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Why Should you Attend Tech Conferences?

Learning multiples when a few like-minded people come together in the name of Conferences, Meetups, and Communities

Learning

A tech conference overloads your brain with a large about of information in a short amount of time. You will get introduced to a wide set of technologies and how they are used in the industry.
Gotchas
Lot of times, people might feel "insecure" that they don't know much when attending a conference, but here is what you need to understand. The very reason conferences are happening is to introduce you to the technology and its use cases.
Tell me one thing why would you take a course if you already know everything about it. Conferences are a forum for finding out what you don't know and how to improve on it.
Personally, after every conference, I have had a notepad full of words that I don't understand for me to go back and read about.

Meeting Cool People

Conferences, unlike meetups, are focused on a broader topic. As a classic example, PyCon covers Python not just in the software industry but also in education, research, taking a snap of that black hole, and so on. You get to meet not just hardcore techies but also people who put tech to good use in core domains.

Jobs, Internships

People at conferences are always hunting for cool people to work with. So if you are looking for a job opportunity or internship reach out to people and ask if there is an opening at their company. Pycons usually have a job board that removes the first hurdle to finding those people.

Motivation

At this point, you will give me reasons like, Oh, I am just a beginner, But I don't have much expertise to even talk to the above set of people. They know so much. I understand.
This is when the sense of community kicks in. 99% of the people at the conference are there for the community. They are there to impart and update their wisdom. So don't be afraid to even ask the dumbest question.
Gotchas
When someone makes you feel low or laughs at you for not knowing this. Walk up to one of the organizers or volunteers and file a complaint. They need to be blacklisted for such behavior. It is the norm in most communities.

Friends

A lot of people. With a similar mindset. Mostly developers who deal with the same kind of issues you are facing every day. Would understand all those comics about deleting production DBs. Would there be a better setup to create lasting friendships? I made great friends out of conferences. Hope you too will.

Swags

Who doesn't love a cool T-shirt with a kickass saying It works on my machine? It is always a nice feeling to conference swags. Not sure why. Not a big fan of stickers, though, so you can have mine too.

Great Food

Conference organizers make a big effort to provide good food for the attendees, so the amount you pay will be worth it.

It's Worth the Money

Last but not least, a conference may cost you. But it is always worth paying that money because it is completely paid back to you in the form of
  1. 1.
    Knowledge
  2. 2.
    Connections
  3. 3.
    Good Food
  4. 4.
    Last but not least - The Experience
My conferences have always been Pycon and local ones from Python Hyderabad, Delhi, and Chennai. I can vouch for their quality, the sense of community, and the effort they put to create an inclusive environment.

Conferences in Post Pandemic World

After waves of conferences over zoom, the world is finally opening up for in-person conferences. I definitely missed them. When I attended PyCon Berlin I dealt with huge social anxiety. So take it slow, and recognize that things are back to normal.
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