The Software Craftsmanship North America conference is coming up on November 18-19 in Chicago. I would really like to attend, but unfortunately I am in a bit of a financial bind: I can get myself there but I cannot afford either the hotel or the conference itself.

I'm putting this post together as a proposal for Stack Exchange sponsorship in exchange for me promoting Programmers at the conference and bringing back the knowledge and experience to share with the community here.

What is SCNA? Who will be there this year?

SCNA is a conference with a focus on software development as a craft. The talks cover the range from defining the software development profession and discussing the nature of what makes someone a good developer to development practices like TDD.

Last year included talks about functional programming, working with customers, and exploring what draws people to programming and keeps them going.

The full schedule and talk abstracts are unfortunately not up yet, but the list of speakers is up and there are immediately recognizable names on it, such as Corey Haines, Uncle Bob Martin, and Michael Feathers.

What's in it for Programmers.SE?

Programmers covers a wide range of topics with a special focus on development practices rather than implementation details. I think SCNA is a perfect conference for technical topics that are relevant to this site as well as for topics that cover the people aspect of software development.

I think there's a great opportunity here to give out some swag and business cards, introduce Programmers to more developers out there, and to attract more experts to this site.

Programmers doesn't have a blog of its own, but I will blog about individual sessions and the conference as a whole on my personal site and provide links in a follow-up meta post here. If/when good questions turn up during the conference that would be relevant here, I will post them and invite others at the conference to do the same.

I already got some experience promoting Stack Exchange during my trip to RallyON earlier this year. RallyON ended up being more focused on project management than software development concepts, but I believe SCNA would give us a lot more material that'd be of interest to the Programmers community.

What do you guys think? Any questions or concerns? I think this would be a great opportunity to increase our visibility and attract new users, not to mention a chance to wear my Stack Exchange t-shirts. :)

2 Answers 2


Anna, You've done some great work with this site and the Software Craftsmanship conference looks like a good match. This is a no-brainer; You're approved!

I will contact you by email to make arrangements for travel, swag, and whatever support we can provide. Continue to work with the community to see how to make the most of this conference and how to bring your experiences back to the community.

Congratulations and enjoy!

  • Got your email. Thanks! :)
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    Commented Sep 26, 2011 at 21:37
  • 3
    It is really very nice to see SE, Inc. step up and back up their words. So many times in this modern world corporations say one thing and do another. This is really refreshing... kudos.
    – Walter
    Commented Sep 26, 2011 at 22:15

My only question is...Can we try to perhaps launch a blog around this time? This seems like the perfect kick-off. I know I tossed around the idea shortly after I read about BlogOverflow and Mark asked the question about topics to discuss. It seems like if we can use the next month and a half to actually move forward with a P.SE blog, and have this be a shortly-after-launch thing, it would be a bigger boost for the site.

The way I see it is that I'm not sure how many of these experts have time to regularly participate in a Stack Exchange site. I recognize some of these names, and they aren't lightweights in software development. I think if we can also add "and we have a blog that is read by these people, and you can write and submit articles to it" to the description of the site (taking into consideration like the people who read Programmers and how Google just eats up Stack Exchange sites), I think we would be more likely convince some of these people to potentially contribute to a blog when they might not be able to contribute very many answers to questions.

Getting more programmers (the attendees) of the conference active would be fantastic, and having someone to blog about it would be great for those of us who can't attend, but finding a way to grab in some of the subject matter experts would be awesome.

  • I agree. There are still a few kinks to work out - such as rounding up regular contributors, nailing down the kinds of posts we want to accept (i.e. probably no rants, learning over raging, etc.), and finding a masochist...err...kind soul to spearhead the whole thing. As someone who seems to be keen on seeing a Programmers blog happen, would you be interested in doing some blog administrivia? I'll step up as well and give it a go.
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    Commented Sep 25, 2011 at 2:32
  • @Anna Sure. I'm settled into my new job and apartment (and for the most part living now). I'm not sure what kind of guidance there is for seeking out contributors and all of that. I suppose I could read everything on Meta.SO and see how other sites developed their blogs and start with trying to define what our blog is and getting some kind of consensus.
    – Thomas Owens Mod
    Commented Sep 25, 2011 at 3:10
  • Let me ask around and dig up information on getting a blog going again. We can then find time to chat about it. Sound good?
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    Commented Sep 27, 2011 at 4:06
  • @Anna Sure. I'm not sure if you want to use the SE chat, email, or some other means, but yeah.
    – Thomas Owens Mod
    Commented Sep 27, 2011 at 10:18

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