Salesforce TrailheaDX 17: a playground for Developers

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It is the first time I have been at a Salesforce’s event and I couldn’t wish anything better than TrailheaDX (TDX) to meet my huge expectations. Thousands of developers, executives, and customers from all over the world came to San Francisco to see what the future of Salesforce holds.

Well, let me briefly describe what this event deals with. TDX is the must-attend developer conference of the year. Salesforce’s engineers, scientists, and product leaders guide attendees on a path of discovery and adventure into the most recent Salesforce news and technologies. Keynotes, Talks and practical sessions entertain attendees for two days of full immersion in Salesforce.

This post will not dwell on the innovation and technologies that Salesforce is going to bring on the market (I will write about it in my next post), but it will focus on the Conference organization and the experience developers like me lived.

Let’s start from the Map

it’s not easy to find the words to explain what I felt when I entered in the conference watching it for the first time. It was like a Playground. Lights, games, stands, and much more enlightened the whole building’s area and thousands of people were running to take a seat at the very first sessions.

The building was huge and I needed a map to start my journey.

TDXMap

  • Theaters and Breakout rooms hosted developers’ sessions and talks. Main topics were about Einstein, Salesforce DX, Mobile, etc.
  • Inside Green areas, attendees could enjoy games, take pictures with funny Einstein puppets, and win very nice prizes
  • Blue areas were my favorite ones. You could enjoy Hands-on Learning, Hacks, and challenges. I would have liked to have one more day to finish all the hacks
  • The last but not the least was the Demo area (marked by flags in the middle of the map). Many interesting demos about Lightning, Heroku, and Einstein entertained the attendees. In my opinion, they were more useful than sessions, because you could have 1:1 questions and answers with Salesforce’s employees.

Opening Keynote

Parker Harris opened the TrailheaDX with a great speech. I didn’t think he is so charismatic and funny at the same time. It was great hearing from him the exponential growth that Salesforce is living.

Leah McGowen-Hare talked about Einstein and Salesforce DX and how these technologies will revolutionize the way we interact with data and we develop.

The technology roadmap that Salesforce is tracking is straight and effective. Probably Einstein’s potential is still coming out, but its role in the future is sure.

Anyway, what had most impressed me was Salesforce DX. It’s a blend between a framework and a toolkit with the purpose to optimize the Developer Experience. I really appreciated that, because I think it’s very important to trust in a Company that takes care of its developers and not only of the customers.

Too many sessions in only two days

The most valuable part of this conference was probably talks and sessions. Listening to the experiences and the suggestions from other Project Managers and developers about Salesforce’s edging technologies is something priceless.

Unfortunately, it has been a nightmare for me. There were so many interesting talks and hands-on sessions that I wasn’t able to choose. I finally decided to concentrate on Salesforce DX and Platform Events, but Einstein and Heroku were two worlds I would have really liked to explore. I hope to receive a free ticket invitation from Salesforce to take part at Dreamforce this autumn and continue my discovery sessions 😀

Of course, sessions are not enough to properly know how to use Salesforce DX and other tools. Practice and real projects’ use cases are mandatory to fix the knowledge.

Anyway, if I may give a suggestion, I would have split the conference and the sessions along three days.

DevTDX17

Mini Hacks were great

The part I most enjoyed was the Mini Hacks. Eight mini challenges to test your Salesforce knowledge. I would have spent a whole day doing that, but unfortunately, the time wasn’t enough. I finally did five of them, not enough to have a chance to win a Go-Pro 5 Hero (what a pity :().

For people who wanted to study Salesforce, the Camp Quick Start area provided several PCs to make Trailheads and gain badges.

Funny prizes and tons of stickers

What would a conference be without souvenirs and stickers? Salesforce provided a stand with dozens of prizes to be unlocked. You had to complete the TDX’s challenges and games to get your souvenirs. It was a nice and funny way to learn Salesforce.

My favorite one was the Astro Water Bottle. Very useful!!!

What about stickers? I don’t think to have enough PCs to stick them on :D!

PrizesTDX

The Party side of the Conference

When the code meets the Beer… Creativity comes out!”. That’s what happened during the Salesforce night party. I think the picture below may perfectly resume the situation :D. Salesforce, Deloitte Digital, and beer make the perfect blend. By the way, I am grateful to Deloitte Digital to have given me the opportunity to attend the event.

TDX Beer

A Victorian theater was the perfect place for party and networking. I shared experiences and opinions with many people, always with a beer in my hand! Awesome I would say.

Night2TDX17

Conclusions

Well, what else to say! It has been an event I would suggest to everyone. People, talks, and sessions have been great and very useful. I hope to find the time, between a project and another, to deepen the topics I have seen at the conference!

In the while, I will write about Salesforce DX as soon as I gathered all the notes and I hope to write about Dreamforce in autumn :D.

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