Feeds

10,000 app devs SLEEP together in four-day code-chat-drink tech orgy camp

Hey, geeks: Hate the great outdoors? Now you can stay in a tent in a big tent

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Pic London's O2 is this week hosting Campus Party - a four-day tech-fest during which as many as 10,000 software developers from across Europe get together for coding, talking and drinking. The marketing people like to call it Glastonbury For Geeks.

Campus Party does have tents – three and a half thousand of them, two geeks to a tent, the rest being day trippers – but that's where the comparison ends. The tents at Campus Party are in regimented rows, and paid for by a sponsor list which includes just about every company your correspondent remembers campaigning against during his own education: Nestlé, Barclays, American Express, and so on.

There are also thousands of developers, the vast majority of whom are too young to remember the corporate sins of the past.

Girl in tent

Hm, what's that in-tents smell ... Rows of devs packed in

The biggest sponsor is Telefonica (owner of the O2 brand) whose name appears on every banner and notice board. Telefonica has been sponsoring Campus Party for many years, though few have been involved since its beginning in Spain in 1996. The event moves between European cities every year, though this is its first year in London.

When pushed the organisers admitted that London makes a fine host and there was talk of a permanent home, or at least an annual UK event, at the dome - depending on how the next four days go.

Those who arrived yesterday, the official opening day, will get four days of motivational speeches and technical talks, but they'll have missed Monday night's stage-managed interview session which saw: ex-gadget show presenter Suzi Perry talking to EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes (aka unelected digital tsar Steelie Neelie), who got a round of applause for endorsing net neutrality; and a rep from UK Trade & Investment who told us the British government thinks innovation is important, just like those attending Campus Party; while Telefonica showed a video describing attendees as “unique innovators who dreamt of changing the world.”

There was also a performance by beat-box artist Beardyman, who continued the self-congratulatory tone by telling the audience they were the most intelligent he'd ever met, something which, by this point, some of them were starting to believe. These people think they can change the world with a few lines of JavaScript – but perhaps they should.

It's hard not to get swept up in the optimism, and to remind oneself that computer programmers aren't (necessarily) the social outcasts they once were. The lack of female geeks was mentioned several times in the opening ceremony, and Thursday sees an entire seminar stream devoted to the subject, but those who've been in the industry for a decade or two might be surprised to see the event isn't entirely dominated by men. It's a long way from being equal, but it is changing.

10,000 geeks in regimented tents under a concrete sky might not be Glastonbury for Geeks, but in honesty it probably stands a greater chance of making the world a better place than any music festival – even if it has to work one build-time error at a time. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Sin COS to tan Windows? Chinese operating system to debut in autumn – report
Development alliance working on desktop, mobe software
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.