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Back from Nokia World

I'm back now in the Oslo office after attending Nokia World 2010 and its Nokia Developer Summit side-event. Well, technically the event ended on Wednesday, but yesterday I woke up in London, had lunch in Paris and went to bed in Oslo, so I was quite exhausted to write this blog yesterday.

The disclaimer is that even though I consider myself a developer at heart, I actually attended as part of the overhead and spent most of my time going in and out of meetings with customers, partners and developers interested in learning more about Qt and influence its roadmap.

The overall impression was that it's a huge event, with everything at its best. The limit of 3000 attendees was reached before the event even started. It was apparently all about Connecting People (and hey, even Apple thinks that it's important), but "connecting people to the internet" wasn't working all that great. Then again, there were 3000 people, most of whom were doing live-blogging and tweeting from the venue. And I dare say some were downloading the 500-900 MB of the Nokia Qt SDK...

The event was all about letting people see the latest solutions and devices and have first-hand experience, like with the C6, C7, E7 and N8. Apparently, Nokia Marketing has taken a cue from Star Trek and decided that Warp 10 should not be reached, so there are no devices with a "10" numbering. I have played with the N8 myself and I can say that Symbian^3 is a much welcome improvement from previous versions. It's working very well, fluidly, the interaction much improved, with the familiarity of the interface for those who like continuity. (I guess that if you want to see a break, you need to wait for MeeGo)

Even though this was my first Nokia World, it was my second Developer Summit. Last year, I had the opportunity to present at the event held in Monaco. The change from last year is remarkable. Last year, we heard a lot about web runtime and on-Maps applications and business opportunities, with some Qt on the side. We had then three presentations about the then-just-released Qt 4.5 and Creator 1.0. This year, however, the message was clear: Qt, Qt, Qt (but, of course, we have been singing this strategy for some time). This even spilled onto the main Nokia World event, with Qt featuring in the keynotes. And everyone was pronouncing Qt correctly! (they must have been forced to watch the video)

I had an epiphany about the significance of this when in the Speaker's Orientation session, someone else was explaining our Qt strategy to me :-)

On the developer side of the event, it wasn't all about the devices, but all about the technology. We presented Qt, Qt Mobility, the Nokia Qt SDK, we talked about hybrid applications, graphics and the "wow" effect, and we showed how easy it was to do all of that with Qt. My session was quite well-attended, with around 120 people out of 160 seats available. The session just before mine, on the Nokia Qt SDK, by Karsten Homann and Thomas Strehl, had a bit more people (close to capacity). I didn't have many questions asked because I used all my session time, and apparently because Forum Nokia decided to give away N8s to people who attended my presentation (but not for me!).

In all, a good dose of "Qt Everywhere".

The next event in our agenda is now Qt Developer Days 2010, in Munich (Oct 11-13) and in San Francisco (Nov 1-3), an event packed with Qt-related sessions, much more in-depth than what we could give at NDS. It's also the perfect opportunity to talk to our engineers, find out why some decisions were made, clear up any doubts you may have, or learn from other attendees how they're using Qt. See you there!

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