One discussion of interest took place when the founder of Chronic showcased his Ruby-based date and time parser. It's fairly new, and dude admitted the product was mildly buggy, but a burn war of /b/ proportions erupted and I felt the urge to duck.
What Chronic does is interpret natural language and parse out the date. So if you put in "This Tuesday 5pm," it'll spit out "4/24/2007 at 17:00" or some such. Potentially useful for reservation-setting, event creation on calendars, that kind of jazz. Google Calendar does something similar for its Quick Add function.
"Can Chronic interpret 'Five o'clock last New Years Eve'?" someone asked.
"No," the founder admitted, and it was on.
Things got worse at live demo time. It would have been too tame to expect a bunch of devs to politely ask him to input "Noon Friday next week" or "Today's date and time." Requests like "Fourscore and seven years ago!" and "Next month of Sundays!" came flying forth, and one guy actually demanded that the parser reflect 12 noon as 00:00 because that's what it's supposed to be, and everyone misuses it.
Dude decided to nix the questions with the exception of one last from a row of young cavalier coding elites: "Can I have a pony?"
"If you're good," our fine speaker replied, not missing a beat. "One day..."
At the conclusion of the presentation he smilingly suggested his audience turn in a patch or two, then stepped down.
Wild. This place is like church camp, except God has been replaced with code, and praise songs have been replaced with hax heckling.
Heading off to dinner with a guy whose team allegedly built the first Ruby-based CMS. This should be promising.