When I went in 1996, I had just started working with Notes just a month or two before, and my manager comes to me and hands me a ticket and says, 'Guess what, you are going to Orlando'. He had bought the ticket for himself, but had a conflict, and I got to go. Everything was so new that year, I just remember taking tons and tons of notes (no pun intended). I remember well all the cheering and clapping when the features of Notes 4 were revealed. Good times.
In 1999, I got to go again and learned a ton more. I think that was the year that Notes 5 was introduced to great fanfare. That was also the year that I almost accidentally knocked over Ray Ozzie. I was entering a door and it was sunny and I couldn't see someone about to come out due to the reflection, and I nearly knocked him over with the door. Thankfully Ray was nimble of feet and jumped out of the way just in time. Lotusphere was always fun for meeting people all over the world, I remember hanging that year with several Norwegians and Brits. Good times again.
For many years after that, I was either an hourly contractor or worked at a company that didn't put value in conferences. If I was to attend Lotusphere it would have to be on my own $. With my current job, I am a salaried employee, and at a company that puts value in training, so I am able to go this year.
In addition to the sessions, I hope to meet lots of people. I have tried to be more active in the Notes community, and hope to meet many that I have interacted with on Twitter, Stack Overflow, or blogs (there's or mine). If you see me, please come by and say Hi. If you have a get together, I am open to invites, I am @szavocki on twitter.
My Connect 2014 Schedule (subject to change):
Life is full of conflictI know that time conflicts are inevitable, but there are several sessions that I really wanted to attend that I can't due to conflicts. These sessions are ones I can't attend due not being able to be in two places at once.
- Creating a Great XPages User Interface (really hoping they add a second Sunday session for this one)
- Creating State of the Art Web Applications with REST services
- End-to-End Quality Processes for Top Notch XPages apps
- Improving your IBM Designer Experience
- IBM Domino App Dev: Today and Tomorrow
- Rapid XPages Dev using the Application Layout Control
- Creating a Mobile Application Framework with XPages (This one pains me the most)
In addition to the sessions, I also plan on taking two certification tests since they are offered for free. I am already an 8.5 Application Developer, so I plan on taking the update test to make me a Certified Application Developer in Notes 9. I also plan on taking the Notes Admin Test LOT-406, which if I pass will make me and Advanced Certified Application Developer in Notes 9. Right now, I am studying for both tests. I hope to take the first on on Monday, and the second on Wednesday.
Again, I hope to meet many of you that I have come to know virtually these last few years since I decided to become more involved. See you all in 11 days.