Stir Trek: Thor Edition (the Aftermath)

I spent the weekend at Stir Trek: Thor Edition in Columbus, OH. While I had a blast speaking about databases, I had even more fun attending and learning.

Programming the Cloud with HTTP/REST

I knew about REST before I attended this talk and I’ve done a bit of REST programming (right before I decided to nerd out on data), but Mike Amundsen did a great job of convincing me why I should care about REST as a programming paradigm for web developers. I’m not going to go out and start writing code to build my own REST services, but I have a better grasp of how I can work with developers to build robust data driven services and applications and do some incredibly cool things in the process.

CSS 3: Something for Everyone

John Keyes delivered a presentation about the basics of CSS 3. I knew there were some great features of CSS 3, but I also knew that the spec is incredibly broad. I was a bit worried that John’s presentation was going to be a whirlwind tour with very little depth. Instead of a shallow romp through CSS 3, John delivered a solid presentation that worked through some core features of CSS 3 in a practical manner and built up on them to demonstrate new techniques with real world value. Except for maybe the demo that made a rectangle swirl into a circle, that was just cool. John gets mad props for filling his slide deck with Jurassic Park references. I had some laughs while I got my learn on, and that’s a good thing. I’ve worked with John on presentations in the past and he’s become a phenomenal presenter, programmer, and web developer in the time that I’ve known him.

Real World jQuery

Matt Nowack had the difficult job of speaking right after lunch. He gave a great talk about jQuery 1.5 and 1.6. It turns out that Matt wrote the talk for jQuery 1.5 and did a great job of introducing some of the newest features of my favorite JavaScript library. jQuery 1.6 came out recently and it made parts of Matt’s talk irrelevant. Matt took it in stride and wrote new content earlier in the week and delivered a top notch presentation that was educational and entertaining. I overheard one attendee say that they were rushing off to Matt’s presentation because it was bound to be good. They were right and I was also right to pay them 15 bucks and a box of Milk Duds to yell it at the top of their lungs. Good job, Matt.

The Rest of My Time

I spent the rest of my time preparing and giving my talk The Database is Dead, Long Live the Database. If you attended, the resources page will always be online at If you missed it and you wanted to see it, you’ll be able to catch it on June 28th at 8:00 PM Eastern through the PASS Application Development Virtual Chapter. I was incredibly flattered when Matt Casto asked me to speak at this event, way back at Code Mash. I’m glad that he was clearly drunk and thought I would make a great speaker. You can’t imagine how happy I am that he accepted the bribes I sent his way, just in case he sobered up and didn’t remember asking me to speak. Luckily, most of that’s a lie. I did, however, have an awesome time in Columbus hanging out with old friends, hopefully making a few new ones, and only telling one STD joke during my presentation; nice try, guy in row three! In summation: thanks Matt, thanks Stir Trek, and thanks Columbus!