A month of conferencing - food for thoughts, thoughts on conferences
Since this year, June is no longer just a month for me, but "THE conference month".
The last few weeks have been filled to the brim with inspiration, learning, exchange, new contacts, experiences and lots of interaction...in real, live and in colour with real people - totally awesome and super exhausting at the same time. No wonder, after more than 2 years of online conferences. There were moments I had kind of a "people overload". But I can live with this luxury problem quite well.
The conference month started for me with the DevOps Days Zurich. This was my first time attending this 2-day single-track community event on DevOps and related topics such as quality assurance, security, tooling, agility and many more; and I will definitely be back next year. The mix of topics and disciplines impressed me and I felt welcome from the very first moment. The fact that the organisers are deeply committed and put their hearts into their work was palpable at all times. The speakers also sparkled with enthusiasm for DevOps and their contributions were prepared and presented in a highly professional manner. My greatest respect goes to the Ignite Talkers. They took on the challenge of delivering a message in exactly 5 minutes and on exactly 20 slides. The slides change automatically every 15 seconds. What a challenge and what an experience for the audience! If you missed it, you can watch the videos here: https://vimeo.com/devopsdayszh My absolute favourite is Benjamin Wyss, Master of Memes: https://vimeo.com/721173116
A week later, I went to Copenhagen, Denmark. First for sightseeing and then for the EuroSTAR conference. EuroSTAR is the oldest and largest conference on testing in Europe with the broadest coverage of topics. The conference spans 4 days with more than 70 sessions, including tutorials, workshops and presentations. EuroSTAR takes place in a different European city each year and fosters connections between QA & Testing specialists across Europe. From the very first moment, I felt part of the EuroSTAR family. Whether organisers, speakers, participants, sponsors or partners, everyone shares a passion for quality assurance and testing. The international flair and openness of everyone is contagious, inspiring and motivating. Never before have I met so many great, nice, interesting people in such a short time at an event of this size. A big compliment to the organisers that they managed to keep the familiar atmosphere and the personal spirit despite the large audience (around 1,200 people). It was precisely this special spirit that accompanied me through my presentation on the third day of the conference.
On 9 June 2022, I had the great honour to share my experiences with the EuroSTAR community. As incredibly excited and nervous as I was beforehand, I had so much fun during my talk. What a fantastic experience to speak at such a great event in front of such a wonderful audience. An unforgettable experience. EuroSTAR will definitely see me again! 2023 in Antwerp, Belgium under the motto "Software Development is a Social Activity": https://conference.eurostarsoftwaretesting.com/tickets/
Back in Switzerland, the Swiss Testing Day & DevOps Fusion was just around the corner. A welcome opportunity to get in touch with old and new acquaintances as well as customers, to feel the state of affairs and the general mood on site.
After an extremely hot conference summer day, however, I was very glad that the last event on my list for this month took place online.
The TestBash World, a 24-hour online convention by Ministry of Testing with a wide variety of contributions on the subject of testing and quality assurance. Ministry of Testing have once again managed to create a strong sense of community online. It feels as if you are sitting in the same room as the respective hosts and speakers, on a sofa or in their kitchen - the best parties always take place in the kitchen anyway. The atmosphere was relaxed, fun and at the same time interesting and inspiring. The more than fair ticket prices were completely reset to 0 a few weeks before the event. As I had already bought a ticket months ago at the regular price, I was proactively offered a full refund or the transfer of the ticket price to another event or training at Ministry of Testing. What more can one say? This is true community spirit and fairness - just great! I decided to donate the amount to Ministry of Testing.
There definitely needs to be more organisations of this kind, more real community events.
This was a reason for me and my friends, Ilari and Pascal, to found GreaTest Quality. GreaTest Quality is a non-profit association whose purpose is to organise events in the field of software testing and quality assurance. Non-profit also means that we can use all funds to make upcoming events even better than the previous ones.
So if you want to experience something new in the conference month of June 2023, come along to the first GreaTest Quality Convention - 2 June 2023 in the heart of Zurich. We are looking forward to seeing you! https://www.greatestquality.ch/tickets