ZendCon 2011 UnCon

If you were looking at the UnCon at ZendCon and wondering what, if anything, you should do, let me give you a couple of hints.  The UnCon is the place where people who either did not submit  a talk or did not get their talk accepted can sign up for a time to speak and talk on the topic of their choice.  The whole purpose of an UnCon is to let presenters decide what gets presented.  To sign up go to the signs at the bottom of the stairs (which will be up Tuesday morning) and write in your presentation at one of the times.

It’s also a chance for you to get a little practice if you have not spoken before and would like to see what it is like.  We recommend that you have either slides, examples or both.  It’s not “required” that you do, but it definitely helps and it shows that you are treating it seriously.

In addition to full talks there is the opportunity for lightning talks.  These are talks that are just 20 minutes long and are good for showing some short piece of code or talking about a smaller tool that you might be using or have built.

This year we will have several prizes.  We ask attendees to rate talks on Joind.in (follow @zenduncon on Twitter for links) and the list of prizes for top talks are:

  1. A free ticket to PHP Benelux 2012
  2. A free ticket to PHP Northwest
  3. A copy of the official Zend Framework programming guide (two volumes) which will go to the top 3 finishers

“But”,  you might be saying, “I don’t have anything to speak about.”  Bullcrap :-).  There are things that you have done that is unique to your circumstances.  Take a look at the ZendCon schedule and see what is not being talked about in the sessions.  Here’s a horribly incomplete list (in case you were wondering).

  • Chef
  • Capistrano
  • Realistic uses for NFS in production systems
  • Cool bitwise tricks
  • Continuous Integration best practices
  • etc., etc. etc.

If you think you can’t speak you’re probably right, along with most people who speak.  Just be yourself and speak honestly and you will go a long way.  And trust me, picturing people naked does NOT work.

For additional tips, check this link from Toastmasters.

[edit]If you have any questions about the UnCon feel free to contact Michelangelo (@dragonbe) or myself (@kpschrade).  Preferably Michelangelo :-). [/edit]

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