IBM Connect 2013: the first post

A taxi, a plane, a train, a walk, another train, and another walk. Left the Dolphin just after 5pm on Thursday, and walked through my front door in Blighty exactly fourteen hours later.

And what a trip! As long-time readers will know (!) I don’t do the Lotusphere thing very often. I went courtesy of my old employer in 2006 and then thanks to team Elguji got to go again in 2010 as the indy coder I am now. Despite this paucity in my attendance record, Lotusphere always feels welcoming, it just feels “right”—and every time I leave, like everyone else I get the post-conference blues.

I decided to attend Connect 13 on a whim towards the end of last year. I think it came about because I went out for beers with Matt and the Wookiee, and their excited LS chat convinced me.

In other words, it’s all their fault.

Geeks on a plane

Anyway, on to the conference. We flew out on the Friday before, in a surprisingly empty Virgin plane, which was just tickety-boo. The stewardesses were most amused by the ridiculous set-up witnessed in row 64: the Wookiee and I were in full geek flow, with Nexus 7s (I bought a new one on the way out—recommended!), laptops and various charging leads all over the shop.

Once landed, a car hired by Mr. White saw us all to the Dolphin for a swift check-in, and beers (of course). We opted to try and plough through the night in a bid to kill any jet-lag once and for all. This was achieved in memorable style with help from our colleague Mr. Woodward together with Mr. Alan Dalziel and Mrs. Abigail Roberts (never give me another Jägerbomb).

Saturday started gloriously, and we were on a mission: to purchase the remaining contents of our London Developer Co-op give-away this year. Controversially, we decided to move away from our t-shirts, and come up with something else. The Wookiee is a genius at this sort of thing, so everything was meticulously planned, and the “LDC Conference Survival Kit” was duly born—cue a morning pootling around various stores, followed by an afternoon of vigorous assembly:

A selection of our give-away tinsGive-away tin content

These babies proved to be most popular as the week progressed; we have a tough job for future give-aways now.

The remainder of Saturday was passed in time-honoured tradtion at the Big River and in ESPN (the Dolphin bar also featured quite heavily as I recall). Of course, the highlight of Saturday was (re)acquainting myself with many many folk, some not seen in three years—including finally meeting the man himself, Mr. Mat Newman! (who was more than ready with a bear-hug of course, none of this shaking hands nonsense).

The Dolphin by night

And so dear reader, I bring post #1 to a close, and shortly move to post #2…


  1. Mate, after missing you at the last couple of UKLug's it was awesome to finally get together in person. Hoping - of course - that it will happen again soon, you're an inspiration and someone whom I have learned so much from! Outstanding to finally catch up. (HUG). Mat.Mat Newman#

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