Node School and Node Bots
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I'm setting the scene here. It was a dark and stormy night. No wait, it was almost a year ago now that I saw a post about how awesome the author's local node schools are and got super excited about our local chapter.
So after joining up with a others we've managed to get a nice little core group of organizers going again. At the end of last year we ended up having a really awesome event where we ended up splitting into 3 groups.
- An intro group, run by Manil
- A nodebots group, run by Elgin
- A slightly more advanced group run by myself.
This ended up working out super well. We've kinda been trying to reproduce it ever since, but its apparently been super hard to actually get decent space for free, and we've kinda let it slack a bit.
Fast forward to just about 2 months ago now, Conf and Coffee was coming up and we managed to secure a workshop slot at the event. After a bit of debate Elgin ended up volunteering to run a Node Bots workshop.
About a week before the event, I found out Elgin was going to be running everything out of pocket. She was borrowing from friends and using her own equipment. This is why we ended up with a tiny workshop with a max of 10 people.
After a bunch of poking and prodding at work, I got Sauce Labs to sponsor the event. We were hoping to just get a couple more units to attach to Node School for this and future events, but work went above and beyond and sponsored us to have 20 brand new units to give to everyone that attended. Elgin and I managed to keep it a secret up until the actual event. It was so awesome to watch that moment when everyone realized it was theirs. I think this tweet sums it up the best.
Manil managed to snag an awesome picture of the entire group learning:
All these botmakers! 🙌🏽 pic.twitter.com/hi22EiccQq
Overall the workshop went amazing. Elgin and her pineapple taught a really great class. I ran around being essentially the TA and helping people get node working. Helping with syntax. Even helped explain the simple circuits and did some 1:1 teaching with people. Its exactly the kind of setup I personally like (I can do up in front of groups, but I like helping people individually a lot more).
By the end of the workshop I'd say at least half had LEDs blinking, motors spinning, and servos serving.
I would absolutely do it again in the future, and if I can I'd love to maybe do 2-3 over the entire year.
We have our next meetup scheduled. May 19th and will soon have the next couple scheduled so we can start having regular events again. I'm super excited and proud to be working with Node School again, and just love helping people learn and grow.
I have a bunch of random tweets by the attendees I could find up in a Twitter Moment - https://twitter.com/i/moments/985708978532335617