MY EXPERIENCE AT GOOGLE I/O 19

Disclaimer: Writing isn’t my thing but I felt like I needed to give it a shot. I have written this article to give a glimpse of I/O 19 to those who didn’t make it to Shoreline Amphitheater or stream the event online.

“I’m Jillo Mercy, a student at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology(JKUAT) pursuing an undergraduate degree in Computer Science and a master trainer at Youth for Technology Foundation.

I have been part of the Google Developers Training programs for two years now and I have served as a Google Developer Group(GDG) lead,a Developer Student Club(DSC) lead for the JKUAT chapter and an organizer of Women Techmakers(WTM) Nairobi.

To learn more about the communities check out: DSC , GDG and WTM

Besides my love for community, I’m passionate about technology and committed to learning in order to teach my fellow colleagues about the various concepts needed to improve their programming and problem solving abilities.”

Follow me on twitter: @jillodidah

I received an email in February asking interested DSC global leads to fill a form expressing their interest to attend Google I/O 19. I filled out the form,answered a few questions about my experience as a tech community lead and expectations from the event….submitted it and forgot about it.

A month later….I received an email confirming that I was amongst the few applicants who would be attending the event to represent other DSC leads from Sub-Saharan Africa,India and Indonesia. The email read….“You were selected based on multiple factors. We scored based on: technical skills, leadership, specific stories you shared, open source contributions, the level of impact you have had in your communities through hosting hands on workshops for students and building solutions for your community and plans for how you will bring back what you learned at I/O to your communities and cities back home.”

From left Solomon(Google Developer Training Manager SSA), Saadat Aliyu(Nigeria), Harjot Singh(South Africa), Jillo Mercy(Kenya),David Asem(Ghana) and Wayne Gakuo(Ghana)

DSC GLOBAL SUMMIT

It was a refreshing moment of knowledge sharing and networking with other leads and Googlers from Sub-Saharan Africa(SSA),India and Indonesia during the summit which was held in Sunnyvale.

I had an opportunity to speak during the lighting talks on Community Syntax and I got great feedback….pssssssssssh…am an awesome public speaker…it’s inborn but I enhanced it by attending a public speaking workshop by Katharina Lindenthal(Google Developer Relations) a few months ago during a WTM Nairobi session.

After the summit we got to interact with Google Africa scholars who were also around to attend I/O.

DSC Leads(SSA,India,Indonesia) and Google Africa Scholars

WOMEN TECHMAKERS DINNER

Google’s Women Techmakers program provides visibility, community, and resources for women in technology.

Every year, WTM increases the participation of women at Google I/O. Women network the night before I/O at the annual Women Techmakers dinner.

GOOGLE I/O 2019

Google I/O is an annual developer conference held by Google in Mountain View, California.I/O was inaugurated in 2008 and it stands for input/output, as well as the slogan “Innovation in the Open”. General admission tickets cost $1,150 while the academic pricing is $375.

Google I/O 19 was great with over 7000 developers attending the main event at Shoreline Amphitheater. The 3 days(7th-9th May) were packed with different sessions: code-labs(Ready-to-code kiosks where you learn about the latest Google technologies via self-paced tutorials with Google staff around for helpful advice and to provide direction when you get stuck),office hours and app reviews(Gives developers a chance to meet one-on-one with Google experts to ask technical questions and receive advice and tips on specific app-related projects),sandboxes(dedicated spaces to explore,learn and play with Google’s latest products and platforms via interactive demos and physical installations),community lounge,after dark and a concert(Two evenings with plenty of food,drinks and fun…the after-party was hosted by The Flaming Lips.)

The main topics included: Accessibility,Ads,IoT,Android,Location/maps,Assistant,Misc,Augmented Reality,Machine learning/Artificial Intelligence,Chrome OS,Open Source,Cloud,Payments,Design,Search,Firebase,Web,Flutter and Gaming.

Major announcements from the Google Keynote and Developer Keynote:

  • Android Q Beta 3
  • Pixel 3a and 3a XL
  • Flutter on web
  • Google Lens
  • Google Firebase
  • AR walking directions in Google Maps
  • Offline, streamlined Google Assistant
  • Android driving mode
  • Kotlin-First Development
  • Google Home devices renamed to Nest
  • Android Q live captioning
  • Project Mainline (streamlined OS update process on Android Q)
  • Duplex web API

Inspirational/Keynote Sessions:

  • Michio Kaku on The Future of Humanity (video)
  • On Creativity and Technology, with Legendary Animator Glen Keane (video)
  • An Unconventional Look at the Future of Technology with Baratunde Thurston (video)

Android:

  • What’s New in Android (video)
  • What’s New with Android for Cars (video)
  • Understand Kotlin Coroutines on Android (video)
  • Android Developers Blog Post on their announcements (post)

Gaming:

  • What’s New in Gaming at Google (video)
  • Stadia Streaming Tech: A Deep Dive (video)
  • Large Scale Multiplayer Gaming with Open Source (video)

Web:

  • What’s New with Chrome and the Web (video)
  • What’s New in Angular (video)
  • Rapidly Building Better Web Experiences with AMP (video)

Flutter:

  • Beyond Mobile: Building Flutter Apps for iOS, Android, Chrome OS, and Web (video)
  • Beyond Mobile: Material Design, Adaptable UIs, and Flutter (video)
  • Dart: Productive, Fast, Multi-Platform — Pick 3 (video)
  • Google Developers Blog Post on Flutter’s announcements (post)

Machine Learning:

  • Getting Started with TensorFlow 2.0 (video)
  • Live Coding A Machine Learning Model from Scratch (video)
  • Federated Learning: Machine Learning on Decentralized Data (video)
  • Google Developers Blog Post on New ML Kit features (post)

Google Assistant:

  • Intro to the Google Assistant: Build Your First Action (video)
  • Voice and Visual: How to Build Actions for Smart Displays and More Devices (video)
  • Extend Your Android App to the Google Assistant (video)
  • Google Developers Blog Post on Actions on Google (post)

AR/VR:

  • What’s new in ARCore (video)
  • Developing the First AR Experience for Google Maps (video)
  • AR as a Feature: How to Supercharge Products Using Augmented Reality (video)
  • Google Developers Blog Post on Updates to ARCore (post)

Cloud & Firebase:

  • What’s New in Firebase (video)
  • Zero to App: Live coding a Cross-Platform App on Firebase (video)
  • Securing Your Apps and User Data with Google Cloud (video)
  • Firebase Blog Post on their announcements (post)

For more info,the following links will be useful:

GOOGLE KEYNOTE

DEVELOPER KEYNOTE

COMMUNITY LOUNGE

We had a Developer Student Club(DSC) meetup at the Community lounge and got to meet and interact with Adam the Vice president for Google Developer Relations.

We also had a chance to build awareness around DSC and spread the word to students and people who work with students about DSC Lead applications.

Things you can do to make today better …

Watch this inspiring story of DSC students in Indonesia building solutions for their community → https://goo.gl/FBVBVn

Apply to be a #DeveloperStudentClubs lead yourself! Deadline approaching soon → http://g.co/dev/dsc

Watch videos from previous DSC Summits: DSC SSA Summit 2018,DSC India Summit 2018 and DSC Indonesia Summit 2018

Yaaaaaaaay….Google devs featured us on their instagram page

CONCLUSION

All that I can say is that this year’s Google I/O was great.It was inspiring to see people come from different countries across the globe to learn and connect. I got a chance to meet a couple of new developers and reconnect with amazing friends I had met at different tech summits. I’m proud of all the community people I get to meet with passion and enthusiasm in tech to solve problems.

I enjoyed the breakout sessions,talks and demos. Having experts at hand to talk with about different technologies was amazing

I was also thrilled to visit the Googleplex and epic places in California.

I would like to thank the Google Developer Relations Team @Erica @Solomon @ Komal and the Google Developer Ecosystems Community Managers @ Aniedi @Vivian @Lai @ John for their support and great opportunities during my journey as a tech community lead to empower our communities through tech.

DSC Sub-Saharan Africa

Tech savvy, passionate about developer communities, innovations and people’s welfare. Loves travelling,baking, dancing(Latin),writing and recreational reading.