The Open Source tech community (or “family” as I often refer to them as) are great! Not are they only very welcoming, willing to learn and teach each other, but here are more reasons why I believe this and why it can happen any where.
On the train to Waterloo, my wife and I were talking and bouncing ideas about the various Open Source projects and communities I am currently working with. A woman sitting near us kept looking over at us, but I didn’t know why. I took out my laptop for Sara and me to assist in our discussion. When the woman saw all my tech stickers on my laptop, she started saying to her husband, “I have learnt a bit of coding, but I want to learn more and be involved in a community of like-minded people” - my ears perked up - someone else talking about code?! Typical me I started talking to the women about tech and code, suggesting the many communities I belong to.
On the Eurostar I sat next to a woman I met at the AcornAspiration TEDx event Nadira Hussain, such a small world right! We spoke about the event itself and how great it was (I won’t go into the details there are already amazing blog posts and tweets about it already), and then we went on to other events we have both attended since then - although it had only been 3 weeks. We did quickly notice that we were unaware of most of the events the other went to and realised abundant the community event scene is in London. The next chat was about future events, and we decided to exchange contact details and to continue that discussion by email so we don’t forget all the great events being mentioned. We are both going to the EmpowerHack Health
Heading back on the Metro from Euro Disney to our hotel in Paris, I was again talking to Sara about all the amazing tech communities and Open Source projects, when I noticed the women sitting opposite was paying attention. As normal, I get straight to the point and asked if she is a techie. Great news! She replied she was a Python developer. We spent the next 30mins or so having a great time talking about tech, while her boyfriend looked bored - Sara was used to it so just rested her eyes from the long day. Before we parted ways, I asked what tech communities she belongs / goes to. I was surprised that she replied none - someone who was so passionate about tech and easy to talk to didn’t belong to any tech communities in London, when they practically grow on trees! You know the rest, I remedied this situation “pronto”.
On the way back to London on the Eurostar, I went to get us a coffee as there had been long delays. As usual, I was wearing my geeky swag hoping to chat to techies on our adventures. Queuing to get coffee, I noticed someone starring at my Ubuntu cap. No surprises here, I started a conversation and it turns out they were a Java developer. Now the 30minute queue seemed just like a few minutes and the 30minutes afterwards also did too. When I got back to my seat Sara knew I had met another techie and her only concern was, is the coffee still warm.
I have been thinking, what is the best way, to chat to techies while travelling, queuing etc. I need a hoodie (not t-shirt because I am always cold) that combines all my communities and technologies, like a word cloud. Please send your ideas through https://github.com/WeRockTech/werocktech.github.io/blob/master/TagCloud.md
This is taken from WeRockTech, but you get the idea.
Eddie has been programming for over a decade and has consulted for organisations in the financial, governmental and private sectors. Outside of his consultancy role Eddie enjoys attending and contributing to hackathons and conferences around the world which deal with a variety of technical and social issues. His first foray into the realm of Women's issues was EmpowerHack's "Empowering women and girl refugees" hackathon. Since then Eddie has contributed to EmpowerHack's Open Source projects from a technical perspective and has also brought his expertise and infectious enthusiasm to actively support the growth of women in tech at WHFNP and AcornAspirations. He has been likened to Sheldon Cooper from "The Big Bang Theory" with marginally more social skills. Jaoude Studios Ltd Connect with Eddie Jaoude on Twitter or LinkedIn.