Game Scotland 1st March, University of Abertay, Dundee
One day event all about the game industry in Scotland. I went to this with Phil Thomson the other half of Oneder Games; a small game company we have setup and are developing our first game. A series of talks were held throughout the day covering a number of topics with breakout sessions to talk to other attendees and a small number of exhibitors.
Details about the event are available here.
Makerland 17th – 19th March, Warsaw, Poland
This was the first time I gave a workshop, more details are available here on the Workshops page
Edinburgh Mini Maker Faire 20th April
This was the second year for the Edinburgh Mini Maker Faire and again took place in Summerhall. I spoke to lots of people on the day and was interviewed by Alasdair Allan from Make Magazine. His write up can be seen here. The interview can be seen below.
Hack n Make 11th May, Aberdeen
This was the second year of organising and running Hack n Make as part of the University of Aberdeen May Festival. Again many thanks to Joanne Donaldson for all her help. There was a mixture of new Makers and those from last year. We had a good turn out of people on the day and everyone seemed to have a good time.
Scottish Ruby Conference 12th – 13th May, Crieff Hydro Perthshire
It was a case of driving straight down to Crieff at the end of Hack n Make. The Scottish Ruby Conference took place over two days at the beautiful Crieff Hydro. The conference has a history of providing speakers to give talks on a wide variety of issues not just Ruby programming. Luke and I had been selected to give a presentation entitled ‘Coding a new Generation’ about the lessons learned in running a Code Club. We gave the presentation on the Monday afternoon and seemed to be very well received. Giving the presentation of Monday left us plenty of time to enjoy the rest of the conference.
Ron Evans whom I’d met at Makerland gave the closing keynote. His presentation was quite inspirational and covered the links between programming and robotics with demonstrations involving Drones, Spheros and connected devices. The conference concluded with a party on the Tuesday evening that went on till very late.
The Coding a new Generation session can be viewed below. The presentation given in conjunction with my son; 9 at the time; talks about whats involved in running a local Code Club for primary age school kids. Covers lessons learned in getting kids switched onto programming and making. How to extend the Code Club curriculum with simple robotics projects based on the Raspberry Pi and Arduino. Using a Makey Makey to create a banana keyboard.
Code the City 21st – 22nd June, Aberdeen
Taking place over two days at the University of Aberdeen. The Code the City event brought together a wide range of people and skills with the aim of building projects useful to the local community. A number of people pitched ideas and then we formed into teams. Our team #GowithFlo consisting of four members Flo, Alan, Mark and myself. The original idea was to develop a website or information portal that could inform web designers or content creators how best to create content for users with disabilities.
Over the two days the original brief changed a number of times as we did research and looked more closely at our target audience. The final project was entitled ‘Ten Percent News’ and was the bare bones of an easy news service for people with learning difficulties. Ten Percent News will provide them a way to digest news and local events in a simplified way. Our team based on a peer voting scheme came joint second.
It has been decided to continue this project and we are actively looking at ways of bringing it to fruition.
CampGND 27th – 29th June, A field nr Huntly
Organised by a couple of members of the 57 North Hackspace. CampGND was billed as a weekend long camping festival for hackers and makers running June 27th-29th 2014. Held in a scenic location in the North East of Scotland, with power, wifi and mesh networks and a lake to swim in.
Eleven of us participated in the weekend and despite the rain we managed to get a few projects done. Including setting off a number of rockets and flying a drone.
YRS Festival of Code 2014 28th July – 3rd August Aberdeen / Plymouth
I was a mentor for 2014’s Festival of Code at the Aberdeen centre. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to travel to Plymouth as I went to the Commonwealth games in Glasgow instead. The kids worked really hard all week and produced a space pirates trading game using a mixture of technologies.
Brighton Mini Maker Faire 6th September
The mini maker faire was held on Saturday 6th Saturday I traveled down the day before with my daughter Leanne and her friend Scarlett who ran a “Making a Silver Ring Workshop” I took my underwater robots. The day of the faire was very hot and was well attended with something in the region of 4500 people. I was busy all day so unfortunately didn’t get the opportunity to visit any of the other stands although I did get the chance to catch up with some of the regular attendees from other faires. I also heavily promoted Code Club and spoke to a number of people about starting their own.
Peterhead Library 8th November
I ran a workshop at Peterherad Library to give kids a taste of coding and to introduce them to Code Club. We played a Card Game called Bits & Bytes, had an introduction to Scratch and Makey Makey as well as building Brushbots
Dundee Meetup for Code Club 18th November
Meeting with Code Club volunteers and promotion to new clubs
CAS Conference Edinburgh 22nd November
Attended the CAS conference at Napier Universiy, Edinburgh. Representing Code Club. Demonstrated Scratch curriculum and Makey Makey banana piano