Philly Code Camp Wrap up

-   May 20, 2008 -   Personal -   ,

The second Philly Code Camp of the year was this past Saturday and it was a good one.  (I guess my experience tells me they are always "good ones", but it is worth stating that it was in fact good up front.)  Hats off to the Philly.NET crew.  They really do a fantastic job of putting a code camp together.  It was very well organized and really ran through without a hitch.

This was my first time speaking at a code camp and it was a very interesting experience.  While I thought I was ready to present when I arrived, my Macbook Pro, Vista, and the projector had other ideas.  Since I was first up, I was able to get into the room early and get setup.  If it were not for this extra time, my session would have been a disaster.  I wasted about 15 to 20 minutes trying to get the projector to work off my Boot Camp partition (booting directly into Vista) but it wasn't to be.  (And here I thought it would be my best bet.)  Anyway, I finally booted to the Mac OS, and run my presentation through Fusion.  It worked like a champ, but I had wasted the initial 10 minutes of the presentation.

It was a rough start and not exactly what I had planned, but after things settled down, all seemed to go well.  (Ok, I had no further technical difficulties and no one threw rotten vegetables at me.)  In reflection, there are lots of things I'd have changed, but it was all a great learning experience.  I'm sure I had too many uhs and umms, in the talk and I knew I rushed it a bit as I had planned a full agenda and was now working with a compressed time frame.  So it goes.

Beyond my session, I enjoyed a number of interesting sessions and had some nice conversations.  The sessions I attended were all very good and really showed the passion of the presenters.  These people made you want to dig further into the topic after you left the session which is the mark of success in my book.  I never seem to get to talk to all the people I had planned to, but I will admit that by the end of the day, I was exhausted and just ready to go home.  I think I'll make sure I'm better rested for next time.

If you came by looking for my code samples from the presentation.  I will make them available in the next day or so.  Sorry for the delay.

5 Comments

Scott R
Commented on 5/22/2008 9:07:24 PM
I was in your session and I think you did a fine job.  The subject matter probably didn't expand my knowledge too much as, despite being a .NET neophyte and being out of doing any .NET development for the last several months, the User provider was one of the few things I dug into many months back.  Nevertheless, it was a great session for me if for no other reason than it exposed me to BlogEngine.NET.  I have a client that wants a blog on her site and the site I developed for her a while back (using my own custom CMS) is based on PHP.  I wanted to improve my .NET experience, and BlogEngine.NET looks like a great opportunity for me to improve my comfort level.

One note on the session itself...it seemed like you (and I) were caught off guard by the fact that other sessions seemed to end about 15 minutes prior to the start of the next session.  It was a bit awkward having people coming into the room at quarter-of so that they could get a good seat for the next session when you were still teaching your session.

Do you have any recommendations for affordable .NET hosts?  Because I do web design on the side, I'd ideally like a host that offers me the ability to have multiple websites under a single plan.  For my current clients, I have a single "reseller" account which is affordable (about $35/month) and works well for PHP, but I'm looking for something similar for .NET.
Commented on 5/22/2008 11:04:34 PM
Thanks for the kind words, Scott.  I was finishing up as fast as I could but was thinking sessions would be set to end 10 mins before the next one.  I noticed as the day went on more people waiting outside the rooms until they were cleared out.

Regarding hosting, I use WebHost4Life.com.  I have multiple sites but they are all under my admin panel.  It works great but I do not need to give access to anyone else.  It is $10 a month and it has been fine for me to date.
Scott R
Commented on 5/22/2008 11:27:11 PM
Thanks for the tip.  Their claim of unlimited bandwidth raises the "too good to be true" red flag for me, but I'll definitely check them out.  How long have you used them and what's your experience been in terms of uptime?  Do they have any sort of community support forum?  I didn't see one open to the public, but perhaps there's one for members?
Commented on 5/23/2008 1:13:48 AM
The bandwidth thing is odd and I've heard that high bandwidth sites end up moving on, but I haven't had any had any issues.

Customers have a ticket support system which is decent.  Fairly quick turnaround, but I have rarely needed it.  You can do most anything with the detailed admin panels.  I don't think there is a forum for the service.

I've been with them for 2 years.  I've had some short downtime, but not for a while that I'm aware of.  Probably less than 2 hours in the past year.  It has been very stable overall and at the price, I can't complain.
Commented on 5/23/2008 2:08:48 AM
I can recommend DiscountASP.net. Very reliable, they get new code (even betas) online early, support has been top notch, and cost has been reasonable (in my estimation).

-gil
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