Looking back at Velocity Conference NYC 2015

Last week I attended O’Reilly’s Velocity Conference in New York which featured speakers from around the United States, and the globe to get a sense for what’s hot in DevOps and anything web performance.

If you use industry leading conferences like Velocity to get a sense of where the industry is and what’s ahead, there were a few key themes I picked up on. … 

Becoming The Code Company

At the beginning of 2015 I set a goal to work through the branding of my current agency, Alyte Creative. The main reason behind this was that the business had just turned five years old and the public image and understanding of the brand was no where near where we actually were as a business. In addition to the current, poorly executed brand, the word Alyte has no significance, it’s hard to pronounce and spell.

While we have been fortunate to continue growing steadily (my preference – rather than crazy growth) through word of mouth, our public image (or lack thereof) could be letting us down in potential referrals and the like.

Put simply, we’re a five year old business doing some really big, exciting projects with (some) well known brands throughout Australia, but if anyone was to look at us externally, you’d think we were a localised web design shop selling $1,000 to $5,000 websites.

Below is the process that I went through to both find a partner to work on this and how we arrived at our final destination.


Creating a really clean & simple Intranet with WordPress

I needed a really simple intranet for our internal documentation, stuff that needs to be frequently read and occasionally edited. After trying a few different tools, I think we’ve got a pretty good setup now, and it really has only a few components that I’ll list below.



At the end of Webstock last week, co-organiser Natasha Lampard gave some closing remarks. Tash’s remarks lead me to believe she was planning on resigning or this was to be the last Webstock — thankfully this was not the case.

Instead, Tash told a lovely story of a hotel / bed and breakfast in Japan called Houshi.

Houshi Ryokan was founded around 1,300 years ago and it has always been managed by the same family since then. 
It is the oldest still running family business in the world.

Tash contrasted this lovely story of a business handed down generation to generation for 1,300 years to the current state of so many “web 2.0” / technology companies. Tash suggested the term “exit strategy” should be replaced with “exist strategy”. Funny side note: As I write this, Grammarly thinks I’ve confused exit with exist! … 

Webstock 2015

Webstock 2015 has come and gone. I was able to get over there for a second year in a row and once again, left with my mind ticking over with everything that I absorbed over the two full on days.

For two years in a row now, the weather in Wellington has just been sensational. This is in contrast to the normal weather in Wellington which is wet, cold and windy!

I don’t bother taking lots of notes at Webstock — it’s really too full on, and most of the takeaways for me are abstract and not things like “use program X for task Y”. …