I have telling people about attending the upcoming Bangalore Barcamp this weekend and obviously the question is – what is it? Also by chance I happened to read Mark Cuba’s interview in IEEE Spectrum on ‘YouTube is doomed‘ (one of the coolest tech magazines according to me!) in which he says:
Just have fun and be good at what you do. Most people don’t make the effort to be the best at it, you know? They just try to make sure everybody thinks they’re the best. But most people don’t do the work. That’s what I tell people: if you’re going to do something, be the best at it. Take chances and learn from your mistakes. Put yourself out there to let people criticize you, and then learn from it. That is a never-ending process. You gotta keep on learning, always be learning. And most people don’t do that.
It’s like sports. If you can’t shoot with your left hand, you’d better practice. Business is no different; if you want to get better you practice. You want to get better at coding, you read more code, you write more code. You let people pick at your code, and you compare your code. You argue with people. You put yourself out there. You say, “Here’s where I stand.” It’s one thing to put it in a bar conversation; it’s a whole other thing to tell the world, “This is exactly what I think: you are a moron if you buy YouTube.” I could be proven wrong. Worst case is that I learn something.
The concept of Barcamp is on very similar lines. The Bangalore Barcamp Wiki kind of almost nails it for starting (but you gotta come for one to get the hang of it!):
Barcamp is an ad-hoc gathering born out of the desire for people to meet up, share, exchange ideas and possibilities in an open environment. It is an intense event with discussions, demos, and interaction from participants.
Barcamps turn around the notion of a formal conference by eliminating the distinction between speakers and delegates. Everyone is a participant, and is equally welcome to propose a discussion, speak up or add to on a topic they are familiar with. Barcamps are organized and evangelized largely through the web by a community driven, collective organizational process using a wiki as a tool. A Barcamp consists of sessions proposed and scheduled each day by attendees, mostly on-site and “on the fly”, typically using white boards or paper taped to the wall. While Barcamps are loosely structured, there are rules. All attendees are encouraged to present, facilitate or contribute to a session. Everyone is also asked to share information and experiences of the event, both live and after the event, via blogging, photo sharing, social bookmarking, wiki-ing, and IRC. Anyone can initiate a BarCamp, using the BarCamp wiki. Attendance is monetarily free and generally restricted only by space constraints.
I would also like thank the core group and organizers & volunteers to put the effort for bringing everyone together. Read Shourya’s take on why BCB 4 is bound to rock.
There are close to 1000+ registrant this time and I think it might just turnout to be one of the largest ‘conference’ forget ‘unconference’. What I think you can definitely expect is:
- Enthusiastic, open-mind people
- Load of Randomness
- People fighting to get some structure 😉
- Interesting intense discussions on Lots of things
- Network, Network, Network ….
- Starts Ups blooming
- Points of view to make to think out of the Box
My advice – Come, Explore, Participate and if you like Camp (and sponsor the Bar 😉 if you want 😀 )!