Grapevine, Texas in August may not be the first place most people would choose to spend a week in August. It's pretty warm. On the positive side, the parks and public places are pretty quiet. I visited Dealey Plaza, the site of John F Kennedy’s assassination as well as a Trinity Audubon center south of Dallas and both were pleasantly uncrowded. For FileMaker Devcon 2018, Grapevine was a pretty great location! The Gaylord Texan hotel is huge. I easily walked 2 to 3 miles a day just getting around the conference center and hotel. Good Exercise :)
Many people who don’t attend the annual developers conference may not realize it, but it is not an entirely technical conference. While this year’s conference had a number of great technical sessions, I found myself gravitating towards the business management track.
I often use the conference as an opportunity to meditate on the state of our business. Various comments in different sessions triggered thoughts about aspects of our business and I took a lot of notes for later follow up. This year some of the sessions I attended on business management were on prospecting, recruiting, and case studies of FileMaker in action at a variety of business and organizations.
This isn’t to say I didn’t attend some excellent technical sessions as well. I particularly liked the sessions on Amazon Web Services other than EC2, the new data migration tool, and utilizing external sensors to gather data in FileMaker.
FileMaker has become a lot more open about sharing the session information from Devcon in recent years and now the session notes are available in the FileMaker developer community for all to review, even if you didn’t attend the conference. I’ve linked in this article to session notes for sessions I mentioned, and you can review the full list of session notes here. Videos of the sessions haven’t been uploaded yet, but should be soon.
Next year's conference will be in August in Orlando, Florida.