I flew from Melbourne to Los Angeles then from Los Angeles to San Francisco. It was my first time in the United States and things were a bit different from home.
Getting through the passport control at LAX was surprisingly easy. Sitting around for my connecting flight for 4 hours after not being able to sleep on the transpacific flight was not too fun, especially being at LAX.
Luckily I had my trusty iPhone and headphones to keep me company.
The conference started on Monday 11 June, with the very famous and long anticipated keynote speech. It was great to see people I had only read about present all the new goodies like the retina Macbook Pro, OS X Mountain Lion and ofcourse, iOS 6. The new maps looked really cool and so did the new additions to Siri, but all of the really cool stuff for me (being a developer and a bit of a nerd) were announced at the Developer Tools kickoff. Unfortunately, because of non-disclosure agreements, you'll have to wait until our next app for iOS 6 to see some of that in action.
The rest of the conference was great. Everyday, from Monday to Friday, was filled with learning lots of new things about iOS development, meeting new people and fun. Every presenter that I saw was as confident and practiced as Steve Jobs. Every presentation was detailed and enlightening. The other developers there were all ready to listen to what I had to say and help me out if I needed.
I also spent a fair bit of time down at Blue Bottle, one of the only places I found that does coffee as good as Melbourne.
One great highlight of the trip happened by chance. As I was leaving a party with some people I had met, our group split in two and I managed to find myself at the offices of Github. Github are one of the most popular companies among iOS developers because they provide a great product, especially for open source software. They also have one of the coolest offices I've ever seen, with a hardware hacking room, really cool furniture, a bar and other over the top things you would expect from a California startup. Hanging out there was great.
Overall, I had a great trip and learned a lot. San Francisco is a great town and the conference was definitely worth going to. Hopefully I'll get to go again next year!
Joshua Spry, Mobile Platform Developer