Styles of Events Run by London Communities

There has been a huge growth in technology events taking place over the last few years, especially where I am based in London, UK. As well as major conferences through the year, such as JAXLondon, QCon, etc, there are a wide range of communities and user groups now well established.

There are a range of event styles that all these community groups run, so here is a breakdown of the most common event styles used

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London Scala User Group - Coding Dojo

A coding dojo is a form of deliberate practice where you are concerned with improving your software development approach and language skills. The aim of the Scala coding dojo is to learn how to think in terms of the Scala language and functional programming constructs. The reward from a Scala coding dojo is in that you feel more capable with the language and you learn a little (or a lot) more each time.

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London Java Community - Open Conference 3

On Saturday 27th November the London java Community ran their our third conference in two years. The conference was a great success and was sold out, with lots of people on the wait list who didn’t manage to sign up in time.

| LJC Conference site | meetup page (feedback) |

Everyone managed to weather through the winter morning and get there in plenty of time to mingle and warm up for the day ahead.  It was good to have some time to chat about what we wanted to get from the day and there was a great buzz built up before the start of the talks.

The first talk by Martijn Verberg and Ben Evans on the future of Java was great, it is alway good to have pair presenting and these pair did a great job of entertaining and at the same time educating the crowd.  A fluffy Duke mascot was used to good effect.

I enjoyed running a test driven development workshop aimed at those with no TDD experience or just getting started. Using the information I am building up about TDD on my “tooling up” website, the attendees all said they were confident about starting TDD and so I was pleased I reached my goal.

I hope to run some Test Driven Development and Behavior Driven Development workshops sometime in 2011.

Whist I was running the TDD workshop, there were some very insightful discussions going on at the “Future of Java parkbench” session, with some really interesting information about the internal workings of the Java Virtual Machine.  Maybe someone who was there will do a little write up??

Other highlights for me included:

Have a look at the list of sessions to get a full view on what went on.

There were some great discussions going on after the conference in the pub down the road and it was great to reflect on the great things we learn and divising some plans for LJC events in the new year.

I hope to work more with the project in 2011 as it looks very interesting and is very community oriented.

Thanks to all that came and made the day so special as well as a big thank you to all the other organisers.


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XPDays London 2010 - an Amazing Event

| XPDay 2010 Wik | XPDay 2010 feedback page |

The 2010 XPDay in London was an amazing experience and my thanks go to the organisers and all the many people that gave great open space sessions and experience reports.

Not since the 2009 Lean & Kanban exchange at SkillsMatter have I been so engergised after an event (and I have been to quite a few great events this year). I feel I have learnt so much in these two days that it will take me all the holidays to digest (and blog about) everything. Here are some of my experiences from the event.

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QCon Brainstorming Night

Thanks to the hospitality of the QCon organisers, last nights QCon brainstorming session was a great event. As well as all the great discussions going on, there was a seriously generous helping of really nice food and what seemed a never ending supply of drinks.

QCon is a regular event aimed at those interested and engaged in enterprise software development. The event aims to provide the highest quality presenters and most engaging topics each year. Previously the QCon schedule has been organised from the input of those wishing to present, but for QCon 2011 the goal is to include ideas and recommendations from the community of people who pay to attend QCon when deciding on the schedule.

There was over 30 people that turned up and it was a great atmosphere. I turned up there early (no surprise) with a friend and we were greeted by our very friendly host, Jørn Larsen (on the far right of the picture). Here is what happend that night.

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Scala Dojo Setup Details - LSug Coding Dojo

The London Scala user group are holding monthly dojo events to help everyone get to grips with this exciting new language implementation for the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). A coding dojo is a practial event where everyone decides on a challenge or technology to try out, then getting into groups to code up an application. The coding dojo concludes with each team doing a show-n-tell of what app they have created and any lessons learnt.

Here are some details of how we set up the tools to help with the London Scala user group coding dojo.

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