A really fantastic opportunity arose where me and another student at Plymouth University, Daniel Groves, were able to go to the agile on the beach conference. I was willing to go and see what I could gain from the experience.
“Agile software development is a group of software development methods based on iterative and incremental development, where requirements and solutions evolve through collaboration between self-organizing, cross-functional teams. It promotes adaptive planning, evolutionary development and delivery, a time-boxed iterative approach, and encourages rapid and flexible response to change. It is a conceptual framework that promotes foreseen interactions throughout the development cycle. The Agile Manifesto introduced the term in 2001.”
With this in mind, I was unsure on how it could benefit me and also help me with my final year project that is set to begin September 2013. I did some very basic research due to not knowing anything about the conference I was about to attend and found I was still slightly confused. What I needed was to go and see it for my self. My way of learning is to listen and watch others.
When we arrived there I was quite nervous, but the keynote speaker Dan North was great, it got me really interested and he explained his presentation in a way that made sense. From this point the day went on quite well, mainly going down the craftsman tree of presentations because they were more relevant to what I am learning. By the end of the day I will admit my brain was in overdrive and I think may have crashed but luckily we had the beach party which was fantastic and a nice way to get to know people and chill out after the day.
The second day of the conference was much the same as the first in the fact that I enjoyed it very much. The thing that stood out the most for me was the testing and the level of high quality testing that the speakers were promoting. Now I have never tested that thoroughly before, but after seeing it and learning about it I am most definitely going to be doing this for my final year project at university. The talks that made the biggest impact on me on day two had to be Seb Rose – bad test, good test & Jon Jagger – Cyber Dojo which was great fun, I had not used Java in over a year and if I’m honest I wasn’t great at it, but it was great to actually do some practical work to show the effects of what we where learning and after that I was thoroughly impressed with the whole conference.
To conclude, I had a fantastic few days, I slept fantastically when I got home because I found it pretty intense. Also the people were really nice there and I had the chance to talk to people who were in the same industry as myself which is always good, and the discussions were really helpful. I have taken a lot away from the experience.