London Perl Workshop 2018 - Report

The night before the event was a tensed night for me as I was still working on my slides. Around 5 am, I got all slides ready and it was time to get ready for the event.
Why so early the event starts at 9:30 am? Well, this year, I was attending the even not just a speaker but also part of the event organizer. So I decided to arrive early
to help the team. I arrived the venue at 7:00 am, however the security said we are allowed only after 7:30 am. So I waited at the reception area for the team. First person
who arrived was Rick Deller with his colleague. We went inside and started arranging the stands for the sponsors together. Then little later arrived Katherine Spice and Ferguson.
We arranged the attendees list, free T-shirt, stickers etc. Now was the time for the last member of the team, Julien. He came with the recording kit. We went to the main
theatre to setup the kit. Ferguson got on the with setup. Julien and I, went down to help Katherine.

People started coming in for registration around 8:30 am. I was asked to help with registration and giving away free T-shirt. Being part of organizer, I wasn't free to just jump from one talk to another. In the morning session, I attended the talk Publish or perish with Perl 6: adventures of an academician in the Perl 6 developers world by Juan Julián Merelo-Guervós.

Then we had lunch break, kindly sponsored by Martin Brooks for the organizer. Post lunch I attended my second talk Contrarian Perl by Tom Hukins. At the end of the talk, Katherine reminded me it is my turn to present the talk The power of mentoring. As always, I was lucky to see Dave Cross, Barbie, Andrew Solomon and Sue Spence in my audience. If I am not mistaken Tom Hukins was also there. Having popular faces in the room, meant a world to me. There were few other familiar faces e.g Sam, Simon, Julien. There were also couple of very well known faces among the audience that I have seen in every local social/tech meet. Unfortunately I have never formally introduced myself to them. It was special day for me for one more reason, I had special guest, Jun Wang, my work colleague in the audience. She has never been to London Perl Conference before. It was so kind of her to find the time for my talk. My talk went pretty smooth, didn't go over the allotted time like before in Glasgow last time. I had plenty of time for Questions and Answers. It was great to have real "Mentor" and "Mentee" to support my talk on "Mentoring". Julien, a real "Mentor" who came with his "Mentee". It was nice to hear positive review straight after the talk from the people who actual involved in "Mentoring" in day job.

Post Coffee break, we had main attraction of the event "I'm a Former London.PM Leader - Ask Me Anything". It was hosted by our very own Katherine Spice. It was such a lovely moment to know about Former London PM Leader. At least I got to know about Leo Lapworth and Sue Spence. Others I already knew as they are still actively involved. Then came the lightning talks organised by none other than our own Former London.PM leader Leon Brocard. I have yet to formally introduced myself to him. I have been his big fan ever since I started attending London Perl Workshop. For a change, this year, I attempted to give lightning talk as well. Not sure, where I got the confidence to even attempt. My topic for lightning talk was What after the Pull Request Challenge.

The best part of lightning talk is that you get wider audience to address. My lightning talk was done well within the time slot and well received as well. There were some other lightning talks worth attending.

After the lightning talks, Julien took the opportunity to deliver the "Thank You" speech. At the end, drinks were organised at the venue. Earlier I used to leave for home straight after the lightning talks. This time, I stayed back so that I could get to speak to some of them. I was lucky to find Tom Hukins and got to speak to him for good amount of time. I also got to speak Ferguson and Rick for future plans. We came up with couple of ideas. Lets see how it would pan out. Around 7 pm, I decided to leave for home.

Last but not the least, I would like to mention 2 incidents that really surprised me. At the pre-event evening meet-up, I met a girl from Romania. Julien told me that she came for London Perl Workshop only after reading about it in the Perl Weekly Newsletter. I was introduced as co-editor of the Perl Weekly newsletter. The second moment was, during the end of even drink session, I was talking to Srivats, a complete stranger came forward and thanked me. He later disclosed that he recently subscribed to Perl Weekly newsletter and follow it very closely.

Last but not the least, I would like to thank all the sponsors and community who supported us through out.

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About Mohammad Sajid Anwar

user-pic 2022 White Camel Awardee. CPAN Contributor. Co-editor of Perl Weekly newsletter. Run Perl Weekly Challenge @PerlWChallenge. Indian by birth, British by choice.