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Building Great Software

Iowa Code Camp – ahhh

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Our first code camp happened last Saturday and it was a smashing success.

Updated: Cindy’s pictures are uploaded here.

~120 people attended 25 sessions in 5 tracks over the course of the day. We aren’t that big of a market compared to many places that get 200-300 attendees. The vibe of the event was upbeat, the flow was excellent and the speakers were all quality.

Many people and organizations contributed to make this happen. I’d like to thank ITS at the University of Iowa for hosting us, providing the facility and so much more. Ed Hill and Mike Noel went far out of their way to make sure we had what we needed to pull this off.

There were 6 of us that primarily took responsibility for this code camp. Bryan Sampica did much of the marketing and emailed countless people getting the word out. He also arranged though his company to have 50 attendee and 25 leader/volunteer t-shirts made. They were excellent quality and really added to the event.

Javier Lozano brought in a great group of contributors who made all of this financially possible. His work in the sponsor area helped us bring in a great set of prizes for everyone in the closing session. He also did some good things like let us use his company’s conference calling for planning our meetings. We probably wouldn’t have talked much as a group without it (Skype kept failing us).

Greg Sohl handled countless details (the kind I would have overlooked) that really made the flow and experience excellent at the actual event. Without his effort the experience would have been greatly diminished.

Greg Wilson kept the schedule full of high quality speakers and when there was some churn toward the end he stepped up and filled the slots last minute and even filled out the 5th track/room late in the game.

Last but not least, Tom Burns was our liaison for the conference center facility and he coordinated many of the logistical issues with Greg Sohl to make this event run smoothly. He did cool things like coordinate our code camp dinner at The Mill and he got a great Ethiopian blend of coffee(my favorite, thanks).

All of the leaders did much more beyond what I’ve mentioned above, but it would take too long to cover it all in one post. Also, thanks to all of the volunteers who did everything from registering people to setting up the food.

This may seem like excessive thanks, but trust me it is not. An event that runs as well as this only happens because many skilled, conscientious people invest a lot of their own time to make it happen. No one on the planning end of this event got paid a dime for their effort.

I’m looking forward to Iowa Code Camp – Des Moines this November.

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Written by Chris Sutton

May 6, 2008 at 8:47 pm

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