On Saturday 35(ish) developers met up on rainy day in Birmingham to take part in an Open Space Code day on the Windows Azure Platform.
Around 5 of us had experience of Open Space meetings or developing for Azure prior to the day – and I think only two of us had experience of both As I was on point to keynote the day and make sure it was a success, I did turn up with a few concerns matched by a good deal of excitement. My primary concern was that people would expect to be trained – and the Open Space format is most definitely not that. But it is about learning and it is about contributing and helping others to learn.
I have created a separate post on the Open Space Technology format if you are new to it.
To cut to the chase – it all worked out stunningly well. I had a great time throughout and everyone seemed to leave happy.
Me – near the end when it was clear people were having fun!
At the end of the session I went round everyone in the room to get them to share something they had learnt during the day (which I will post on later – the good and the bad). We also did a few show of hands which TBH blew me away.
- 100% managed to get a Windows Azure application running locally and deployed and running in the cloud. (Actually one chap didn’t – but he emailed me later on Sunday to say he had sorted out the problem – a typo)
- 100% would recommend the format of an Open Space Code day to a colleague
- 100% plan to spend more time looking at Azure in the future.
100% on all three is awesome and is a testimony to the openness of those who attended to try out something new, as much as it is to the Open Space format and the Azure technologies.
I did want to thank:
- Dave Evans who made it all happen,from inception through to event registration, biscuits, fun lunch at the local pub and much more. Top man.
- Hugo Russell for hosting us throughout the day and allowing us to use the building (the excellent Birmingham Science Park) – and for sorting out the powercut and the wireless!
- Geff Lombardi for doing lots of “grunt work” during the day
- My colleagues David Gristwood and Martin Beeby for sharing the load during the day
- Everyone who attended for helping everyone to their left (You needed to have been there!)
On the day we had:
- Lots of “hello world” level apps being built
- Lots of migrations of databases to SQL Azure – including production databases
- AppFabric development
- MVC development
- PHP development
- WCF development
- Hybrid on-premise and cloud being tested
- VS2008 and VS2010 RC
A few others have also posted about the event:
- Things to do in Birmingham on a Wet Saturday #37 – Code Windows Azure Applications some pictures from David Gristwood
- http://jcoulter.co.uk/post/2010/02/Azure-Coding-Day-Follow-Up.aspx summary of the format from James Coulter
- http://hippytechblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/setting-up-simple-web-app-talking-to.html Nice step by step from Adam Hicks
And lots of tweets including: