The pre Conference sprint is somewhat of a tradition started way back at FLOW3 Experience. I also think it’s nice to go to the conference location for more than just the conference, BUT I feel more and more that there is a better way to spent our time and energy.
I would like to move the sprint AFTER the conference, so starting totally chill from Sunday (or even kick off Saturday evening) and then until mid week or something. I would see the following benefits:
Sprint participants don’t need to divide attention between preparing talks and actually participating in the sprint activities. (I feel that IF we are together we gain much more from working together and not sitting in a corner and creating slides)
The conference participants get fresh and well slept speakers (depending on your home conditions ofc )
the sprint is not “split apart” by the workshop for those involved in the workshop
Obviously there are drawbacks:
Can’t use the sprint to dev something to show at conference (I feel this kind of last minute things should be avoided anyways?)
Sunday becomes part of the sprint (problem?)
Not much chance for pre conf alignment discussions etc. if needed.
In the end for me the pros are bigger than the cons.
I really would like to try that out for the same reasons @christianm mentioned. Although I promised every time to have my talk completely prepared before the sprint, it never worked out. And especially this year I felt rather exhausted after a week of sprinting.
For having the Sunday in the sprint - wouldn’t be that a great opportunity to do a team (+sprinters ) event there? Doesn’t need to be something big - hiking together in the Saxon Switzerland for example would be nice for team building.
I am generally open to meeting after the con; but to me there is one big benefit in meeting beforehand: We (as Neos Team) are really going “well-aligned” to the conference; and I believe this is truly important.
Suggestion: When the conference is Friday/Saturday, let’s meet on Wednesday before; so we can sync ourselves on Wednesday/Thursday – and then after the conference we could do the sprint.
I am really curious how this would work out; as usually after the con I am really tired and need some sleep A hike etc sounds like a good idea on Sunday. IMHO we can also invite interested people from the con there.
The longer I think about the idea, the more I want to try it out.
I agree with @sebastian that the alignment beforehand is important to send a consistent message at the Conference - but maybe we can achieve that at a (February/) March sprint, which is not too far away from the conference.
Sleeping in on Sunday to digest the social event and then doing something together sounds great to me
I actually don’t like the idea, but since I’m not really “sprinting” - or I’m sprinting the week before anyways - I don’t really think I can judge. But I will tell you my reservation anyways
I totally see the benefits and absolutely agree.
BUT my concerns are:
My biggest concern doesn’t seen important, but to me it is I guess: I’d miss the dramaturgy - I think it’s really nice to spend the week together, get comfortable again and then “climax” with the conference. And then go home, have a nice sunday sleep and family time.
the “syncing” one/two days before could work, but I could imagine that some companies wouldn’t welcome it if their people miss 1,5 weeks of work… AND as a result pay for 1,5 weeks for a hotel or else
@tobias I don’t know if I got your comment with the social event wrong, but I wouldn’t have the Social Event on Saturday (!). Most people leave after the second conference day (sprinters are maybe 15% of the conference crowd), even if there is an evening event. And I think that would be really sad.
My concern is that, in practice, I will spend the week before the conference working on the talks and will, by Saturday, be so exhausted and looking forward to sleep, that I wouldn’t be very efficient the week after. So, if it wasn’t for the travel expenses, I’d rather completely decouple the “sprints” from the conference and only meet for one day before the conference for a team warm-up. To me, the conference is kind of the peak of all efforts during the year, and when that is reached, I really need time to recover.
So, how about shortening the “sprint” to 1-2 days, and always focus on vision / warmup. We could do a retro, could do some fun event so everyone catches up with the spirit. But no serious coding or trying to get a release done. And then have sprints independently from the conference.
the event is getting nearer and as far as I can see, we didn’t announce a date yet for the sprint.
At least we voted for a sprint after the conference, but without the support of Sandstorm / locals in Dresden it will not happen (that way).
After being asked by my colleagues who want to attend the sprint and because I really need to start organizing childcare for the one or the other week, it would be great to get some certainty about the date and if it is actually happening.
I don’t remember anymore where we did the decision (either here or on slack), but we will definitely do a conference sprint in the week AFTER the Neos Conference, so from May 13 to May 17 at our sandstorm conference location.
We will also soon announce it with a news posting and create a doodle