DevFest19: My experience of attending Devfest Pune 2019
7 min read
How it started?
It was the month of August, just a rational day of my life. And I was reading about the programs that google organize to help and grow the community of developers across the globe. I was reading about DSC, GDE, and GDGs. And I got to know about GDG Pune. So I researched more and learned that these Google Developer Groups organize meetups and events for students and professionals in and around Pune. Basically its like a community of like-minded people who come together to share and explore google technologies and their experiences.
After a few weeks, I read a tweet from GDGpune about DevFest19 which is the largest google related event that happens every year. So I registered for it. Around 5k-6k people registered for the event and only 1000 people got the invitations. Luckily I was one of them.
DevFest19 organized by GDG Pune
I was attending this kind of event for the first time in my life. As most of the students including myself weren’t aware of such events and activities. The event was scheduled from 8 am to 6 pm at JW Marriott hotel in Pune. I reached on time. The first hour was all about registrations and networking. I met so many awesome people out there. I got to interact with them and discuss various aspects of a developer’s journey. The place was surrounded by ignited minds and that turned the whole atmosphere into an exciting and enthusiastic place.
Mr. Rahul Narvekar sharing his life lessons from 1994 to 2019
And the event started with an inspiring talk “Old monk in a new era” by Mr. Rahul Narvekar (CEO of sun and sand advisers). Listening to his childhood stories and how his reading habits and interest helped him make his career was so inspiring for the young generation. He talked about how he started his career at an early age, as a door to door salesman to support his education. After being expelled from his entrepreneurship program for asking too many questions and being a trouble maker, he started and failed in so many businesses.
The one thing I loved which he learned throughout his journey and asked everyone to be was ‘Be Besharam’. And do whatever you want to do. He talked about how people with you spend most of your time affects your life. You have to cut those people and be around people who support you, encourages you.
Manasi Joshi, Director of Engineering at Google
Manasi Joshi, Director of Engineering at Google introduced us with AI and Machine learning. The growth of AI in the past few years has increased at an enormous rate. It has significant potential to help solve challenging problems. She talked about ML fairness and shared about her work with teams at Google and how they are working on achieving ML fairness.
Sandeep Gupta demonstrating ML module
Then Sandeep Gupta, Product Manager for TensorFlow at Google talked about machine learning with TensorFlow. He demonstrated a live module of machine learning on TensorFlow and explained how ML can change the way we see technology. Also, he shared some resources to kick start your journey with machine learning. The fun part was where he shows a demonstration of a teachable machine. That encouraged me to try ML now.
Click here to see Teachable machine its fun!
Bruce Schwack sharing his journey with Netmeds
And then comes Bruce Schwack, Co-founder of Netmeds. The man with the coolest entry on stage. I enjoyed his talk most. He is a very funny and energetic guy. He talked about how his startup and business ideas with Pradeep Dadha, Founder of Netmeds made him stay in India for the last 11 years.
From his experiences and stories, he talked about the customer experience and why it is more important than anything else. From clicking a random selfie with MS Dhoni just to check the camera quality to MS Dhoni being the Brand ambassador of Netmeds, his story was so inspiring. His talk was full of stories and funny incidents. Two things to take from Bruce are first to Know your value and demand it and second Say so what? more often.
Akash Sureka explaining quantum computing
After that Akash Sureka, the General manager at Icertis talked about quantum computing and its applications. Like ML and AI, quantum computing is the new big thing in the future. It's based on quantum theory and can solve some challenging problems in seconds that would take current supercomputers thousands of years. We are approaching a real physical barrier for technological progress and to solve this quantum computing can be used.
Learn more about Quantum Computing
Kumar Rangarajan Founder of Slanglabs
Kumar Rangarajan, CEO and Founder of Slanglabs explained how we can make technology better so that people who don’t know anything about it can also access it. He introduced us to building voice augmented eXperience in apps. The traditional way of UI can now become voice augmented and that will help our parents to use these apps just using their voice. Speaking out what you want, is significantly faster than navigating buttons and menus and filters. This idea is revolutionary.
Mahaveer Muttha in a fireside chat with Priyam Bose
The fireside chat with Priyam Bose ( Global Head and director, TrueCaller) was about how the mobile-driven market and phone number is a primary identity made TrueCaller cross 150 million daily active users globally. Also, he shared why TrueCaller launched Software Development Kit (SDK) solution for mobile web platforms so that developers can use it in their apps. When asked about how TrueCaller earns money, He stated that the biggest part of the revenue is its premium services to the users. The chat between these two was very insightful.
DevFestPune 2019, JW Marriott Hotel, Pune
Around 2 pm, the half event was done. GDG Pune provided the best food for all the attendees. The management with all the volunteers was great. Meanwhile, In the lunch break, there were different activities around like quizzes, games, and the stalls of GDG partners where they were talking about different possibilities of career. Due to the availability of so many speakers and less time now the event got divided into two tracks. People went accordingly to their interests.
Adnan AM (RedMart) talking about Functional Programming
Adnan AM, Senior Software Engineer at Redmart talked about Functional Programming. A programming paradigm in which we try to bind everything in pure mathematical functions style. It is a declarative type of programming style. Its main focus is on “what to solve” in contrast to an imperative style where the main focus is “how to solve”. He explained how the switch from OOP to FP can lead to a better solution to different problems.
Harsh Dattani (Developer community manager) Google
Harsh Dattani talked about android’s new publishing format Android App Bundle which is an efficient way to build your app. It helps to minimize the challenges including the size of the app, localization, scalability, and compatibility while working on android. He also explained how one can switch to android bundle and build awesome apps.
Bushra Sagir introducing smart jacket ‘Jacquard’
Bushra Sagir introduced new digital experiences into the things you love, wear, and use every day. ‘Jacquard’ a google smart technology that takes ordinary, familiar objects and enhances them with new digital abilities and experiences, while remaining true to their original purpose. By staying connected to your digital world, you can do so much more like play a song by swiping your sleeve. make calls by tapping on your sleeves. This whole new technology by google is just mind-blowing to me.
All diversity or all inclusion — Ketan Kapoor
Ketan Kapoor talked on why we should focus on creating a Universal Design which can be accessed, understood, and used to the greatest extent possible by all people regardless of their age, size, ability or disability. His talk was something we all should think about and initiate building such designs. Its high time for all of us to be sensitive about this topic and take steps accordingly.
Amey Nerkar, a DSC lead from MITAOE, He is like one of us with no special talent but desire to learn, build and use technology for a better purpose. Since his early age, he was involved in innovations and he explained how exploring communities with technology helped him achieve more in life. His work on ‘Audito’ a low-cost hearing device and an educational platform to ensure the proper use of sensory organs by the community is appreciable. I truly feel communities play a major part in our life.
For me, it was one of the best experiences of my life. I learned a lot, got to know about new technology, meet new people, talk to them, and most importantly became a part of a great community. I am so much inspired to make an impact now. In the end, we all got goodies and t-shirts of DevFest19 from the GDG. Thanks to Mahaveer Muttha, Organizer of GDG Pune for providing such opportunities to us. Now I am not gonna miss any chance to come together in meetups and contribute to the community.
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