I'd like to go to a conference once a year, where I hear from people who are developing apps in other environments, and have them explain the significance of their work, relying on my understanding of basic computer science principles. I understand databases, network protocols, languages, user interface, web apps, content management.
Here's an example, where Brent Simmons explains how he's working on his new database synchronization technology.
We have lots of conferences for tech marketers and investors. We have conferences for specific technologies, and various companies have developer conferences. O'Reilly has tried to cut across the disciplines, but they don't welcome everyone equally.
I want the kind of conference they have in academia, once a year, where leading technologists get together for a few days, get on stage and tell us what they've discovered and developed. I know we need this because I find huge gaps in what I know about.
I can understand things much more quickly if they're explained by people who know what they're talking about. I want to meet the leaders of other communities, shake their hands, and get to know them, so we can work together more effectively in the future.