Rocking LambdaConf

Dan Hopkins - April 22, 2014

Despite an agonizingly early start time, the first-ever LambdaConf was a big hit. Lots of functional programming mixed with heady conversations and very nerdy content resulted in a successful model for this event. It also goes to show that Boulder is an awesome place to host a conference and attract high-caliber speakers.


The attendees were a good mix of newbies and ninja dudes but it was especially cool to see enterprise guys who are just getting into Scala and excited to learn. There are not many places that you can go and learn this stuff, so it felt like there was a healthy exchange of information going on all day. Some of the day’s highlights, for me anyway:

  • Paul Phillip’s keynote - a talk from the guy who basically wrote Scala. His delivery was funny and he had meaningful ideas that made me think….exactly what you want from a keynote.
  • Derek Chen-Becker from Simple Energy - his talk was about pattern-matching. Although the talk was designed to be a beginner course, it was fun to learn new stuff and I found that I benefitted greatly from it.
  • John Pretty - he presented during the lightning talks that took place on Friday after the welcome reception. He spoke about doing abstract algebra, such as differentiation, on types in Scala…which is something you don’t even think about doing. His talk was very funny and the content outstanding. And of course, I made my public speaking debut at this conference as well. My presentation was the last one of the day and I started out by telling everyone to put away their computers. I think they liked hearing that after all they had been through. photo: David Hassler All the unknowns went well. My computer worked, my slides loaded and I wasn’t hoarse. On top of that, the audience was engaged throughout my talk and there were lots of questions at the end. I could not have asked for a better first time on stage. (My slides are below, if you’re interested.)

A big thank-you and shout-out to LambdaConf organizer, John DeGoes. He did a great job putting together an educational conference and providing good food for all to enjoy during the day. I appreciate him giving me an opportunity to present and can’t wait to see you at next year’s event!