Christian Heilmann

7 Reasons why EdgeConf rocks and why you should be part of it

Monday, July 13th, 2015 at 2:53 pm

Having just been there and seeing that the coverage is available today, I wanted to use this post to tell you just how amazing EdgeConf is as a conference, a concept and a learning resource. So here are seven reasons why you should care about EdgeConf:

Reason 1: It is a fully recorded think-tank

Unlike other conferences, where you hear great presentations and have meetings and chats of high significance but have to wait for weeks for them to come out, EdgeConf is live in its coverage. Everything that’s been discussed has a live comment backchannel (this year it was powered by Slack), there are dedicated note-takers and the video recordings are transcribed and published within a few days. The talks are searchable that way and you don’t need to sift through hours of footage to find the nugget of information you came for.

Reason 2: It is all about questions and answers, not about the delivery and showing off

The format of EdgeConf is a Q&A session with experts, moderated by another expert. There are a few chosen experts on stage but everybody in the audience has the right to answer and be part of it. This happens in normal conference Q&A in any case; Edge makes sure it is natural instead of disrupting. There is no space for pathos and grandstanding in this event – it is all about facts.

Reason 3: The audience is a gold-mine of knowledge and experts to network with

Edge attracts the most dedicated people when it comes to newest technology and ideas on the web. Not blue-sky “I know what will be next” thinkers, but people who want to make the current state work and point towards what’s next. This can be intimidating – and it is to me – but for networking and having knowledgable people to bounce your ideas of, this is pure gold.

Reason 4: The conference is fully open about the money involved

Edge is a commercial conference, with a very affordable ticket price. At the end of the conference, you see a full disclosure of who paid for what and how much money got in. Whatever is left over, gets donated right there and then to a good cause. This year, the conference generated a massive amount of money for codeclub. This means that your sponsorship is obvious and people see how much you put in. This is better than getting a random label like “platinum” or “silver”. People see how much things cost, and get to appreciate it more.

Reason 5: The location is always an in-the-trenches building

Instead of being in a hotel or convention centre that looks swanky but has no working WiFi, the organisers partner with tech companies to use their offices. That way you get up-close to Google, Facebook, or whoever they manage to partner with and meet local developers on their own turf. This is refreshingly simple and means you get to meet folk that don’t get time off to go to conferences, but can drop by for a coffee.

Reason 6: If you can’t be there, you still can be part of this

All the panels of this conference are live streamed, so even if you can’t make it, you can sit in and watch the action. You can even take part on Slack or Twitter and have a dedicated screening in your office to watch it. This is a ridiculously expensive and hard to pull off trick that many conferences wouldn’t event want to do. I think we should thank the organisers for going that extra step.

Reason 7: The organisers

The team behind Edge is extremely dedicated and professional. I rushed my part this year, as I was in between other conferences, and I feel sorry and like a slacker in comparison what the organisers pulled off and how they herd presenters, moderators and audience. My hat is off to them, as they do not make any money with this event. If you get a chance to thank them, do so.

Just go already

When the next Edge is announced, don’t hesitate. Try to get your tickets or at least make sure you have time to watch the live feeds and take part in the conversations. As someone thinking of sponsoring events, this is a great one to get seen and there is no confusion as to where the money goes.

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