Engineers, investors, developer evangelists, technology executives, industry influencers and more gathered in San Francisco this week for a look at the future of developer-driven technology and strategy workshops.

The Dev-to-Dev Summit 2016 spanned two days at SPUR, the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association. About 1,300 people registered for the event, but about 500 showed up both days, according to Christian Perry, executive producer of Dev-to-Dev.

Perry is already aiming to double attendance next year, citing a “sea change in the interest” of mobile development. The conference started as a half-day event at Rackspace in 2013. Perry said Dev-to-Dev is the only conference that focuses on end-users.

The event included speakers from household names like TaskRabbit, Uber and Salesforce, but also featured newer players like Codacy, BitPusher and PubNub. Here are some highlights.

Monetizing Your App

CEO of Circulate, Ari Jacoby, talked about how to make money off applications without annoying your users. Gone are the days where unicorn companies that raised a lot of money can put revenue second. But the market is correcting itself, Jacoby suggested.

“VC funding is tougher,” he said.

According to Jacoby, three types of data sell really well: de-identified data, behavioral data and intent data. Commodity data isn’t worth much, Jacoby said.

To monetize those data, companies need to store them and hold on to them. Jacoby pointed out rare data is worth about $2 to $7 per 1,000 advertisement impressions on one webpage (CPM). Right now, US data is highest in value, with China and Brazil catching up. Avoid the EU, Jacoby said.

Circulate, based in Philadelphia, started in 2009 in the aggregator business, selling data “with a privacy friendly basis.” 

Learning Opportunities

The company isn't in the news much, Jacoby said. “I’m sure we eventually will [publicize]. We’re just weird.”

Consider Legal Issues

Augie Rakow, an attorney at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe specializing in startups, shared legal strategies for dev-to-dev companies. The key is never negotiate valuation, Rakow suggested.

“When Google acquired Waze, it wasn’t for the revenue,” he said. “It was because it made Google Maps awesome.”

So instead of negotiating valuation, you should discuss how much money you need and how much control of your company to give up. These are items you can have a real conversation about and set terms for, Rakow suggested.

Another term to consider is board control. Prioritize control of majority seats for as long as you can. “Independents tend to side with investors,” Rakow said.

Dev-to-Dev's next event will be a Mobile Edition Aug. 10 and 11 in San Francisco. Developers, evangelists, founders and investors are invited to attend.

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