DevFest Florida will be a treasure trove of talks for Android developers!

by Joey deVilla on November 7, 2017

I’m looking forward to spending this Saturday at DevFest Florida, the Sunshine State’s biggest technology conference on all things Google.

It’s put together by three Florida-based Google developer groups — Orlando’s, Melbourne’s, and Tampa Bay’s — and considering the ticket price (early birds got their tickets for $100 or even less; last-minute buyers could get in for $150), you get some serious conference bang for the buck. I’ve been to conferences that charged ten times as much, but didn’t offer as enticing a venue or a speaker/subject line-up.

To begin with, how many conferences have you been to in a building that looks like this?

There’s also an impressive line-up of speakers from Google, Mozilla, Microsoft, Shopify, Viacom Berlin, and more.

Better still, that line-up is 42% women, a percentage so high that it’s sadly the exception rather than the rule, even in 2017. I commend the DevFest Florida organizers for doing this (and you should too)!

I’m coming to DevFest Florida not just with an Android presentation, but a hankering to see a lot of Android presentations. If Android development’s your thing too, there’s a lot for you at this conference. Check out the schedule below, where I’ve highlighted the presentations that would be interesting to an Android developer…

Morning

Click the schedule to see it at full size.

There are not one, but two keynotes that are applicable to all developers, and then I’m planning on catching, and then lunch:

  • Kotlin: Uncovered by Victoria Gonda, because any Android coding I’m doing from here on will be in Kotlin, and
  • Espresso: A Screenshot is Worth 1,000 Words by Sam Edwards, because I’m curious about Espresso’s UI testing.

Early afternoon

Click the schedule to see it at full size.

I will be giving my presentation at 3:00 p.m., and its full title is Native Android development for people who’ve been avoiding it (cough) Web developers (cough), and it’s aimed at the web developer who’s been avoiding native development because they heard that it was nothing but pain, heartbreak, and frustration. That may have been the case a couple of years ago, but it’s a whole lot better now.

Also worth checking out for Android developers:

  • The new Android ViewModel in Action by Danny Preussler, where he takes a closer look at the official Android ViewModel,
  • RxJava in Baby Steps by Annyce Davis, where she covers reactive programming in Android with RxJava, and
  • If you don’t need an intro to Android native development, skip my talk and go to Make your app instant! by Yuliya Kaleda, which is happening at the same time. I need to learn about Android Instant Apps and am going to have to get my hands on the video of that talk, and maybe pick her brain at the speaker dinner.

Late afternoon

Click the schedule to see it at full size.

After the mid-afternoon break, which will have blondies, brownies, red velvet cupcakes and smoothies to re-energize us, there’ll be more. I’ll be supporting my fellow Sourcetoad coworker Connor Tumbleson and catching his Attacking an Android Application presentation at 5:00 p.m. This portion of the day is Android-rich with Connor’s talk, as well as these others:

  • Get a Room with Mark Murphy, who literally wrote the book on Android development — he’ll be talking about Google’s ORM engine/persistence library, Room. Anyone attending this session needs to greet him with “Oh hi, Mark!”
  • Video Processing on Android by Namrata Bandekar, where she covers the benefits of two leading media processing libraries, and how you can leverage them to enhance Android’s native MediaCodec API to accomplish these tasks.
  • Build a Faster UI with Constraint Layout by Scott Thisse, who’ll show you how to harness the power of the new default Activity layout, ConstraintLayout.
  • Developing iOS and Android apps with Flutter by Mike Traverso. He’ll talk about using Flutter and Dart to use a single codebase to write apps for Android and iOS.

DevFest Florida is a mind-blowing treasure trove of talks for the Android developer — and I haven’t even covered what’s in there for web devs! I’m so looking forward to this one, and I hope to see you there!

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