J On The Beach 2018, Surviving the sabotage!

Hi! I am José Antonio, this year I have proudly been part of the team of organizers of J On The Beach, an international event for developers and DevOps around Big Data technologies that recently took place in Málaga (Spain) for third year in a row.


JOTB was born with the purpose of being a fun conference to learn and share the latest experiences, tips related to Big Data technologies and to make the rest of the world aware of the interesting developments taking place in the South of Spain and attract talent to the area.


Moreover, this year we were committed to achieve an extra purpose, embracing diversity raising the number of speakers from 27% to 39% on the congress and we’ll continue making all our efforts to increase that number.


The aim of this post is to share my experience on this edition, and because of my role in marketing I can’t help to start by showing you some numbers, so here I go!


  • 400 attendees from 26 countries 🌎

  • 56 speakers among talks, workshops and hackathon

  • 15 female speakers

  • 29 job offers published

  • 25 volunteers

  • 15 sponsors

  • 8 workshops

  • 2 heavy machinery helping for acoustic atmosphere 🔇

  • 0 infractions of the Code Of Conduct, that’s great!


What our speakers said about the event


Needless to say, most of our speakers commented on how delighted they were to spend time in Málaga, exploring the beautiful city and surroundings. Their feedback was also extremely positive about the event and the organization.


Had a great time speaking at the J on the Beach conference. Thank you @JOTB2018 for inviting. It was a pleasure meeting developers from Málaga and rest of the world.

— Venkat Subramaniam (@venkat_s) 24 de mayo de 2018

Arrived @JOTB2018, and no surprise, it's on a beach! 🏖️ pic.twitter.com/B7yiK4gu6d

— Markus Tacker 🇳🇴 (@coderbyheart) 24 de mayo de 2018


From individual conversations with them, they say that J On The Beach is perfect to have closer contact with the audience and it is easier to do networking than similar conferences with thousands of attendees (actually I heard the same thing from many of our attendees)

We hope to see them again back on JOTB 2019.


Amazing few days of cycling in Andalusia - lovely way to round off our @JOTB2018 trip! #jotb2018 pic.twitter.com/N1wfiC6yCg

— Liz Rice (@lizrice) May 28, 2018


What our attendees said about the event


Despite being the year with the highest multiculturalism and gathered know-how of the three editions up to now, from the organization of JOTB we regret all the inconveniences caused by the venue before and during the execution of the event such as construction works, noise, vibrations and multiple limitations not dealt in advance. Unfortunately, they wasn’t able to recognize the worth of embracing an international event and the direct added value that this brings to our region and our professionals.


However, following the event, we sent a survey to all of the attendees and we are delighted to see that the general tone has been putting themselves into the organizers shoes, so we are really thankful.


On the other hand, we have been taking note of all your suggestions for the next year (more water, more water 😅) and we will take this experience and turn it into a new opportunity in order to get the greatest Big Data event that you deserve.


And now find below more numbers (I love it 😜) with the results of the survey:

(General event ratings (1 to 10 with 10 being most positive response))


Overall, how satisfied were you with the event?   7.1

How would you rate the venue? 7.3

How would you rate the staff? 9.1

How would you rate the food? 7.8

How likely is it that you would recommend it to a friend or colleague? 7.6

How well did the event meet your expectations?(0 to 4 with 4 being most positive response) : 3


One important change, has been the food, most of you have rated as excellent this year food, maybe too fancy some people said.


As for speakers and talk topics, below are the Top 4 ranking talks in regards to the feedback received:

  1. Joe Armstrong: Good ideas that we forgot.
  2. Venkat Subramaniam: Exploring Java 9
  3. Mario Fusco: Lazy Java
  4. Jonas Boner: Designing Events-first Microservices


Besides these talks we also need to point out the high marks of the Yes We Tech Meetup, with Gloria Passarello, Victoria Caparrós and Marta Gómez.


And we end up the day with a family photo with all attendees to the @yeswetech_ meetup! pic.twitter.com/XG022jWUMt

— J On The Beach (@JOTB2018) May 24, 2018


Thank you also for suggesting some new speakers  for the 2019 line-up, such us Trisha Gee, Heinz Kabutz or Dharma Shukla amoung many others.


In conclusion, we are very proud of the job done and extremely happy to receive lots of great feedback in the comments provided, including:


‘You guys did an awesome work. We're so lucky to have this event here in Málaga. I hope you keep doing this many more years. Congratulations!!’,

‘Having an event like JOTB in Malaga is great! Thanks for making it possible once more!’

‘Thanks to everyone making this an awesome place to meet and enjoy. I will definitely come back.’


We learn a lot from your feedback it helps us to improve and to know where to focus. Be assured that we have taken note of all, we are looking forward to seeing you again on 2019.    


Till them, let me wait on the beach 😎🌴


P.S: BTW, did you realize that we have some unicorns between us? 🦄


The only developer event with real unicorns is @JOTB2018 🦄 pic.twitter.com/xOYKZnbPa5

— J On The Beach (@JOTB2018) May 24, 2018