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Friends, Testing, And Happiness At EuroSTAR 2016
Back from a week at EuroSTAR in Stockholm. As with every year the organisers and the program committee did a marvellous job putting together one of the, in my opinion, best conferences out there.
This is both from the perspective of the speakers and instructors that present at the conference, but also in equal parts if not more the whole hidden and mind-boggling logistics and infrastructure problem that a conference of this size can be.
The EuroSTAR team have now put this conference together for 24 years and you can tell that they have perfected it to an art. A conference of this size is bound to have numerous incidents happening, hypothetically things like, speakers getting sick, problems with the program, busses being late etc etc.
I can only speculate from my own experiences organising smaller events, because the testimony to this conference team is that we **never** see this problems as speakers and attendees.
EuroSTAR team, I lift my hat off to you.
For me spending time in conferences nowadays is more about conferring and meeting people, old dear friends, and new acquaintances.
Of course great keynotes and interesting sessions are still there, but in large parts the main reasons I go to EuroSTAR is to refill my batteries, meet my friends, and most importantly talk, laugh, and exchange ideas, stories, and problems.
It’s an open safe environment where ideas can flourish and come together with other ideas and problems, to form into something that is sometimes larger than the sum of the parts. Going from the conference I already have new ideas and initiatives that I want to work on.
It is in the true sense of the word a very creative environment, if you choose to take advantage of it in such a way that is.
The list of people I met at EuroSTAR is too long of a list and I would miss a lot of people, so I’ll settle with sending out a thank you too each and everyone that I met at EuroSTAR this year, thank you for making my stay oh so special yet again.
This year I was invited to EuroSTAR to hold a workshop on “Cultivating a team-culture of innovation and engagement”.
This is a workshop that I created for EuroSTAR this year and in it we work with equal parts of Drive (Daniel Pink), Peopleware (DeMarco & Lister), and Creativity.
The official reviews of the workshop have to wait but judging from all the participants discussions, feedback, and reflections during and afterwards it felt like a really good workshop and I hope to get a chance to do it again and improve upon it.
I will also in the coming months write a series of blog posts around these topic in order to sharpen my thinking around these topics.
I want to extend my gratitude to Zeger Van Hese (@testsidestory) for motivating me into starting with the blog again, we now have an agreement to help each other write one blog post every month and I look forward to starting to write again.
One person who also deserves a special mention is Alexandra (@alex_schl) Schladebeck who gave a fantastic session “Growing a Company Test Community: Roles and Paths for Testers”. A ton of things that I’m picking up and incorporating at home with my own team.
Next year EuroSTAR is going to be in Copenhagen with the track chair Iris Pinkster and the theme “Magic in Testing”.
I hope to meet you there and if you’ve ever contemplated speaking at a conference then I encourage you to be on the lookout for the call for papers and send in your own story that you want to tell.
Kristoffer Nordström is a Test Developer that in over a decade has worked with technologies such as Telecommunications System, Distributed Compilers, Cloud technology, Smartphone OS development, Embedded systems, and much more.
A testing devotee, and a member of the Context-Driven test community who with his own company, consults and also teaches the course “Python for testers”