WebDD07 in review

I went to WebDD Conference 07 at the Microsoft Campus in Reading today. This post records my overall impressions, and is also my first attempt at an , which is something I've been meaning to try out for a while. I'm going to do a review of each talk I went to in separate posts (or, I should say, I plan to...).

It was something of a shock to the system when my alarm went off at 7am on a Saturday morning, but I did drag myself out of bed and down to Paddington only a little after I'd hoped to get there. I arrived at Thames Valley Park in plenty of time and was surprised to find breakfast waiting in the form of rolls with either bacon or sausage - usually at Microsoft when I've been it's been coffee and biscuits in the morning, maybe this is a Saturday perk?

There was a choice of three talks in each slot, and five slots through the day, here's the list of talks I attended:

  • Microformats HTML to API (Glen Jones)
  • Doing it in style: creating beautiful sites, the web standards way (Patrick Lauke)
  • Quick and dirty Usability tests - one week, no budget, and no usability facility (Zhivko Dimitrov)
  • Ruby On Rails for .NET Developers (Dave Verwer)
  • Unobtrusive Javascript with Rails (Dave Verwer)

I'll save the details of the talks for later posts, but enough to say they were of a consistently high quality and were more than enough reason, by themselves, to drag me out of bed on a Saturday morning :)

There were plenty of other highlights - the food continued with pastries and Innocent smoothies at mid-morning, passable packed lunches and warm cookies in the afternoon. There was a guy from Computer Manuals selling books all morning, not the full range but at good discount. Microsoft were pimping their Expression range of web design tools, which included giving each attendee a free copy of Expression Web, and there were samples and free stuff available from most of the other sponsors.

The only disappointing thing was that it all ground to a halt shortly after 4pm, I'd originally planned for it finishing at 5pm and I think I would have preferred the spare hour in bed in the morning rather than at Reading Station in the afternoon. Overall though, an excellent event, 5 out of 5, I would recommend it to anyone with an interest in web design or development.

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