Last month I had a pleasure to visit China and attend QCon conference in Shanghai.
I gave a talk about building large scale web apps with TypeScript where I updated my talk from last year to TypeScript 2.0, I showed TypeScript boilerplate project created by Remo Jansen, and using TypeScript with Aurelia Framework.
I had a great turnout. Room overflow with over 150 people. I also got a great feedback. People could vote green(awesome), yellow(ok), red(bad), and I received 128 green, only 10 yellow and 1 red, which gives over 92% extremely satisfied attendees.
QCon has the best of the best from the industry. In Shanghai I met Jaime Levy (famous UX strategist from LA), Kinshuk Mishra (Director of Engineering at Spotify), Pete Soderling (successful entrepreneur from New York and Silicon Valley, founder of Hakka Labs & DataEngConf), Sid Anand (former Cloud Data Architect at Netflix who implemented Netflix migration to the cloud that Adrian Cockcroft later on told the World about, former Tech Lead at LinkedIn where he implemented typeahead search, currently Data Architect at Agari – company that provides fraud detection services), Wesley Reisz (Solutions Architect at HP and University Professor), and Igor Marvić (Software Engineer at Spotify).
China is very interesting place for developers, especially because of its scale. They have over 700 million Internet users! One developer from alibaba.com – largest online store in China – told me that during Singles’ Day (Guanggun Jie), which is equivalent of Black Friday in USA, they had over 400 million customers online at the same time. This is more than entire population of the United States (~325 million). They also sold more than $1 billion in merchandise in first 8 minutes! This is SCALE!
While I was in China I was using WeChat (their Facebook equivalent). People don’t use Facebook and twitter, as they are blocked by China Firewall. You can workaround it using VPN, but sometimes it works very slow, or not at all. Thus, it is much easier to just use WeChat. When I am in USA I use Facebook, messenger and twitter everyday. However, I noticed that on my iPhone 5S, WeChat works much better than all mentioned apps. It doesn’t crash, it’s fast, and it has many cool features. Want to add somebody to friends? Just scan they QRCode. You can also shake your phone, and WeChat will try to find closest person who is also shaking their phone, and show on your phone their profile, and on their phone your profile.
Besides the conference, which was very well organized, I was very impressed by how modern the city of Shanghai is. The skyline looks almost like New York City! Shanghai Tower (2,073 ft / 632 m) is the second tallest building in the World. Shanghai World Financial Center (1,614 ft / 492 m) is number 9 on the same list, which contains only 1 American building – One World Trade Center (number 6 – 1,776 ft / 541 m).
It was a great journey, and all Chinese people were very nice for me. I look forward to come back to China in near future!