Raleigh Code Camp Recap

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend Raleigh Code Camp, in Raleigh, NC.  This was my second time attending Raleigh, and I have to say that I’m still impressed with the quality of speakers and attendee’s.  One of my favorite quotes during Saturday was that the difference between a speaker and an attendee is two weeks.  This event didn’t have an open spaces section, so I was able to sit in on several presentations.

Speakers Dinner

Depending on who you talk to, speakers dinners are great or not.  Some people think it’s a great way for speakers, volunteers, and coordinators to get together and say “thanks” for taking time out of their busy schedules to come down and make the event possible.  Others will say that speaker dinners are “elitist”, and that the attendee’s should be invited to come participate.  I’m not really on one side or the other.  I enjoy speaker dinners.  Generally, speakers are really good friends of mine, and this is a great chance for us to catch up.  Dinner was hosted at “Ben’s Place” in Raleigh.  Food was delicious, but the portions were a bit small.  I was able to meet several speakers I haven’t been able to meet before.  Afterwards, several of us went to see “Extract” at the local movie theatre.  Short review, good movie, but not as good as Office Space.

jQuery From The Ground Up

Technically, jQuery From The Ground Up is my second presentation ever.  I was a little nervous with this presentation.  With my last talk, I grew comfortable with my demo material.  While jQuery isn’t new material to me, my demo was.  I got a lot of positive feedback from the talk.  One person even thanked me for making a mistake in my code.  It’s amazing to me now, but there is this mindset that speakers have to be “perfect’, and our demos have to be perfect.  I’m sorry, but I don’t think a presentation is “good” unless it has at least one hiccup.

I love giving presentations for the first time, because at the end, I always have a checklist of things I’d like to add, change, and remove from my talk.  Now I have a great idea of what works and what doesn’t.  I’m giving this talk again at Richmond Code Camp on October 3rd.


I went to Nate Kohari’s talk on bootstrapping your own business.  It’s always been something I’ve been interested in, and I really don’t have a good reason for not having done it.  My primary reason is that I have my wife and myself to support.  It’s difficult to say, “honey, I’m quitting my job so I can build my own product that might or might not work.”  I don’t think that would go over too well.

Nate did a great job discussing the pros and cons, and what to keep in mind if you decided to take on a startup head on.  I have several ideas bottled up in my head, and I think over the next few months that I might spend time developing one of those ideas into a product.  Time will tell!

Database Design for Developers

Andy Leonard has always been one of my favorite people to listen to speak.  This presentation discussed tips and tricks for developers working with databases.  I learned quiet a bit.  One of my favorite moments was when Andy discussed using integer keys over other types.  Reason to use integers is because SQL Server optimizes for integers.  In my current project, I ended up added unique integer keys to some of my tables even though I had another non-integer column that could’ve been an unique key.  I didn’t realize it was a performance decision.  Oops!

MVC Repository Pattern

Steve Bodnar is a good friend of mine in the Hampton Roads area.  This was his first non-FoxPro talk.  He spent the time talking about ASP.NET MVC Repository pattern.  Wow!  What a confusing topic.  Domain driven design in general is very difficult to comprehend (at least for me).  Steve did a great job of walking through his issues in trying to learn more about the pattern, and hopefully anyone looking at the pattern for the first time will be able to make strides without too much headache.  Steve’s also doing two more brand new MVC talks at Richmond Code Camp.


Raleigh Code Camp never disappoints.  The guys down there did a wonderful job, and I will make sure that I return year after year.  I was able to meet a lot of new people, and meet a few people face-to-face for the first time.  Next year, make sure to put Raleigh on your calendar!

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