There and back again... The Mono Summit 2007, and so much more

on Tuesday, December 11, 2007
I had written this huge post about how awesome the Mono Summit in Madrid was, how great it was to meet everyone (some again, some for the first time face-to-face), how much I learned from talking and sharing ideas and watching the presentations... and then @#$@$% synergy went and turned on control again and when I scrolled, the entire page was gone!

gnnngnnnngnn

Of course, the autosave function didn't work either, so I was left with the title and the first line.... *sigh* and I had pretty pictures in too *sigh*

So, this is going to be much shorter.

Mono Summit 2007: awesome

Highlights:

* Talking and debugging speedy-gonzalez-like with my favourite marsupial Geoff Norton about all things mac-ish;

* Discussing winforms and it's direction with Jonathan Pobst, as well as blowing up his Visual Studio 2008 with a carefully aimed HAHA;

* Meeting our awesome tester Gert Driesen, recipient of our lifetime achievement award for extreme uberness in testing everything with extreme prejudice (award which will, for sure, take physical form and reach him... :) );

* Meeting our wtf-is-wrong-with-transparency-dude/winforms designer Ivan Zlatev and making him come to dinner with us (hey, it was fun, wasn't it! ;) )

* Meeting my COM hero Jonathan Chambers!

* Watching with delighted surprise as Jim Purbrick (of Second Life fame) presented the pathfinding / tower of defense game we had been working on at Codebits Lisbon actually live in Second Life

* Watching the moonlighters work their magic;

* Watching Aaron Bockover turn his T into a portable disco by sending commands to the thinkpad acpi

* Finally meeting my good friend/asp.net master Marek Habersack

* Getting back together with all my teamsters

These are only the highlights, mind you, there was so much more, between the Boo, Debugging, MD, Mac and all the other presentations, meeting contributors and users and developers and getting together to discuss and debug and hack and having a few laughs over drinks and jamón and coffee and walking around Madrid trying to steer through the huge crowds and having our room keys deactivated every couple of days so that everyone had to meet downstairs and chat a bit more while they were reactivated (nice touch there, hotel service)... Did I mention how awesome it was?

So that was the Mono Summit 2007 in Madrid. Now that I'm back and filled with all the energy I got from this amazing event, I decided to make some changes to the way I work, because I realized that I was still carrying around some old habits from the closed-source/enterprise world that are keeping me back. Old habits are really hard to break, so this past week I've done two radical changes that will, hopefully, be the trigger to improving my whole way of working.

The first change was dumping Windows completely, and with it, Visual Studio. The past thursday marked my first Windows-free week in 10 years of work. I'm now running full time on openSuse, and it's great :)

The second change was switching to a US International layout on the keyboard. I just reached the conclusion that the PT layout is not suited to coding at all, most of the keys I hit the most are hidden away with ctrl+alt combos, while in the US layout they are readily available on the sides. Also, the accentuation marks I need when typing portuguese are very easily reachable on a US layout, funnily enough, so I can still type correctly in pt without having to switch layouts. And my fingers and wrists are oh so thankful for the change, I hadn't realized what a strain it was to code until the strain was gone :D

So that's that, went there and back again, and it was inspiring in so many ways. Can't wait for next year ;)

PS: oh yes, almost forgot, you can check out the pics I took if you're in the mood. There are also links to more albums from other monoers in the Mono project site.

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