So, we’ve had to keep this under our hats for a little while, but yesterday Apple posted their Beyond WWDC page, revealing the co-located conferences Layers, AltConf, and CocoaConf Next Door. The first two of these have taken place the same week as WWDC for a few years now, but CocoaConf making an appearance that week is new.
As a CocoaConf regular, they asked me to participate in CocoaConf Next Door, and so I’ll be doing three sessions (and likely some other events). We’re still working out what those will be, as it’s a little tricky to strategize a conference talk the week of WWDC and minimize the chance of it being rendered obsolete by changes to iOS and macOS revealed at WWDC. I mean, it’s not like you’d want to build a talk around view controller rotation-handling for that week, since the “right way” to do that seems to change every couple years. But you also don’t want to do something that’s so evergreen that it’s boring either.
I will probably reprise my talk about media frameworks and Swift from Forward Swift and CocoaConf Chicago, because it’s the best one I’ve done in years, and it does get into some pretty interesting areas about the Swift language itself and where it struggles to live up to its ambitions (I blogged about some of this in Render Unto C-sar). I’ll be putting more work into the talk — maybe by June, I can actually get my custom
AUAudioUnit working (I’m pretty stuck at the moment, and a DTS support incident did not unblock me).
It’s possible that for the last day of the conference, I’ll have a new talk based on things that get revealed on Monday. That would be a great way to keep things fresh, though I want to avoid Janie Clayton’s “First to pee on Mount Everest” syndrome, i.e., being the first to try out some new feature or API, but not enlighten or bring away anything from it except to basically yell “first post!” So, still thinking about how to make sure that’ll still be valuable to attendees.
CocoaConf’s blog has details about how they’ll schedule their time around the WWDC keynotes so we don’t miss out on the good stuff (or, god forbid, another 30-minute Apple Music presentation). Early Bird registration is open. It’s $999, which seems pretty reasonable for a four-day conference (CocoaConf is usually like $600 for two days, and across the street, Layers’ early bird price is $850 for three days, to say nothing of WWDC costing $1600). Maybe we’re going to be somebody’s Plan B if they don’t win the WWDC ticket lottery but still want to be in town that week; we’ll make it a pretty damn worthwhile Plan B. Plus, CocoaConf registration includes tickets to the James Dempsey and the Breakpoints concert on Wednesday night.
The other thing that’s exciting about this week is the degree to which it represents a real, ongoing change in Apple’s openness and its attitude towards the larger iOS/macOS/tvOS/watchOS developer ecosystem. As Daniel Jalkut reminded us yesterday:
In 2013, Apple played a role in causing CocoaConf Alt's cancellation. In 2017, the show is featured on WWDC site. https://t.co/zsrZauMQJx
— Daniel Jalkut (@danielpunkass) March 27, 2017
So, I’m looking forward to doing some new talks at CocoaConf Next Door, meeting up with friends in the evening, and certainly hoping that App Camp for Girls’ Jean McDonald finds a suitable karaoke place for her “Core Audio” group of developer-singers (if they have it, I’m calling dibs on “History Maker”).