Attended My First Code Camp

I had not attended a code camp before, so when I found out about it a few weeks ago, I was quick to register! It took place at the University of Victoria (UVic) this past Saturday, and was put on by the Victoria .NET Developers Association.

From looking at the schedule, there was a good variety of sessions available, although all were related to .NET in some way or another. It was hard choosing which ones to attend, as there were three happening at any one time. Over the course of the day, I attended six sessions. From the schedule:

  • LINQ: Simplifying Data Handling in ASP.NET – Ken Cox
  • Cryptography So Easy A Goat Could Do It – David Woods
  • Website Hacking 101 – Sql Injection and Cross Site Scripting – David Woods
  • Conquering XML with LINQ in Visual Basic 9.0 – Beth Massi
  • Parachuting into a Brownfield – Donald Belcham
  • Introduction to Test Driven Development – Tom Opgenorth

It was all very thought-provoking material, and I came out at the end knowing a little more about .NET than I had going in. And feeling a little brain-drained too. The material presented was not light stuff. But it was well-explained, and there were live examples thanks to laptops and projectors.

Coffee and lunch was provided, just for attending. There were quite a few people there, although I didn’t do a head count. During breaks, at lunch and between sessions, there was much mingling happening. I met some people while doing that, which itself was worthwhile.

Before the day concluded, there was a draw for some rather nice prizes. There were a few boxes of Visual Studio 2005 Professional, some computer books, software licenses, tickets to the upcoming DevTeach conference, and an XBOX 360! I received a license for the Dundas Charting tool for .NET, which I have not used before, but have read about. I can imagine I will be spending some time getting that figured out. A coworker got a Resharper license – lucky!

It was overall a good experience, and time well-spent. And it didn’t cost me a thing! I will certainly be on the watch for similar events happening in Victoria in the future.