Today was the first day of Facebook’s flagship developer conference F8. It was the first major developer conference I’ve attended, and as is expected out of Facebook, I’m impressed. Not necessarily by the launches and announcements but rather the event itself.
I was at Fort Mason for over ten hours today and trying to get the best value for my buck. I had some expecations and some goals for the first day, and here’s what I learned from my experience:
Ideas are worthless. It’s all about the execution.
I’m a huge believer in action rather than the thought. I think no idea is original and hiding ideas will do more harm than getting ideas out there. I feel that execution of ideas is more valuable than coming up with the idea. With most of the launches today, Facebook managed to kill at least a few dozen startups (Path with Messenger Business for example), and no one is talking about it because who doesn’t like access to 600M+ users for free.
Values change as you become more public
During their panel, Brian Acton (WhatsApp) and Mike Krieger (Instagram) both said that they started their companies and agreed to be acquired by Facebook because it the company shares their values of “connecting the world”. I don’t think that’s completely accurate. I think they wanted to start working on their respective products because they saw the need and potential of innovation. I think, they got acquired also because the money way good ($19B for WhatsApp and $1B for Instagram).
Developers love API’s
During the same panel, at least two brave souls from the audience went up and asked Brian Acton if WhatsApp would ever have an API (the answer is no). This goes on to prove how useful existing platforms are to developers around the world and how much in demand friendly API’s are. But I can empathize with WhatsApp considering how small their team is, and can understand that they need to prioritize optimizing their core platform over an API.
Facebook wants to dominate my communication
Messenger. Facebook app. Instagram. WhatsApp. Groups. See something common? They all let you express yourself in some way to certain audiences. With today’s launches of Messenger Platform and Messenger Business, Facebook now is quite aggressively trying to get my attention whenever (and however) I want to communicate. Text, photos, videos, audio, VoIP and even extended families of communication.
Deadmau5 is freaking amazing
Facebook knows how to conference. pic.twitter.com/aeKwnS3bjw— Karan Goel (@karangoel) March 26, 2015
I did have high expectations for a Facebook event, but the company far exceeded them. Only Facebook can turn a developer event into a Deadmau5 rave in under half an hour.
Networking is fun, but hard
I met the rockstar. pic.twitter.com/5vTLGOrmhm— Karan Goel (@karangoel) March 25, 2015
I’ve been pushing myself for the last few months to get uncomfortable enough by meeting as many new people as possible. My hopes are that it will pay off in the long term, but worst case, I end up making good friends (which really isn’t the worst case). It takes guts to walk up to a stranger, extend your hand and open your mouth and speak words that don’t creep them out. I didn’t network as much as I wanted to today, but I did nevertheless. Hopefully, tomorrow I get to meet more amazing people and build really strong and meaningful connections.