I'm a Floridian web engineer who planted his roots in Paris. Some of my favorite past-times are analyzing and optimizing development processes, building solid APIs, mentoring junior devs, and long walks on the beach.

Magic Ruby 2011 02-13-2011

The Talks

Nothing speaks to people like the word 'free'. It is a good reason to attend Barcamps. And while Magic Ruby is free, that is not the only reason I went (though it made it hard not to). I've been developing in Ruby for a little over a year and I'm still amazed at what a good community it has.

I enjoyed all of the talks, though the keynotes were definitely the highlights. Probably because they involved relatively little code detail, focusing on concepts and kept the momentum going. I think that one of the most difficult things to do is give a speech and have it involve a good deal of code but still not be too dry. Also, the talk length was around an hour each, which means that the speakers have to maintain the audience's attention that entire time. Not a small task.

Lightning Talks

For anyone who hasn't given a lightning talk it is somewhat of a shocking experience(har) if you have to prerecord them. For Magic Ruby, they had you record your slides prior to giving the talk using Jink , then during the talk the slides change without your prompting. So if you time things wrong, you can potentially end up with ten or twenty seconds to kill before you can move on to the next topic. I just used that time to complement my audience.

I ended up giving a lightning talk on a tool I've been using more and more over the past year, Pivotal Tracker.

Git Hooks + Pivotal Trackers

In my development environment I had been taking advantage of their API. It lets you do just about anything you can do from their site, only from the command-line. Seriously, if you're not using it, stop what you're doing and make an account. End of plug. Ok, so I had been using a script in my git hooks that pulls in the current stories that I'm working on and prepends them to my commit message so that it is easy to associate a commit with the ticket that you're working on. In my personal time, I've been working on a gem that uses this idea. I hope to have it finished in time for the Orlando Barcamp.