Friday, August 12, 2011

Agile2011 Day 4

This was a wonderful, long, crazy day.

I woke up with a meditation on my mind. I was feeling calm, happy, centered. Morning routine was a breeze, and the walking route to the conference hotel is much more comfortable than the old one.

I spent a lot of time in coaches' corner again. I met some really nice people and had some great talks. I learned the "S.C.A.R.F." acronym and how to use it. I saw old friends. I met new friends.

The Grand American hotel is a wonderful conference hotel. It is comfortable, attractive, and divides into smaller areas nicely. The staff are ninjas, keeping the place clean and preparing for all the events and reconfigurations quickly and quietly. In fact, if you turn your back on your soda, it may totally disappear. James Grenning gave me a glass emblazoned with his book cover, and I had to guard it carefully lest it be swept away by cleaning ninjas. They are so quiet, polite, and efficient that one can never be annoyed with them. They are all superheroes.

I saw the few remaining Agile In A Flash cards (all sold out by end of day) and the three signed copies in the auction (also gone now). This has been a good week for us as authors, and there are new connections and new initiatives that have opened up to us because of Agile In A flash. It is all the more satisfying because the idea was so unusual and only Pragmatic Programmers understood what we were up to. I had a good time talking with other authors, coaches, consultants. I fear to list them all, because I will not remember all of them, but will mention that I really enjoyed chatting with Diana Larsen who I just met. She's invited me to a greater participation in some work at the Agile Alliance fringe and with other professional coaches like myself (perhaps better).

I was sad to see that my Industrial Logic colleague, Bill Wake, was scheduled give a talk on breaking down stories at 3:30, the same time as my Agile Apologetic talk. Then I found that my coauthor, Jeff Langr was scheduled to give his talk about whether to buy agile tools at the same time. My talk was small but we were engaged and attendees seemed to have a good time. Jeff's and Bill's were better attended, and I hear they were quite good. I suspect my lightning talk on Tuesday will the be one most likely remembered.

When I was done in Coaches' Corner I made it outside to see the freerunners, and was in a cloud of people (new friends and old) which was swept into the grand ballroom. Matt Barcomb and I appropriated an empty table, which soon became the "cool table" as we crunched together to allow more people to join. Lean Dog brethren joined us and entertained us. We watched a trampoline team do arial skiing and arial gymnastics and arial snowboarding. They were amazing olympic athletes, and one was even a contestant in American Ninja Warrior (obstacle course game show). The final scheduled entertainment was a band playing classics old and new, but they were sadly plagued with sound problems.

Following the scheduled entertainment I was invited to a room party which included many recognized great people of the Agile community and many sharp newcomers. Bonnie introduced us to fire spinning via two led-light green balls on chains, which stood in the place of actual fire. We took turns being schooled in elementary moves and it was a good time. I also had time to argue with Bryan Beachum. I talked with Diana and George and Jeff about the possibilities of helping to create cirriculum, and talked over general coaching stuff with James Shore. It was a really great time, but lasted longer into the evening/morning than I'm accustomed.

I've new friends and new ideas, and so ended day 4.