This year I was part of the advisory board for the RIA track of CF.Objective(). I was also invited to speak. For the record, I didn’t submit or vote for my session. :) Even though it must have become a little difficult to manage all the people in the board (3 members per track), it allowed for democratic voting of topics and wider variety. It was pretty amazing to see how people’s interests lined up.
Overall, they had a good mix of topics, mostly advanced, which is a very good thing. From my experience at 360|Flex, people love in-depth topics. I believe CF.Objective gets the brightest CF audience, so it does make sense to have mostly advanced topics.
From the speaker perspective, I think CF.Objective is one of the best conferences. They pay for speakers hotel rooms and even for the shuttle from the airport. This is a small gesture that really relieves the speakers of the burden of finding the correct transportation. You just go to Super Shuttle’s desk and ask for your ticket. Minutes later you are routed to the right hotel without having to even find the address.
The hotel is very good, and they even serve organic eggs for breakfast! It has a good bar where you can actually have conversations since it is not loud. The hotel is located in Downtown Minneapolis instead of some isolated location, so you can always walk to get anything you need or find good restaurants all around. The food they served at the conference was great, and they had fulfilling vegan options. Other conferences I've been to, their version of a vegetarian option is - if they actually have one - 3 pieces of lettuce on a wrap.
During the Bird of a Feather sessions they had a Pecha Kucha, which was pretty fun and interesting. I have to say that I was pretty surprised by some of the speakers, particularly Ben Nadel and Anthony Israel-Davis. I wish I could find the videos people recorded.
Overall, it was a great conference and I was very happy to see a lot of friendly faces I only get to see once a year.