If you are a C++ programmer, I encourage you to attend the cppcon, one of the largest gatherings of the C++ community. The sessions range from the cutting edge of C++ to how to do the old C++ better. If you are using C++ to build games, write compilers or develop performance sensitive applications, you will find something useful in the conference. It doesn’t matter if you are using pre-modern C++ or are already in the modern C++ land or are thinking of pushing your team to use the modern C++ effectively, you should attend in any case.
I wanted to attend cppcon since a long time. But, it’s an expensive conference and I am yet to work at a company which provides travel grants for conference attendance. cppcon is one of the nicer conferences that provides financial support to their speakers and volunteers. Hence, I had only two options – either speak at cppcon or volunteer at cppcon. Volunteering wasn’t an option for me since I couldn’t commit the required number of days, I decided to try my luck at speaking.
I submitted three proposals out of which one got selected. And that’s how I landed my first public speaking opportunity and attended the cppcon for the first time.
I had apprehensions about my experience at the conference, but I had a wonderful time. The people I interacted with were genuinely good people. The conference saw a healthy mix of junior and senior programmers which was refreshing. A good part of the community is trying to make the C++ community more inclusive and diverse and they are willing to hear what others have to say.
Overall it was a great experience and I’d certainly like to attend it next year too. And I hope to see more people of colour, more women and more people from the LGBTQ community next year at the conference. I also hope, the conference becomes a more welcoming place for all the attendees next year.
Here’s a list of a few helpful links if you wish to attend cppcon
- The conference website itself is a pretty good place to start.
- Look for the #include <C++> sponsorships if you need financial assistance for attending the conference.
- Look for the Call for Submissions for the conference around March in 2020 and submit multiple if you have multiple ideas.
- Look for Call for Volunteers at the conference website.
- Follow cppcon on twitter.
The above are what I did. You can additionally take part on Reddit or join the Slack channel. And, there are many more C++ conferences. Find something near where you live and make a plan to attend the next one.