Prairie Dev Con 2022 Takeaways

A woman holding a brown paper bag with the Prairie Dev Con logo on it, seemingly handing it to someone on the other side who is not visible in the photo.

Until I walked through the doors of the Prairie Dev Con in 2022, I did not realize how much I missed it. The talented speakers that come together always bring fresh ideas to my mind and give me pause to think about my own efforts and how I can learn from their experience. Although not a complete list, these ideas the ones that stood out the most from Prairie Dev Con 2022.

API First Design (Joël Hébert)

Joel did a great session about API first design, which was a very dense session, but he delivered the content in a way that was very approachable and allowed me to think of the benefits of doing API first design with tools like and OpenAPI.

It was great seeing the value of these tools, and hearing about the patterns and practices experienced API developers like Joel use to implement consistent and secure APIs.

Developer Velocity Index (AJ Enns)

I went into this session thinking I was going to be fascinated with the subject, but that the concept would apply only to development leads or possibly coders, rather than an architect like me.

I was wrong.

The Developer Velocity Index (DVI), is a way for any team (even if it is a one-person team, like me on my side projects) can help frame up and scope the abstract problem of figuring out how do to deliver more value.

I plan on applying the DVI to my side project adventures, self-development, and my enterprise day-job efforts as soon as possible.

End to End Testing (Dave Paquette and Lavanya Mohan)

Although Dave and Lavanya delivered two completely separate sessions related to testing, the content they delivered worked together in a very interesting way.

Dave demonstrated and discussed Playwright and end-to-end testing framework that resolved or improved the problems we commonly see with end-to-end testing. Lavanya demonstrated how someone should apply proper code management and development techniques when creating test code using a framework, like Playwright.

For me, together they demonstrated why the test recorded features of end-to-end frameworks is not the “best approach” to creating tests, but rather it is only the first step.

I feel that these ideas will be seeping into both my day-job and side projects in the very near future.

Cloud Security (Adam Krieger)

Adam closed the Prairie Dev Con season with his session, and managed to leave me with a lot of ideas and helped me identify gaps that I have been living with as a developer and as a solution architect.

Ensuring that developers are security-aware is something I didn’t realize I have been missing in my own skills, but also should be looking for in the implementation of my solution designs.

A Deal is a Deal (Rod Paddock)

Rod delivered a keynote in both Regina and Winnipeg, and each time I walked away with a positive outlook on my own professional and personal growth, but also with the reminder: A Deal Is A Deal.

Sounds simple enough, but in the past I have frequently found myself regretting decisions or deals I had made with myself or others. But, a deal is a deal, and even if you don’t like it or regret it, you need to take a moment to learn from it and ensure the next deal is one you won’t regret.

TL;DR; / Conclusion

In short, there were a lot of good ideas at Prairie Dev Con 2022. These are the ones that stood out to me the most:

  • Consider API First Design with tools like and OpenAPI (Joël Hébert)
  • The Developer Velocity Index (DVI) is NOT just for developers, but for anyone looking to deliver value (AJ Enns)
  • End-to-End Testing is a thing that requires effort, but has major benefits with the right tools and patterns in practice (Dave Paquette and Lavanya Mohan)
  • Cloud Developers need not should be security-aware and not just depend others (Adam Krieger)
  • A deal is a deal, and if you don’t like it, learn from it so the next one is better (Rod Paddock)

Thanks for playing.

~ DW

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