees from California, Florida, Missouri, New York, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington.
Among the various attendees, are some pretty interesting names as well. Josh Susser’s name caught my eye. Since he’s both well known among the Ruby and Rails communities and coming in from outside the Mountain West, I asked him a few questions about regional Conferences and the MountainWest RubyConf. Here’s what he had to say.
Why are you planning on coming to MountainWest RubyConf this year?
I heard a lot of good things about MWRC last year and was sorry I missed it – especially the implementors summit. I want to check out a couple regional confs this year, and MWRC looks like one of the better ones.
Which of the talks are you most looking forward to?
The Ruby Internals, DataMapper and CouchDB talks.
What will make this conference worth your time and money?
I am not a werewolf. No really… learning something new, making connections, and of course the sexy t-shirts.
What value to you see regional Ruby conferences providing?
There’s only so much room in the program at RubyConf and even RailsConf, so the regionals give other venues to present stuff. Also, spreading things out over the calendar means that you get to see new things throughout the year. Beyond that, they are valuable local residents to define and energize their regional Ruby communities.
What do you see as the main differences between an regional Ruby conference and RubyConf?
The big conferences have a lot to choose from, but sometimes that’s a drawback. I like a nice, intimate, single-track conference so I don’t feel like I’m missing anything. Also, I get to talk to more people. Yes, that’s how it works – less is more.