I was beyond excited when I learnt that Women Who Code chose me to receive a free ticket for DockerCon Europe 2018 in Barcelona!It was my first time attending a tech conference. Moreover, I am new to Docker. I work as a junior software developer in a company that uses Docker but i haven't worked with it directly just yet. My colleagues are particularly enthusiastic about using Docker to create, deploy and run applications so that I, too, wanted to learn about it and above all start using it.The conference lasted three days and welcomed 2200 people. Who were the attendees of this conference? Developers, system administrators, architects, DevOps engineers, business and marketing professionals. On day one, I attended the women@dockercon networking and happy hour event. Thank you Karen, a Program Manager at Docker, for organizing this!I cannot emphasize enough how much it enhanced my overall DockerCon experience and helped me to feel comfortable. I surely felt a little nervous about attending the conference by myself and this way I met with other women professionals right before the conference officially started. women@dockerconWith other women we kept on meeting throughout the whole conference. If we weren't going to the same workshops we would chat during lunch breaks, explore DockerCon sponsors booths and socialize during the conference party. Another great way to make new friends when going solo is to participate in a program called Docker Pals. Pals are matched with other conference attendees and a guide, who knows their way around DockerCon and helps pals figure out which sessions and activities to attend. This program is really an excellent opportunity to catch up with Docker Captains that are experts in the field, and Community Leaders who are open to engaging with container enthusiasts of all skill levels and backgrounds.Yay look at all my new friends! A shout out to #dockerpals Besides that, DockerCon offers other innovative platforms that helps you to learn and collaborate and perhaps get answers to long pending questions. They are Docker 1 on 1 Hallway Track and Hands-on Labs - the self paced tutorials available without pre-registration. In preparation for the conference my colleague gave me a great intro session to Docker, and I also followed Nigel Poulton's course 'Getting Started with Docker' on Pluralsight. (i even had an opportunity to meet Nigel at the conference :) Thank you Phil Estes for the introduction).During the conference i learnt about Docker's training site training.play-with-docker.com that contains labs and quizzes for beginners as well as advanced users. At the workshops we used Play with Docker playground that allows you to build and run Docker containers and create clusters in Docker Swarm Mode.For those of you new to Docker, there are two main concepts to grasp to understand how Docker works: images and containers. An image contains everything an application needs to run: a source code and all runtime dependencies, config files and binaries. One important thing to note is that images are stateless and immutable. We can create an image using a Dockerfile. A Dockerfile is a text file that contains a script and allows various commands (FROM, COPY, RUN, CMD, etc.). At DockerCon general session the docker assemble tool was demoed. It analyzes your application, dependencies, and caches, and give you an image without having to write your own Dockerfiles. In order to share the image we have to push it to a registry - Docker Hub is the default one. Once in the registry others can pull it. When learning about Docker for the first time, people often draw an analogy between a container and a virtual machine (VM). At DockerCon workshops it was made clear that even though a container looks like a VM, it isn't. A container is just another process on the machine. It uses namespaces and control groups to provide isolation. Developer tools include Docker Compose and Docker for Mac and Docker for Windows that are commonly referred to as Docker Desktop. Docker Desktop provides the Docker Engine with Swarm and Kubernetes orchestrators right on your local machine, all from a single install.Compose is a tool for defining and running multi-container Docker applications. With Compose, you use a YAML file to configure your application's services. Then, with a single command, you create and start all the services from your configuration (https://docs.docker.com/compose/overview/). During the conference it has been announced that compose on Kubernetes is now being open sourced. In addition, #Docker Desktop Enterprise was introduced, adding new commercially supported developer capabilities to help corporate developers fully benefit from Docker.In the conference opening session, Docker CEO Steve Singh said that #DigitalTransformation is turning every company into a software company and companies need to transform, or risk becoming irrelevant. According to Singh, Docker plays an important role in that transformation.In that spirit, the general sessions featured Docker customers success stories and various demos, some showing how to get up and running with containers in seconds. I've been inspired, I've learned the best practices, and most importantly I have created some valuable connections with other attendees, speakers, Docker Captains and Docker pals. Thank you Women Who Code for giving me a chance to learn something new and join a new community. Docker, you are doing well in building the kind of inclusive community we should all strive to foster.Original post published here. Find out more about Petra Spirkova on Twitter and LinkedIn.