Last year I had the distinct pleasure of attending the first DerbyCon. I say pleasure because this conference, in its inaugural offering, was better than any previous conference I had been to. **Hold your horses** That is a bold statement you may say. Let me explain myself...
1. The presentations were top notch. BlackHat (in the old days) and DEFCON style topics. Hey, you don't believe me. Check out last year's schedule for yourself. https://www.derbycon.com/schedule-2011/
2. The attendees and presenters did not walk around with "rock star" attitudes. One of many examples I witnessed first hand: Deviant Ollam, well known for his physical security and pentesting skills, could have taken over at the Lock Picking village. He did not. Why? As he put it at the time, "This is their show and they are doing a great job!"
3. As far as I know, there were no security issues and the Goons/Jockeys/Security Team or whatever they were called were professionals and without the attitude I saw from some at DEFCON. Not knocking DEFCON, I understand how difficult it is to herd 15,000 attendees around. They did a good job too but some had a "because I said so attitude."
4. The founders/organizers seemed to care on a personal level about the attendees, not just the conference as a whole. I mean, hey, with a handle like PureHate, I expected something different from Martin Bos. Now that I know more about him, that handle is way off the mark.
This brings me to the reason I decided to ink this today. It all started with a tweet.
Uh, What! Really! Who does that! Especially since the previous tweets were talking about how they received 10 times as many CFPs this year as compared to last year!
This is something I could not get mentors in a formal mentor program to do. Much less a small team of people to do for hundreds, or possibly thousands, of people.
Now I know that everything is not all roses and there are still questions about how this Con will be in 10 years, but I think you will all agree that the foundation is right.
I am so looking forward to seeing everyone there this year. Lets get together and do lunch! Or come to my presentation (fingers crossed).