A Report from BarCamp Blackpool

On October 17th, YDN sponsored yet another grassroots (un)conference, this time BarCamp Blackpool. I went along to talk and mingle and talk some more.

Blackpool is a great place for an event. For those who don't know, it is a seaside tourist town in the North of England. It is known for its yearly illuminations, tower and amusement park. This explains why directly outside my hotel room window was the UK's largest roller coaster.


There was a good turn out, but as usual with free events many people who asked for a place didn't come along. If you are one of these people and you didn't let the organisers know then shame on you! Seriously, people who don't get paid put a lot of hard work in to organising these events. We need to fix the problem of non-attendance somehow. </rant>

There was a nice variety of subjects covered on the day, from the non-technical but geeky talk on Geocaching from Alistair MacDonald to the more hardcore techy Amazon EC2 and Mono framework talk from Tim "tagwalk" Hastings. Rich Quick gave some useful advice on HTML emails in a typically entertaining fashion.

Probably my favourite session was an introduction to British Sign Language by Lalita D'Cruze. After some encouragement at the BarCamp, she has created a blog about learning British Sign Language, which I think will be an interesting read as Lally continues her training.

Evening entertainment was provided by the hilarious Paul Sylvester and a game of Werewolf, rounded off a great day.

Many thanks to Gemma Cameron for organising the event, and to everyone who attended and talked.

Ian Pouncey

Web Developer, Yahoo! London