Thoughts on YOW 2015 Brisbane

Thanks to my employer, my self and some of my colleagues attended YOW 2015 Brisbane this week. It was a positive experience and I wanted to write down my thoughts about it.

What's YOW?

YOW is the biggest 'software development conference' in Australia. It's a two day evennt, held yearly in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. IMHO YOW gets some really good speakers down to Australia from all over the world. And it's has a general focus on the whole of software industry (in contrast to say RubyConf which is focused on Ruby).

The crowd

The conference seems to attract a lot of 'enterprice types'. Also I saw more Java and .Net folks.

The talks


  • Business mapping by Dan North
  • Engineering and Exploring the Red Planet by Anita Sengupta and Kamal Oudrhiri

Good ones

  • Deploying and Scaling Microservices by Sam Newman
  • Microservices - Building Software that is #neverdone by James Lewis
  • Agile is Dead (Long Live Agility) by Dave Thomas (Pragmatic)
  • Designing for Failure: Scaling Uber's Backend by Breaking Everything by Matt Ranney
  • Facebook's Product Infrastructure by Adam Wolff

Food and Swag

'Every conference I attend is going to be judged by it's food and swag' - Anonymous developer

Food was alright, nothing to complain about. However, I'd appreciate it if they could provide a warm lunch instead of stuff straight out of the fridge.

As for the swag, again it was just OK. Considering the ticket price the swag is nothing to write home about.


All in all I enjoyed YOW. High quality speakers and talks that are pretty hard to come across in other tech conferences in Australia are present in YOW. And it has been like that pretty consistently (this is the second YOW conference that I have attended).

If you are from the Ruby/Node/Python 'side' you might find the crowd a bit different from that of, say, CampJS. But it's all good. It's good get a different perspective of the software industry and be exposed to different verticals of it.