CodeMash 2013A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of flying to Detroit and then driving down to Sandusky, Ohio for CodeMash 2013.  CodeMash is probably the biggest conference in the midwest, has been going on since 2006, and covers development of all varieties.  There are presentations on .NET, Java, Ruby, iOS, Android, web development, machine learning, and much more.  It’s great attending CodeMash because you’re just about guaranteed to learn about something you have never looked at before.

Last year I presented an introduction to Android.  This was my first big presentation (outside of presenting to a large group of people at work, nearly all of whom I already knew) and it went pretty well.  This time around, I gave two different presentations on Windows Azure Mobile Services.  One of the presentations was on iOS and Mobile Services and was similar to ones I’ve given recently (with a few new features).  The other one was on Android and Mobile Services which was really exciting.  The reason this was so exciting was that we don’t actually have an official SDK for Android yet.  However, one of the Microsoft MVPs, Sasha Goldshtein, created an Android SDK.  This unofficial SDK is available to download on GitHub and actually gives you access to everything in Mobile Services.  Using Sasha’s SDK, you can take advantage of asynchronous data storage, user authentication, and push notifications in addition to all of the server side features you get in Mobile Services.  While we will have an official SDK out in due time, I’m going to make available the source code for the app I demonstrated in this presentation in case anyone wants to get started with it today (that should be coming soon).  Both of my presentations went well though being stacked against the Bacon Bar did not work in my favor as far as attendance went.  You can access the slides from my presentations here:

Outside of the presentation, the conference was a lot of fun and a great success.  We had set up a Windows Azure booth and I was able to talk to quite a few people about Windows Azure and Mobile Services which was great.  Many people were blown away by all the things you can do with Windows Azure now (It’s not just Cloud Services anymore).  I only made it to a couple of sessions but what I saw was great.  The organizers did an amazing job and everyone that attended really kept with the CodeMash spirit.  If I had one complaint, it would be the same as anyone else:  the WiFi was horrific.  It was pretty weird seeing how amazing the WiFi seemed to be last year and how poor it was this year.  That being said, even that couldn’t prevent CodeMash 2013 from being a success. 

Chris Risner