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7 great software engineering conferences and events

Hack Reactor

7 great software engineering conferences and events

By Brittany Anas for Hack Reactor

Software engineering conferences and coding events are some of the best ways both aspiring and experienced software engineers can stay on top of cutting-edge trends in the field. Whether it’s a multi-day gathering in a new city or a virtual event with a Slack channel that brings attendees together for break-out discussions, the magic of networking and collaboration happens at these meet-ups.

For the last year or so, many organizations canceled or postponed their larger-scale events and conferences or moved them to virtual formats. Now, conferences are reconvening IRL, with some taking a creative hybrid approach by hosting in-person and virtual attendees. Still, through chats and other interactive elements (pet parades, trivia, and yoga breaks!) we’ve learned that virtual gatherings have merit. These dispersed gatherings online can remove the cost barriers of travel while bringing top minds together.

From a well-established software engineering conference that’s convening in Pittsburgh (which boasts a lesser-known tech scene) to joining a virtual event where you can hear from a teacher-turned-software engineer, here’s a guide to the influential software engineering conferences and events that are worth adding to your calendar.

Hack Reactor Live Online: “Transitioning from School Teacher to Software Engineer”

5:30-6:30 p.m. PST on July 28, 2021

More information here

If you’re an aspiring software engineer considering a career change, you’ll want to tune into this live discussion where Jess Wolvington discusses how she transitioned from a career as a third-grade teacher to one as a software engineer. Today, she creates software for big-name companies like CNN, Flywheel Sports, and Mailchimp. In this talk, Wolvington will share what it’s like to be an engineer and how she transferred her skills to this new career in tech. 

To connect with others before the event, you can join the Galvanize Tech Community Slack forum and meet other coders, from rookies to veterans. 

Galvanize and Hack Reactor create and host several events and discussions each week, many of which are online. You can see a calendar here. Other topics include what to expect from Hack Reactor’s Software Engineering Bootcamp and immersive software engineering sessions. 

Black Hat USA in Las Vegas, Nevada

Aug. 4-5, 2021

More information here.

Security software developers can learn about the latest security risks, research, and trends at Black Hat conferences. Leading researchers from around the world share their latest work, discussing topics that range from vulnerabilities on smartphones to critical global infrastructure threats. This year, Black Hat will open with four days of virtual training from July 31-Aug. 3 that are conducted in real-time online. The two-day main conference will be Aug. 4-5 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Software Engineering Immersive Info Session

5:30 – 7 p.m. PST on August 17, 2021

More information here.

Find out what you can expect from a Software Engineering Immersive bootcamp. You'll leave this event with a clear perspective and structured options for beginning your career in this quickly-growing field. Need preparation resources? This session is for you!

Strange Loop in St. Louis, Missouri

Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2021

More information here.

For serious software engineers, talks are code-heavy at this conference that brings together developers and thinkers who are building emerging languages, alternative databases, security, and the web. Talks range from “Exploring Deep Space and Deep Ocean with AI” to “How Live Music is Evolving in a Post-Pandemic World.” For the first time ever, Strange Loop will also provide virtual attendee streaming access for conference tracks, sessions, and keynotes with approximately 50 hours of content.

QCon Plus in San Francisco and New York

Nov. 1-5, 2021 

More information here.

This development conference is for senior software engineers, software architects, and team leaders. For the first time in the conference’s history, there will be optional in-person add-on events in New York and San Francisco. The conference will begin with online sessions, and then there’s an opportunity to connect with speakers and peers at small, in-person events in New York and San Francisco. Early adopters particularly enjoy this conference because it helps them stay ahead of trends and they leave with implementable ideas for their own teams.

International Conference on Software Engineering in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania  

May 21-29, 2022

More information here.

A longstanding conference that began in 1975, ICSE provides a forum for researchers, practitioners, and educators to gather to present and discuss the most recent innovations and trends in the field of software engineering. The 2022 conference is scheduled to happen in Pittsburgh, a former steel city that’s enjoying a tech renaissance. New to the conference this year is an “Idea Matchmaking” process where researchers can bid on abstracts for potential collaboration. The conference also holds a student research competition. 

Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWCD) 


More information here.

An anticipated conference every year, WWCD is Apple’s biggest developer event. The free conference gives insight into the future of iOS, iPadOS, macOS so developers can build cutting-edge games and apps. There are also coding and design challenges that you can take part in during the conference. The 2022 WWCD date is not yet announced. But, the 2021 conference just wrapped in June and you can learn from more than 200 sessions that are posted online. You can also connect with more than 1,000 Apple engineers on the Apple Developer Forums.