Why I love what I do
I never thought that I would end up working in tech. Sure, I like technology, I’ve been fascinated with communication since I can remember — probably because I talk too much — but I truly never expected that I would find a way to merge these two worlds together…somehow though, I did.
At the present time I find myself in the middle of a challenging project called With The Best.
I have believed in this from the beginning, and after being fully immersed for a couple of months now, beginning to understanding the idiosyncrasies of the various technologies — and failing a few times too — I have come to realize that I love what I do, and I finally see why.
So what do I do?
I run an online conference program for developers called With the Best. Since the conferences are focused on developer content, the technologies and personnel that we approach each month are different — hence, my now broadened understanding of what is going on.
Every month I find myself immersed in a new technology — whether is VR, AR, IoT or AI — that I must learn inside out.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not talking about the application of the subjects, but a pretty in-depth knowledge of the field in general, trends, and necessary tools. You see, for a girl who has not grown up with a background in science — who has always used what was accessible, but never been able to fully understand the back end of it — doing what I do is extremely exciting, and I crave more and more.
So why do I love it?
One of the reasons that I love what I do is because I am always in contact with new people. First, there’s the one who makes the technology, repositories, builds the applications, platforms, robots, etc.
When I ask someone to be a speaker, I also need to ask them for a breakdown of the technical aspects of their product, and specifically the why’s to the many questions that will inevitably be asked.
Regardless if the speaker comes from a large corporation or a hungry startup they are always ready to give me a detailed breakdown, and help me to better understand their technology.
Most of the technologies amaze me, some of them creep me out a bit (usually the ones tackling cyber security) but all of the speakers are equally involved and passionate, which I love and which makes the conference a success.
Secondly, it’s the attendees — hundreds of devs come together for two days to learn more, to help each other, to network, get a job, or promote their own work. The sense of community is beyond what I had ever expected.
The “speaker experts” and “dev attendees” merge in an open forum full of Q&A, advice and genuine curiosity. I haven’t seen anyone pegged as right or wrong, too advanced or unexperienced. In the end they all have one goal, to explain, teach, learn, develop, and share.
Although I get more excited by demos than live coding, I see how every application has a fragmented approach of that technology.
What do I use?
That’s the other part that’s more than I could imagine — we have developed our own tool for online conferences. Four devs somewhere in France managed to develop this platform (still beta, always updating after a conference) that allows speakers to login from anywhere (sometimes 8 at the same time, we tested by trial and error) and present their projects to the audience, share their screens and record their presentations. The same platform supports 1000+ devs at a time, live chat, and 1-to-1 individual sessions.
The day of — don’t cringe
As the product is still new, cringing is a routine, often important part of the job. The first two times we went live it was stressful but not too crazy, as the conferences were small still.
Fast forward to September though, we went big; AI With The Best had 100 speakers and over 700 attendees on Day 1.
I don’t know who had it harder: the four devs in France who were watching to see if months of work would crumble at once, the two girls (myself included) who created this human puzzle of speakers, months of communication and hands on managed so many people on four laptops, or the rest of the people on the platform who had no idea if the content or the platform they paid to be on would meet their expectations.
Well, now at the end of the year we have one more VRAR. Then, we get ready for more conferences in 2017.
In the end, I couldn’t be more excited to be doing what I’m doing, and sharing With the Best to the developer community at large. I hope to see you there :)
By Amalia Alexandru,
Digital Product Manager, With The Best