This year’s major Agile conference was held at the Gaylord Texan spa and resort in Dallas Texas. The venue was a large resort completely enclosed in a beautiful atrium dome. The internal motif of classic Texas Alamo style architecture adorned the various restaurant/bars and gift shops.
Hats off to the Agile Alliance for choosing to partner with the Gaylord for its annual event. The service was first-class as was the dining. Breakfast and lunch were catered buffet style by the resort with a delicious selection of gourmet foods. The only two criticisms was the temperature in the conference rooms were on the cold side -perhaps to compensate for the Texas heat that typically exceeded 100 degrees. The second being the odd taste of the tap water – an earthy, rustic taste to those of us used to the water in New York which we favor even over Northern California’s.
The conference sessions were rich with hits such as Bob Sutton’s keynote, Dean Leffingwell’s Enterprise Agile Scaling sessions and Will Evan’s enlightening workshop on Agile UX Design Studio. It also had its share of misses – Agile PMI. Personally, the phase itself invokes an agonizing sense of cognitive dissonance.
Wednesday night’s Rodeo round up was a great opportunity to view the vendor booths and see the latest offerings. Paul Culling of Version One gave us a compelling demo of their latest release over a Smart Board as well as their printable story cards complete with QR code – a simple and obvious concept that one wonders why it’s not standard on all agile tracking tools.
The grand finale of Agile 2012 was a private event held at the resort’s adjacent premier night club – the Glass Cactus. In addition to the consistently delicious cuisine and complimentary cocktails (drink tickets in hand) conference attendees were entertained by Dallas’ local funny man Todd Justice. No relation to wiki speed’s Joe Justice. Working in a few agile references into his already hilarious routine, Justice had us all in an uproar of laughter. The night closed with a live band and dancing into the late hours.
Good job Agile Alliance. We look forward to Agile 2013 in Nashville.