The London Perl Workshop 2014

LPWcommunity Sun 9 November 2014

I went to the London Perl Workshop today. Lots of good talks and also a chance to catch up with friends. Thanks to all the organisers and volunteers (and speakers!) who helped make it such a worthwhile day. This is my short report.

I really enjoyed YVES' talk on Sereal: background and motivation, with real problems faced by Booking, how they addressed them, challenges, and lessons learned. Realised several places where I should be using Sereal.

DIOCLES gave an interesting talk on feature toggles, and the Toggle module as one way to gradually introduce features on your web site. With graphs. Some good contributions from people in the audience with experience on doing this stuff at large scale. I came away with ideas for a number of things to try.

TOBYINK's talk was provocatively titled "Object-Oriented Programming: Why You're Doing It Wrong", which prompted plenty of people to squeeze into the room. Three practical tips.

STEVAN talked about Plack::Debugger, which he might release this weekend. He started with a funny history of debugging for web developers, then into Plack middleware and problems with Plack::Middleware::Debug. Plack::Debugger looks cool; another thing to play with. One of my favourite lines of the day: "I might release it later, if I'm not too drunk. Nah! Who cares if I'm too drunk — it's CPAN!".

MSTROUT's "The internet of personification" was a curious title, and in usual Matt style was entertaining and occasionally baffling. Good introduction to the uncanny valley, and ways to avoid it. At one point I was thinking "where's he going with this?", but then: oh, nice! Looking forward to his new CPAN client.

Steven Goodwin's talk "Home automation - not as simple as you think" can be summarised as: it's a right ball-ache to get home automation working anywhere near right. Masochists only need apply.

I don't really know how to summarise OSFAMERON's plenary, "Rewriting the Apocalypse". But in a good way.

As usual, an eclectic selection of lightning talks. My favourite was PJCJ's "I am developer". A good reception for DAVECROSS's news that he's working on a new book about modern web programming in Perl ("Web munging in Perl"?).

I finished my slides for "A review of exporter modules" not long before giving them, and it showed.

A strong presence from Booking.com. It really sounds like a great place to work: all sorts of interesting and hard problems, working with smart people. No, I'm not looking for a job, but if you are, I'm pretty sure they're hiring :-)

It was good to catch up with various friends (a nice surprise bumping into ISHIGAKI-san!), and I came away with a notebook full of things to play with, and ideas to try at work. That's why I go. A good day.

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