Yesterday I flew 4 hours to Ankara, Turkey to give a presentation at the Open Source conference held in the Tobb Etü university for economics and technology. For YDN, this was a very special event as it was the introduction of our new man on the ground in Turkey - Volkan Bicer.
Now it is one day later, two hours after my presentation, and I am sitting in the Ankara Airport to catch my flight to Istanbul from where I'll go back home after another three hour stop-over. Somehow this feels surreal.
The conference revolved all around Open source solutions and what they can do for developers and to drive the IT market in Turkey. Speakers involved people sent by JBOSS, IBM, OpenOffice and Novell and I faced a massive lecture hall filled with around 80 people eager to hear about what Yahoo can bring to the table.
My presentation revolved both around the free offers Yahoo has for developers and introducing Volkan as the first point of call for anything Yahoo/Developer related in Turkey. Judging the first reactions from the audience I gathered that I showed them a lot of useful things new to them and that they are very eager to read more - hence the immediate posting here.
Sadly enough the T-Shirts we got for the students are still held in customs in Istanbul, which means that I had to improvise and created a prize-draw with free copies of my book for the winners. If you are to travel to Istanbul soon and you see customs officers with Yahoo hack T-Shirts, please take photos and upload them on Flickr. Talking of which, Volkan did a great job taking lots of photos of the event and my talk soon available on my Flickr stream.
All in all I had a great time and seeing Volkan immersed in talks with students and professors asking us about the Uni Hack Day program gives me a good feeling about this and we're sure to return sooner or later for a longer period.
I hope the rest of the conference will be as successful and I'll badger Volkan to give details later on. For now, we are very happy with the outcome and that "nobody left the saloon" (as Volkan put it - salon(u) is Turkish for "hall") during our presentation. I tip my hat, mount my winged horse and ride back into the wild wild west of North East London. Maybe I'll get a Borek when I get there.
Yahoo Developer Network