I read some article about Universities can provide two types of graduates. First graduates are those who are ready to go to job market with the “just-enough” skill that they got from the university. Another type of graduates are those who learn and deepen their skill on top on the skill that they gain from the university.
Which group I belong to?
After attending the OSDC, I look into myself and realise that even being one of the top students in the university, I am still belong to the first group. The knowledge I gain are lots but only basic knowledge. In the conference, I heard the talks by top person like Rasmus Lerdorf, Rusty Russell, Nat Torkington or other “computer-field” important people. Being honest, most of the stuff they talked are really new for me and some of them I don’t even understand.
So what do I gain from this conference?
- From Ian Clatworthy: Distributed Revision Control System
Working in Subversion controlled environment, I had a headache in cleaning up the conflict when I need to merge branches and trunks changes together. This Distributed Revision Control System like Bazaar, seems will help me through the merging process.
- From Scott Barnett: Integrating PHP and Active Directory
I heard a lot about Active Directory, but I didn’t know how it works and being implemented a software like PHP. For the Active Directory uses for Thuringowa City Council, Scott manipulates the Active Directory uses LDAP and provides a Seamless Authentication for the website. New words learned: Samba, Kerberos, NTLM
- From Josh Heumann: Perl6
Perl is one of new language for me in Linux world and one of my least favourite language. I learned some basic programming syntax and technique using perl when I was doing my Software Development Tools course in Uni. Josh introduces new method implemented in Perl 6.
- From Ben Cornwell: Introducing PHP 6
Although with limited PHP skill, I look forward to use PHP 6 with some enhanced model. A good start for me is improving my “Dating” website that I done for my assignment to use more Object Oriented model provided by PHP since I am trying to commercialize the website. Interesting about PHP 6 is the unicode support which means that I can target those Chinese users.
- From Paul King: Agile Developer Practices for Dynamic Languages
Paul emphasised the importance of how to Refactoring the code, implementing mocking for exhaust testing in Dynamic Languages like Ruby. New words learned: Static and Dynamic typing, Design Patterns in Dynamic Programming
- From Rasmus Lerdorf: Exploring the Broken Web
Rasmus’ talk is one the best talk that I listened to. He demonstrated on how form injection can be done on some website to do the hacking. Although he never releases his code, he showed us how Yahoo actually filter all the malicious threat website. Interesting part is that one of the guy together with Ben Cornwell managed to write the same code to check on malicious website, I am still in the process of searching for their blog to download the code
- From Jonathon Coombes: Database Indexing for Developers, Evan Leybourn: PostgreSQL Tips and Tricks for Developers, Leif Eriksen: Developing Database Driven apps independent of any specific database
Indexing is one main are in database system. Jonathon showed us how to create an efficient indexing to provide faster search and minimize the resources being used. Postgre is a new database platform that I just heard recently from my MDFS research subject. Pasamio, MDFS developer, uses Postgre to developed the backend metadata storage. As Leif, he created an application to sit on top of most of common database platform. User of his application only need to provide the database driver detail, database user name and password, database name. This application will automatically provide the connection to the database that the user wanted.
- From Nat Torkington: Software For the Future
Nat provided interesting talk on why Open source community fail when compete with big company like Microsoft and how to overcome the problem. Although most of his talk is not really related to software development world, during his talk, I learned “how to do a good presentation”. I loved the way he presenting his speech. Normally when speaker talked more than one hour and without having interaction with the audiences, the audiences will get restless, but Nat is different, all audiences in the room seems follow his flow and enjoying his talk. This skill is handy for me as I need to do a presentation on my master thesis, and I know this will not be easy for me without a lot of practice.
To do list:
- Deepen computer skills by read more computer related website and remember all the terms
- Practice on writing. This blog is one of my first move on practising my writing skill as I am really bad in expressing what in my brain in writing. Be patient with me
- Practice on speaking publicly and be active talker instead of sitting at the corner and just listening to what people say. Although I did talked to people in OSDC conference, I admit that I am not active enough. My next target is be Linux Conference 2008, so from now till then, I will gain more knowledge and can talk actively with those Geek guys.