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Recap of Android Summit 2017


I recently attended and spoke at Android Summit, an Android conference organized by the folks at Capital One. Special shoutout to Jared A Sheehan, Michael Jones and the entire organizing committee for running a fabulous event which raised $6000 for Women who Code.

All speakers received a Phillips Hue Starter Kit as a speaker gift which I've used to toggle and dim my living room lights via Amazon Echo. So much fun!

I had a prior commitment and could only attend Day 1 but here are my highlights.

Process & Workflow

A common theme on Day 1 was process and workflow talks which tied in beautifully with Kelly Shuster's keynote.

Kelly is an excellent story teller. In her keynote, she connected a story of communication from her theatre background to how developers, designers and testers need to work together to reduce boiler plate conversations when designing and developing apps. I gave a similar talk earlier this year at Chicago Roboto with my co-worker and designer Jess Moon about how we work together to design and build apps at my company.



Cory and Lana from Groupon talked about how they involve everyone in their company to QA their own app aka dogfooding. (They called it catfooding)


Travis Himes, my co-worker also talked about tips and tricks on being a "lazy" programmer like writing aliases for your most used git commands (gs for git status) in your bashrc file.

Kotlin

There were two talks on Kotlin on Day 1 with Josh Skeen talking about Kotlin from a technical perspective (slides) and Dan Kim talking about it from an adoption perspective. Josh used an old Java-based Android app he had written and converted it into Kotlin.  He also recommended trying out programming challenges on exercism.io to familiarize yourself with the language.

Dan's confession that it took 430 days for his co-worker and him to convert the Basecamp app was an eye-opener. Adoption of a new language takes time and he advises starting with small conversions and things that get you excited about learning something new - not tests and writing idiomatic Kotlin.


All sessions were recorded at Android Summit so they should be up on Youtube in a few weeks.

Here is my talk on building an app for multiple screens by mastering Android's app resources.

Lastly, we need more conferences like Android Summit!

I've attended and spoken at several Android conferences in the United States and this is the first one I've been to that has 3 tracks - for developers, designers and testers. Cross-pollination was a theme and they had a range of speakers covering multiple topics. More conferences need to have multiple tracks to involve and engage everybody involved in building an Android app. Thanks Android Summit!

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