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The BLUG conference was amazing. I had a great time, saw many people I really like, and watched a great deal of technical skill transfer take place as well as some wonderful peer to peer mentoring happening between some of the most experienced in our community and some of the newest members. Scott Souder gave a fantastic opening keynote talk that was fresh, frank, and encouraging. I love his energy and attitude, as well has his respect for the core products. Louis Richardson also did a great job. He makes a very compelling case for social software in general and tells the story in a very positive way.
Paul presented his very excellent 1 day class on how hacking actually works, with an eye toward knowing what you need to know to protect yourself as best you can. He invited me to sit in and I enjoyed it as well as any of the students in the class. His demo at the end of the day makes the point about keeping up with your software security updates better than any I've ever seen. If you ever have the chance to take Paul's class, I really suggest you do so.
Theo has done an unbelievable job with BLUG. He's brought in terrific sponsors, and he makes sure to do them justice by highlighting them during the conference. The result is the best free content I've ever seen at a conference. The venue was simply incredible. The Grand Beguinage of Leuven is one of the most amazing sites I've ever been able to visit. The 13th - 17th century architecture has been preserved and in some respects modernized without losing its character at all. I've never seen anything like the massive, exposed, post and beam construction with visible tool marks from more than 700 years ago.
I am also going on record to say the beer in Leuven, Belgium is the best I've ever had anywhere in the world. Sorry, my German friends, they have you beat by a long way. I don't normally even notice one beer from another much, yet at least one of them here made me stop in the middle of a conversation when I tasted it to just appreciate how it is. The best is, I'm told, yet to come. I was given a gift from a client here of what I'm told is the very best beer in the world -- an extremely rare product that has been known to cause huge lines on the one occasion it was recently sold through stores (normally it is sold in very small quantities directly from the monastery where it is brewed). I'll write more on that later, with a link to an article about it. I'm bringing home the gift of two bottles.
For those who were in my session this afternoon, thanks for piling in. I know the room was jammed up with about 20 people unable to get seats. I really appreciate all your support. I promised that I'd post my presentation tonight. Here's me keeping that promise at nearly 23:00 after touring a local brewery. See how dedicated I am?
BLUG 2013 - A3 Stuff Andrew Thinks you should know.pdf
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