logo_baruco-c626921a4173e397d6d6e841c029ff4eThe first time I heard about the conference was back in april in Ruby Weekly. As always we spoke about it with the guys and (like every time) we said “cool” and forgot about it. After a couple of months we started looking again into conferences and decided that it was time to go to one. There was a really interesting one in Berlin (with camping and stuff) but we decided to go to Baruco (more people were attending it). And you won’t believe it, all the tickets were gone. But we were obstinate and wrote on twitter (actually Klemen did it) and got two tickets. We could get a third one, but Rok decided not to go (too much in love with iOS and does not like Ruby :P ) . Booked a plane from Venice, a 4 night stay on Airbnb and we were good to go.

photoThe morning of departure came really fast. The flight was nice and fast and in no time we were already in Barcelona. Bus from terminal T1 to T2, train and we were already on placa Catalunya. We walked a lot on our first day, because I wanted to see as many things as I could. The funny thing about people in Barcelona (even if we got the information that BC is the 3rd most touristic city in the world) is that not a lot of people speak english. It is quite funny when you go to a restaurant and you try to tell the waiter that you don’t speak spanish but he/she still speaks back to you in spanish.

In the evening we checked the schedule of Baruco and realized that the conference starts on Friday and not on thursday (like we thought and because of that we arrived on wednesday), but there were just a couple of workshops (actually quite interesting, but we decided not to go). So another day of sightseeing. But it was worthy, because it was a Catalunian holiday and all the people were dressed in the same way, singing songs, …

Finally friday came and we were quite excited about the conference. It has a comic like theme where all the speakers were presented like superheroes.

The host started the conference with a programming task to wake and warm up the audience. So lets quickly take a look at the things that we learned at Baruco:

  1. Ruby on Rails is cool - And it really is. People that program in Ruby just love it.

  2. “matz” and mruby

One of the main speakers was also the designer and developer of ruby. He presented a lightweight ruby interpreter named mruby. It is designed to be modular and easy embedded (it should be able to live inside other applications). This achievement was sponsored by the Regional Innovation Creation R&D Programs of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan.

  1. Robots, robots and robots

Ruby can also be used on controllers and using it is quite easy. http://juliancheal.co.uk/ . He is the master mind behind http://artoo.io/ . (He has also frameworks for other programing languages). All you need to do is require the library and run the program. And the robot will hopefully move :)

  1. Dont be scared of lightning talks

Yes, if you have a chance to give a lightning talk. Do it. Presenting a gem or just something that you do to better your working process is already enough. At the conference we had lightning talks from people developing gems (a lightweight version of nokogiri), to people who left their jobs to travel the world, to people who just liked to show their way of creating notes :) . 5 minutes of time to talk about anything. And everyone got a toy fox at the end. Isn’’ that cool :)

  1. Leon Gersing – Github employee

His nickname on twitter is rubybuddha :) You should follow him. A really simple guy (remember the picture with the barefoot guy, yes thats him). He did not have a technical speech, but a simple one, telling people that we should not follow a perfect dream, but live in the moment. Why? if you take a look at a program specification you can say that this is the reality. But as programmers start to program, are not they creating a new reality and something that people will use and maybe worship (yeah, Apple). So why follow something that not exists when we are creating it?

  1. Ruby is not only guys – Emily Stolfo and release responsibility

Yeah, overall there were something like 30 guys for each girl :) Emiliy works at MongoDB and talked about the process of releasing a new version of a gem and the responsibility of showing what is deprecated and needs to be changed.

  1. Tom Stuart and refactoring ruby with monads

  2. Erik Michaels-Ober benchmarking and writing fast ruby

  3. Always take a look at things that already exists

One of the speakers was the young Jose Tomas Albornoz. One day he decided to make a gameboy emulator in ruby. He also made a deal with the Baruco conference that he was going to present the emulator on the conference (before even starting it).  It took a couple of weeks of hard work but he managed to create a emulator and render an image. And what he did next was to check if something like that already existed. And bum, it did :) So, before you start something do a little research … Not much gain from re-inventing something that already exists :)

  1. Baruco overview

At the conference there were about 600 people. The speakers were cool, some of theme were technical, while others shared anecdotes and life stories,…

The ticket price also included lunch and beverages. At the end of every day there was a meetup (last day party) which A lot of people attended those meetups so more than one idea and experience was shared.

Bottom line is, that I would recommend Baruco to every ruby loving developer. You probably won’t get your next project there, but maybe, just maybe an idea for the next big thing (and no, I’m not talking about iPhone7 :p)

A special shout out and thanks also goes to the #Codegram team for organizing this magnificent event.