Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Dreamforce 2015 Round-up / Summary

This was my second year attending Salesforce's annual Dreamforce conference in San Francisco. My first was last year.

Again, I focused mostly on the developer side of things which are around the Moscone West building - Home of the Dev Zone

Dev Zone


Using Oculus Rift and Virtual Reality to Visualize Data on Salesforce

Introducing the Welkin Suite IDE for Salesforce

A Salesforce IDE built upon Visual Studio Code.

Custom Folder Structure - The ability to create sub folders within the project to organize components looks to be really useful.

Plus support for code comments.

Apex Enterprise Patterns: Building Strong Foundations

Patterns for:

  • Separation of Concerns + Factory Pattern
  • Service Layer
  • Domain Layer
  • Selector Layer

Parker Harris's True to the Core: What's Next for Our Core Products

Get Ready for a New Kind of Customer Success with Marc Benioff & Special Guests

175,000+ conference attendees. 25,000 of which are developers.

Demo of Thunder, the IoT cloud integrated with the Azure Event Hub for Office 365

Build Reliable Asynchronous Code with Queueable Apex

Apex Interactive Debugger

Fireside Chat with Satya Nadella and Jessi Hempel

A nice perk of becoming a Salesforce MVP this year was reserved setting access to some of the keynotes. In my case I got front row seating to the Satya Nadella keynote. Right in line behind Tony Prophet, who some of you may remember from last years main keynote.

Salesforce Developer Keynote

Introduction To Apex Asynchronous Callout Framework, aka, Continuation

Apex Testing Tips and Tricks - Community Campfire

Generically Call External Classes from Managed Packages

Using Type.forName to get the Type for a classname configured in a custom setting that the managed package can instantiate using .newInstance().

Understanding the Salesforce Architecture: How We Do the Magic We Do

Meet the Developers

Marc Benioff & Parker Harris Q&A

Sessions to catch up on


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I'd sum up the Dreamboat as:

"among the most impressive accommodation you'll hardly even see"

Dreamforce is a pretty full on conference. You can be booked up from breakfast to as late as you want with meetings, sessions, keynotes, and after hours functions. This usually means waking up sometime around 6 am, maybe grabbing a quick breakfast, and then disembarking to the first meeting of the day. Then staggering back in to get some sleep before doing it all again tomorrow (assuming you make it back before midnight).

As far as accommodation goes, I'd have to rate the Dreamboat as among the most impressive I've seen. With multiple swimming pools, a gym, theater, basket ball court, and casino (not operational) all on board, there was no shortage of things to do. If only you can find the time. I don't think I made it to the Constellation Lounge during daylight hours and was surprised to see what it looked like during daylight hours.

Plus the views. Open the curtains before leaving for the morning to catch the sun coming up behind the bay bridge. Then see the silhouette of the Golden Gate bridge as the sun sets. Then the city skyline in the evenings.

Salesforce StackExchange breakfast

It was great to catch up with fellow users of the site prior to the start of the conference. A good way to put faces to names before things get going at the conference.

Random learning's

  • It's hard to take a photo of yourself getting a ride on a Pedicab without getting an ass in the picture. Do have small notes for payment.
  • Don't tweet a picture of Yoshiki unless you want to draw the attention of his fans.
  • You're going to need another bag to bring everything back home.
  • Do stop by the Admin zone for the professional headshots. Try to do it early in the week before the lack of sleep starts to catch up with you.
  • Get your twitter handle and avatar on your badge. I spend all year interacting with people via twitter, then struggle to identify them in real life.
  • AT&T do a 1.5GB nano sim card with 1.5GB of data for $45 USD. Combined with the conference WiFi, it was easily enough to get through and stay connected.
  • You can't give session feedback on sessions held in the DevZone theaters as you can't scan into them like you can with the breakout rooms.
  • If you're a developer, ignore the advice to leave your laptop behind. How are you going to complete the Mini Hacks or try anything out as you go if you don't have your tools on hand?
    My Surface Pro 3 was really useful. I could knock out the mini hacks, take down more complicated notes, do on the spot demos, ... Only catch for me was needing to change my date time settings to PST to connect to the WiFi. Go figure.
  • If you can time it right, drop ship things to the FedEx office at 726 Market St. It is only a quick walk from the conference and you can get a "Hold at FedEx location" when shipping.
  • Got a spare 30 minutes. Make a quick excursion to the Expo in Moscone North.
  • Visit the construction site for the Salesforce tower.
  • To use the pre-purchased BART return ticket you need to print out the receipt to present at the airport information booth. They won't accept a digital version on a screen.

UCSF Benioff Hospital Tour

The hospital has autonomous TUG robots helping with transport tasks around the hospital. I'm surprised these weren't featured in the IoT side of the conference.

See also: