This week I was at DDD EU 2021 conference. This time was online, but still was a great conference, a lot of interesting topics to learn, a great energy and a "sense of community", which just consolidates that this is a conference I will be returning to every year!

The conference was extremely well organized (kudos to organizers), taking advantage of the fact that we had to do it online this time. It was mostly based on "hands-on workshops", but had several other interesting elements, namely "open spaces". The idea was simple: anyone could propose a topic on a sort of "marketplace", which would then be added to the "agenda" and anyone could just join. This created an extremely dynamic conference: there were certain things arranged beforehand by the conference organizers, however a lot of things were planned "on the fly" - by the participants, based on discussions from some talks, outcomes of workshops discussions, or simply problems some people had and were looking for input from the community. Really great way to make this a vibrant conference!

I was on a few open spaces, and one of the workshops: "QualityStorming" with Michael Plod (https://speakerdeck.com/mploed/quality-storming). Extremely interesting workshop on how to adopt the proven "storming" (visual collaboration) technique to the gathering of "architecture qualities" (or "non-functional requirements"). Michael is always very good at this sort of workshops and this one was no exception: in two hours we went through a "near real experience" and I have to say I learned a lot and will for sure use this technique in the future. Highly recommended.

This time I also had the opportunity to give a "lighting talk" entitled: "Sociotechnical Architecture as Enabler of Product Thinking". This talk sort of develops some of the ideas I have been exploring on Sociotechnical (& Systems) Thinking and Architecture (https://esilva.net/sociotechnical) and how they relate with the Product Thinking. I had a lot of fun preparing this and presenting it. It also triggered very interesting discussions, validating that this is definitely a topic that we need to bring further on our practices. I will be working further on this topic, and see some other people also growing into this area, which is exciting. You can find the presentation bellow (more detailed blog post will follow).

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I will be looking forward to 2022! Hopefully we will all be back in person to my Amsterdam! I however think with the success of this remote event we may be having many other interactions on conferences - or variations of conference... curious to see how this develops.