After oversleeping for the last two years, I finally got a chance to attend Charlotte's (third) annual BarCamp event.
BarCamp is an "un-conference", where typical conference layouts are discarded for a more attendee-based approach that allows anyone at the conference to pitch an idea they would like to talk about, then have everyone vote on the topics that interest them most. The pitches with the most votes get to present.
I admit I was a little concerned about the event as from what I had gathered, the topics were more focused on social media and other aspects of technology that I was not hugely interested in. To my pleasant surprise, nearly the opposite was true. My extra-early Saturday morning (we're talking 8:30am here) was rewarded by having a mess (southern for "a lot") of tech-related talks to choose from, ranging from Git version control to iPhone development.
The first talk I attended was given by Jeremy Olson about his iPhone app, Grades. It was more of a marketing talk about how to handle your product post-development, with a lot of insights that I don't believe I would have otherwise learned without going through the process myself.
Afterward, I had a chance to hear Matt Henry, a member of the Yahoo! Mobile development team. He offered some really nice (and scary) insights for mobile development.
Following an awesome lunch provided by Bojangles, Phat Burrito and Penguin, the crowd convened again for a second round of pitches.
Following the BarCamp was a free after-party hosted by Lightbulb Coworking.
I definitely recommend you try to catch the next BarCamp event, as they are very well organized, informative, fun and free! I will post again as soon as I learn when the next event is scheduled.