eurucamp day two: code is a means of expressing yourself

Berlin heard our call, and improved its weather significantly for day two of eurucamp. True to form, The Barn was pumping out coffee, the fresh fruit was laid out, and spirits were high.

Ivan Zarea opened up the first official talk with an ingenious presentation about how to teach. He suggested teaching students qualities one would like to see in a co-worker, such as the ability to hunt down bugs, read the source code, and choose the right tools. His talk was brilliant and silly, and included pictures of chinchillas. It was a great start.

LuĂ­s Ferreia was up next, and introduced the crowd to the benefits of Crystal, and also encouraged attendees to start contributing to the core language.

Next up was Leslie Hawthorn, who passionately questioned the phrase "$PERSON isn't technical". She successfully made the case that this phrase is toxic, and stops us from collaborating with others. Thanks Leslie, for challenging us all to change the way we think about members of our community.

In the last block of talks before lunch, Christophe Philemotte then took to the stage to give us useful tips about how to dive into a new code base, and reminded the crowd that code is read more than it is written. Meike Wiemann introduced us to beacons as a potential replacement for GPS and QR code technologies, and Davy Stevenson taught us that in order to write scalable code, we must develop for the mullionth user and the billionth request, and reminded us that the edge is a certainty.

Then came eurucamp's crown jewel, (ummm we mean Ruby!), the afternoon siesta and activities time. Attendees sprawled on the grass outside the venue, munched on their Knofi lunches, sipped ice coffees, and participated in numerous activities like cross-stitching, canoeing, sketch notes, slack-lining, and of course, hacking. Kimberly Turnage, eurucamp's wonderful speech-to-text provider also gave an incredible introduction to what she does, the technology she uses, and the philosophy behind it. She also inspired many a listener to check out Plover, open source software for stenography. Many thanks to everyone who organized an activity!

When all the ice cream was gone, the ice coffee melted, and the bananas eaten, eurucampers headed back into the hall for more talks. Heroku contributor Terence Lee discussed mruby, Marta Paciorkowska asked speakers to question how they portray themselves and for conferences to value content, not showmanship. Rebecca Poulson taught us how to structure our companies to make them best for juniors, such as cultivating a safe environment to ask questions, support for mentors, appropriate first-time projects, and clean documentation, and Daniel Schweighofer discussed ways in which companies can create family friendly workplaces.

For the final talk of the night, Joseph Wilk took to the stage for an incredible live coding performance. He stated that code should be seen, as well as heard, and that it's a means of expressing oneself. Using technologies such as Sonic Pi and Overtone to combine coding and music, one can perform their code to large audiences. It's a growing, and fascinating, project. After a short introduction, Joseph astounded the crowd, by live coding a visual and auditory track. Everyone's eyes were glued to the screen, their heads bobbing (a certain blogger got goosebumps!).

It was the perfect, and as Erik said, a very Berlin way to end the first full day of eurucamp, and everyone spilled out of the conference hall, minds blown, to either head home for some much deserved rest, or to the Filmuniversität Babelsberg to watch a sneak peek preview of the CODE documentary.

Many thanks to everyone who helped out today, organized activities, passed out water and sunscreen, and ate bananas. We'll see you tomorrow!