I was fortunate to be able to attend JSConf EU in 2011. This turned out to be a life altering event. Going there I expected to see some nice talks and get drunk in the awesome city of Berlin. While I did both of those things, what happened in the can going to Berlin airport was not expected. I got on board to organise a JSconf-style conference in Oslo: The Web Rebels Conference. Four conferences later we are now planning our 5th(!) and we got an email from Jan L which made me reflect on how attending and hosting a JSConf event has affected me and my life. In short: it has made me a better person.
This is not some emotional statement based on nostalgia or wanting to suck up to the people in the community. It’s the truth and here’s how I became a better person.
I was there when Chris Williams gave his incredible talk An End To Negativity at JSConf EU 2011. Attending the talk and repeating the phrase: “What would I do if I knew, I could not fail?” changed something in me. Coming home from Berlin and seeing my kid I totally got what Chris was talking about in his talk. Since that day I became much braver and took on challenges I’d otherwise give a pass. It helped shape the coming years of my professional career.
Chris, you’ve made a huge difference in my life and I wish you and your family all the best. Now it’s up to the rest of us to follow your lead.