Several of my colleagues at StrongLoop spoke at Node.js Interactive 2015 last week. The sole platinum sponsor was IBM, which StrongLoop joined in September. This was similar to the support both companies provided at Node Summit US in February of 2015, during which StrongLoop was a gold sponsor and IBM was platinum. We are doing a big push in the US this year, but we are also tapping into the international Node.js community as well. One of our co-founders, Bert Belder, delivered a keynote address at Node.js Conference Italy in October. StrongLoop participated in NodeFest Tokyo 2015 in November. In this post, I’d like to talk about that and share what’s happening in Japan.
400 seats sold out in one day
Our co-founder Issac Roth spoke at NodeFest Tokyo last year. The organizer said that it took them one week to sell 300 seats last year, but this year 400 tickets sold out in one day. This year they needed eight sponsors, and ended up with 16. (They don’t have metallic ranks for this event, though the sponsor fee is $1,600 USD).
While Node.js is hot, the heat at NodeFest was more than El Niño can bring. Air conditioning systems were turned on—a rarity in Tokyo in November—and I was able to keep cool thanks to the one of the short-sleeved StrongLoop T-shirts I brought as marketing swag. In the end, one of the projectors melted down.
Every sponsor was given three minutes to speak, and I told the audience that the StrongLoop and IBM announcement from September had generated hundreds of tweets. All were positive or neutral, with no negative commentary. Many thought that this was a sign of Node.js going mainstream, of which we all should be proud.
What do we do as Node.js is going to enterprises?
As a tradition, a few speakers were invited from overseas. Usually from the US, more specifically Silicon Valley. This year was not an exception. To help guide the discussions, the organizers implemented a “voting” session. Everybody was given Post-It and requested to write a paragraph about Node.js, the good, the bad, and questions (or spears) for the experts, and we all discussed from the top vote. One of the most popular questions was about how to advance to the next level of Node.js development. The current challenge is that there are many posts for novice Node.js developers and for experts on the Internet, but very little in between. Semi-consensus presented by the experts was “Find expert friends and work with them and learn from them.” This simple yet genius answer reminded me why I admire Node core engineers.
Is that the only path? As a StrongLooper, I would be remiss if I did not suggest learning LoopBack and StrongLoop API Gateway. This can allow you to quickly apply what you earned about Node.js and make a big difference as Node.js goes to enterprises. StrongLoop can be a great compass for your journey.