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    Ongoing observations by End Point Dev people

    End Point meetup in Ljubljana, Slovenia

    Jon Jensen

    By Jon Jensen
    December 29, 2023

    5 men smiling for the camera outside against classic pillar and walls

    Remote-first work

    End Point has always been a primarily remote work company. We have offices in Manhattan, New York City and Johnson City, Tennessee, yet the people who work in them mostly interact online with remote colleagues.

    Most of the time that is wonderful because we have no commute if we work at home, or as short of a commute as we want for those who work in a nearby office or co-working space. We are also able to move without changing jobs. And our meetings with clients are usually remote in any case.

    International interaction

    Perhaps best of all, working remote-first has allowed us to work together with colleagues around the world: currently in 13 countries and as many time zones. That is pretty good international representation for a company of 70 people.

    A downside of mostly remote work is that we generally have to make an effort to ever meet each other in person. And while remote meetings are convenient, they lack some impact that in-person meetings have. There is especially a big difference between meeting remotely with someone you have never met, and someone you’ve met in person at least once!

    So we try to meet up with our co-workers when we are at all “in the neighborhood” of each other. That can happen when more than one of us attends a conference or work on a VisionPort installation, when we meet with a client, when we have meetings at one of our offices, or when one or more of us happens to be traveling and proposes meeting with others in the area.

    In 2023 alone I am aware of such meetings among our staff that happened in:

    • Malaysia
    • Spain
    • Belgium
    • Slovenia
    • New York
    • Tennessee
    • Missouri
    • Indiana
    • Utah
    • Washington (state)
    • California

    And there are probably a few others I didn’t hear about or forgot!

    Ljubljana, Slovenia

    A sunny view overlooking a European city with classic and modern architecture, with mountains in the background

    Here I want to share some photos of a brief meet-up four of us had in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, back in April. I was traveling there while on vacation with my daughter Mira, so I asked around among my co-workers who lived nearby, where “nearby” meant within a few hours’ travel.

    Our crew was Couragyn Chretien from Canada and Nicholas Piano from England, both living in Spain; Marco Pessotto from Italy, living in Croatia; and I was on vacation from my current base in Utah.

    None of us had been to Ljubljana before and we all were eager to see it. Couragyn and Nicholas flew, Marco drove, and I took a train from Zagreb, Croatia, the previous stop on my itinerary.

    We booked vacation rental apartments that were near each other and close to the river that runs through the city, nestled among town squares, pedestrian areas, and restaurants.

    We had dinner together the evening we all arrived, and breakfast in the morning, then met in one of the apartments. The four of us had recently not overlapped very much in End Point projects we were involved with, so we began by having a few hours of “show and tell” to go over several projects we have been working on for clients.

    Here is Nicholas giving us an application demonstration:

    Man in an apartment looks toward large TV screen mounted on a wall, showing a computer display of a website

    As we are prone to do, we dug into some of our current technical challenges to try to help each other out of problems. That was actually really helpful because it forced us to move beyond high-level descriptions and app demos to implementation and troubleshooting. I don’t remember that we solved any big problem this time, but so it goes.

    We next talked about an internal development project that may yet see the light of day.

    We also had an impromptu review of our main website’s Google Analytics reports to reflect on the effects of our domain move from endpoint.com to endpointdev.com almost two years prior. Visitor traffic and broken links are some of the many domain move considerations and most of us were not deeply involved in that process so it was good to spread some of the knowledge learned.

    We wrapped up with a timed selfie:

    4 men standing in a living room smiling for the camera

    Then before dinner we were treated to a walking tour of Ljubljana by our local friend Šime Kodžoman, who I met about a decade earlier through his brother Jure and the European Perl and Interchange open source software developer communities.

    Šime knows a ton about the city and we spent an enjoyable afternoon and evening together as we walked 13–14 km ≈ 8–9 miles and saw as much as we could.

    A few highlights among many:

    4 men walking left across a city square in front of buildings with modern architecture

    Two brutalist concrete high-rise buildings tower over a concrete square

    Colorful 4-story buildings with trees along concrete city walls containing a river reflecting a cloudscape

    A colorful European city square with clocktower and church

    A sunny view of a castle wall and tower with flags flying in the breeze, against a blue sky with white clouds

    If you are interested in learning more about Ljubljana, there are plenty of good resources to read online. Start with ljubljana.si, visitljubljana.com, and Wikipedia’s Ljubljana entry.

    We wrapped up our day with another meal together, and the next morning we headed our separate ways.

    It was great to meet each other in person, to see Šime again, and to get a feel for a beautiful city!

    company conference remote-work travel