Scenic City Summit 2016

I’ve found myself doing a bit of the local conference circuit lately. I recently attended the first ever Scenic City Summit in Chattanooga, TN. The conference was a single day event hosted at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga campus.

The morning keynote was by Cory House about the technology adoption curve. This was basically the same talk that he gave at CodeStock last month (at the request of the event organizers). You can read more about it in my CodeStock 2016 Review.

Reid Evans spoke about functional programming. It was interesting to see how you could use one data type (Either) and two functions (map and bind) to implement a functional pattern of programming even in object-oriented languages. Functional programming is something I am very new to, but it is very interesting to see new patterns for solving problems.

Cory House did a talk called “12 Keys to Scalable JavaScript” which was a checklist of best practices for JavaScript development based on his experiences. Some of the points were pretty well known practices, but he pointed out a lot of useful tools (linting, transpiling, etc) to make working in JavaScript better.

Jessica Ivins talked about user experience design considerations when developing software. Products should be useful, usable, and desirable.
We should be asking our customers what they need and what they struggle with, not what they want. Jessica is a faculty member at the new Center Centre user experience design school that is opening in Chattanooga this fall.

Jessica Kerr gave a really fun closing keynote about her experiences as a developer, and a quick lesson on Pokemon Go. She talked about how modern software projects today are large, complex, and usually involve a variety of different technologies. One person can’t know everything, but as a team you can have all the knowledge needed to be successful.

I don't want rockstars on my team. I want my team to be rocking it. - Jessica Kerr

You can get the slides for her presentation here.

For a first year conference the organizers did a really great job, and there were some great presenters. I look forward to seeing what’s to come next year.