Corresponding pictures for this blog are available here: http://abv8.me/2Q.
My business partner Chris and I have made our 3rd voyage to eBay DevCon, this year in wonderful San Jose in northern California (where the girls are warm so I could hear my sweet baby say … ).
We flew in last night, Jet Blue flight 317 direct from Washington Dulles to Oakland International. Oddly enough, Chris’ neighbor Tooland happened to be the pilot, and he hooked us up with a free Heineken — yeah baby. Anyway, it was a very long 6 hour flight (it was only 6 hours 23 minutes in the air when I flew to Paris from Philly), and we had some rocky air with a little detour as there were t-storms and tornadoes in Kansas.
We touched down at around 9pm local time (12am EST) and headed over to Budget Rental where we picked up our awesome Kia compact POS. 🙂 Actually, it’s not too bad — good turning radius and small — hard for all the crazy California drivers to smash into. We got to the hotel at 10:30 or so and proceeded to pass out.
So here we are in beautiful San Jose. Well, cities are just cities, and, being the tree fanatic that I am, we had to visit the redwoods. We got up early this morning — 6:30 or so, and decided to make our way to the Big Basin Redwoods State Park. Now, for whatever reason, we put “shortest distance” into the GPS instead of “fastest time,” and we ended up on California route 35 — heading across the mountains on one of the steepest, windiest, but most scenic roads, I could have ever imagined. I got some awesome pics of northern California vegetation, and, finally, about 2 hours later, we got to the park.
Now let me tell you, the coastal redwoods surprised me. For all that they are huge, in the grand scheme of things, they really don’t seem all that large. Really, a 300ft tall tree is only as tall as a football is long. Gargantuan for a tree, yes, but in the grand scheme of things, they just feel like another tree — just ones that dwarf any big tree we have back east. That being said, they are so tall and straight, they are kind of modest. If a broad, bushy oak grew 300ft tall with a 200ft wide crown, I doubt I could relate to the perspective of such a tree being so modest.
From the park, we made our way to Santa Cruz so we could at least see the Pacific ocean. We spent a little time at Seabright beach http://abv8.me/2R, and ate at a nice little place on the wharf named Aldo’s. Apparently Guy Fieri ate there once. The burger was delicious, and we had a little European Starling join us for a bite. We named him Fred, and we were the best of buds.
From there, we headed back up route 17 to the eBay campus here in San Jose to listen to Madhu Gupta and company present the basic ins and outs of the new eBay selling manager pro applications platform.
General high points:
- eBay items trade at a velocity of $2000/second
- Some eBay sellers might put more trust in third party apps if they appeared to be hosted by eBay
- eBay decided to make a platform where third party developers could integrate with eBay in a smart iframe or in hosted HTML
- They will use the open gadgets specification
- This will launch in August
Now, we have already developed our first application for this platform. It is eZ labelZ for eBay, and it is a variation on our site ezbarcodez.com — geared to provide great integration with the already present eBay APIs so that sellers can print functional labels for their items.
Since we have been involved in the project since the alpha, most information was nothing new, but it was good to get a concrete overview.
Afterwards was “Happy Hour” with free beer and hors-d’oeuvres, and some networking. We had some great chats with some eBay personnel, especially the documentation team, and well, what can I say? Free beer.
So now we’re back at the hotel and I have hundreds of pics to parse through. Hopefully they will appear on Facebook tonight and I will link them here.