I went to Railscamp, and all I got was a lousy t-shirt How to improve Railscamp Andrew Grimm University of New South Wales
Aim of talk <ul><li>To vaguely summarize current (conflicting) thoughts about improving Railscamp
Speech bubbles represent heckling (zombie-chaser, zombie-heckler, hahahaha...) of new suggestions (some of them quotes) </li></ul>These proposals aren't half bad! No, they're ALL bad!
Reasons for attending Railscamp <ul><li>Boozecamp: A weekend away, werewolf, poker, Guitar Hero, stupid stunts, and beer
SmallTalkcamp: Chat with like-minded people, hear about the newest technologies
John West theory <ul><li>Rejecting people who are being sent in a group by a corporation is ok
Rejecting people who aren't already part of RORO is ok </li></ul>People who aren't active in the community … won't know about the camp or when to buy tickets. And that's fine...
Is there a shortage of tickets? <ul><li>Railscamp Canberra sold out within 4 hours of opening
If you joined RORO after they went on sale, you're SOL until the following one </li><ul><li>Unless you get a ticket from someone dropping out </li></ul></ul>Growing the community ≠ including more people in Railscamp
How to deal with the shortage <ul><li>Increase Railscamp size
Hiring out a hotel might work, but then it'd be more of a conference </li></ul>
More frequent Railscamps <ul><li>Make each Railscamp less special </li></ul>
Region-based Railscamps <ul><li>Some states may be too small for their own camp
Merging states together (Barassi Line) might work better
Would mean not meeting up with people you know </li></ul>Mitosis doesn't work with communities.
Start having Rails conferences <ul><li>Australia has the most Railscamps, and yet has never had a conference </li><ul><li>Are Aussies a bunch of pissheads? </li></ul><li>Conference requires Big Deposit Up Front
Making Railscamp affordable for all? <ul><li>Many people can easily afford railscamp, but not everyone </li><ul><li>Some choose camping over cabins to save money </li></ul><li>Subsidize students, unemployed, first-timers?
Corporate sponsorship could pay </li><ul><li>Banners out, but stubbies and acknowledgement ok </li></ul></ul>
Making Railscamp more productive <ul><li>Pitch sessions
Multiple talk venues <ul><li>Talks going over time are a fact of life
Mainly a problem if the schedule is so jam-packed it forces other talks to be late
Multiple talk venues avoid tight scheduling </li></ul>Epic LOLs when they happen to be management methodology talks
Get people mingling <ul><li>People shouldn't work on their own stuff solo? </li><ul><li>People can casually join in on solo projects </li></ul><li>Werewolf and Guitar Hero are good at this? </li><ul><li>Even though the former seems anti-social
Werewolf criticised as cliquey </li></ul><li>Urban Terror and other first-person shooters aren't good, because they're not face to face? </li><ul><li>Disagreement on this too </li></ul></ul>
Software for group projects <ul><li>Let's do stuff
Appropriate talk topics </li></ul>Yes, we've got them in our sights!
Do we need to reach out to newbies? <ul><li>Unlike RORO meetups, Railscamp attendees are committed to Rails/ruby </li></ul>Railscamp rocks as-is, and if we try to make it super-approachable for new attendees we'll probably just end up gimping it.
Programming activities for Railscamp <ul><li>Projects with instant gratification