Skip to main content Skip to footer

THAT Conference 2023 Wrap-Up

With GrapeCity, I was able to attend THAT Conference in the Wisconsin Dells for the first time. The conference features keynotes and presentations from many different industry-leading organizations (including us!) under a “summer camp” themed backdrop. Unfortunately, due to flight issues, I missed the first day and a half of the event. Nevertheless, I still wanted to share the overall experience, for those who may be curious about attending or have already attended.

THAT Conference 2023

A Presentation from Hunter

Apart from setting our booth up, my co-worker Hunter gave his presentation on the differences of .NET frameworks, and what ones might be right for certain use cases. Overall, it was a great presentation that had much positive feedback from attendees who mentioned it at our booth.

THAT Conference 2023 - Hunter's Presentation

THAT Conference 2023: Extra-Curricular Activities 

After that, I finally made it to the convention to help wind things down at our booth. By the time I got to the conference floor, it was dinner time; walking tacos were on the menu. After catching some of the later crowd, we made our way back to our rooms. Many people from the conference held various activities and games after it was time for the booths to wrap up – things like cornhole, solitaire competitions, and more! I did not have a chance to swing by, as I was pretty exhausted at that point, but I will be sure to get there next time!

THAT Conference 2023 Booth

This being my first time at THAT, I was very unaware of the scale – for a newcomer, it is certainly a larger conference! However, I would say it is a good place to start out for those newer to these types of things. The more casual setting really helps in this regard, as well as the many open presentations and such that you can attend. I felt that there was a healthy diversity in terms of experience and general background.

Day 2 and the Final Keynote

The next day, I was truly able to see just what THAT has to offer; there were keynotes and presentations aplenty, as well as these small tables you could use to sporadically host a discussion about almost anything! I think it works out great, because it helps you meet like-minded people or those who are interested about similar topics. At the end of the day, attendees got reins of the entire indoor section of the waterpark. I wish all conferences had this!

The final keynote was probably the largest presentation I was able to attend. James Q Quick talked largely about AI, where it is at now, and what it means for the future of developers. I think it was a good topic to bring up at the end; many people in all different industries have felt some level of threat from the presence of AI, in that it may take over their own jobs. It is a valid fear, but while old jobs may be phased out, AI will also bring new jobs. James has optimism for the future of AI – the technology is not at the point where it can fully replace mass amounts of jobs just yet, nor can it replace many roles that do require a living human being. Just like with previous technological advancements, the boundaries of our limits will seemingly increase, and we will be able to build on a scale we have not seen before.

Tye's Closing Remarks

Even though I did miss a good portion of the event initially, I am happy I was at least able to make it for the second half! It was great to be around so many talented people. Before closing off, I just wanted to say thanks to the THAT Conference coordinators for having us and giving us this opportunity to meet everyone. I hope I can make it to the next one!

comments powered by Disqus