So; A few weeks ago a new meetup came on the scene, and it was briefly a bit confusing. This seemed to be an official Pentaho meetup group in London. OK, err thats odd I thought. However a bit of digging and it soon becomes clear this is a different kettle of fish.
Now; It just so happened we had actually scheduled (albeit not published) The next PLUG in January, and as it turned out they moved Challenge big data so as not to clash with #PCM15. So partly this was my fault for not promoting the January booking.
Anyway the big question is – can these two groups co-exist? Well yes I think so. Should they have both been done under the “plug” banner, probably yes. I think if you’re looking for a meetup group then having 2 in the same area will be confusing. However as long as we’re clear with content, target audience and dates I don’t see a problem here. And that’s the key thing – the target audience between PLUG and challenge big data is different. Sure there may be some cannibalisation, but lets see.
I shall be at the challenge event, promoting PLUG 🙂 And I fully expect that cross promotion to go both ways. I’m not sure I’ll attend every challenge event – I guess I’ll be a content tart!
In the mean time, we’re still after content for the next PLUG which now moves into February – Skillsmatter have shown in the past that the sooner content is locked down the more signups and ultimately the more people attend – so this isn’t crazy to be asking for talks now. If anyone has either content requests, or a talk they wish to do then please let me know.
Oh, and by the way don’t forget to support the first Kickstarter project in #Pentaho land – Saiku Reporting – this is a very worthy project! Details here
Skillsmatter are soon going to be crowdfunding themselves – they’re after £1/2 million to further the business. Given their stunning new venue and their frankly unique business model I’m pretty sure this is going to be a great success for them. Details on crowdcube
So #PCM15 was over, and frankly was a resounding success. London delivered as a spectacular location, and the community provided some great content. Thanks to everyone involved! Oh; And also we re-raised the T-shirt bar, so thats good too (This had slipped in recent times!)
Personally I felt I actually missed a lot of the content, so i’ll be perusing the slides to see what I missed!
Diethard has already mentioned there are at least 2 strong candidates for #PCM16, there’ll be a vote some time in the new year and away we go again! I suggest we set out a timescale, and allow a period of “PR” for the organisers!
A couple of things were discussed extensively over the weekend, or rather there’s a few things that I think should be put out widely into the community.
The first was event timing. I’d pondered on suggesting a move of date – I feared PWorld was canibalising PCM, but even before #PCM15 I had spoken to a few people and come to the conclusion that the pros outweigh the cons. I got a similar impression from discussions during the event too – So it seems to make sense to stick to our early autumn time slot. I do think it makes a lot of sense to come after PWorld though.
The second thing was about event structure – well we’ve fallen into a pretty regular routine now, albeit each new organiser tweaks it in their own way. We now have a Friday event (hack in our case), multi track conference on Saturday and social events on the Sunday. The feedback around this is that people are looking for some change – but it’s not clear what. Personally I don’t think PCM is ready to move to a multi-day conference – I like the fact that we blitz it in one day. In reality maybe we could extend Friday, but again – would people travel any earlier? Or would you just get the same attendees turning up late as before?
Finally a quick dump of advice to the next organiser: ((I may add to this, i’m sure i’ve forgotten stuff)
- Use meetup / eventbright to help organise
- Be super clear about directions, hotels and locations. Send repeated emails (we didn’t do this some people complained!)
- Clearly the event is free – but do charge for lunch. We do recommend lunch onsite – otherwise you’ll never get people back from the cafe’s again! (Cascais!)
- Be sure to produce clear agendas with multiple paper copies available at the venue
- Spread the load – you’ll need a team to help you both organise and sponsor the event. There’s lots of different aspects so this is pretty easy to do.
- Feel free to add your own identity / twist to the event, but remember we are here because the formula above has evolved and matured nicely!
- Remember this is a community event organised by the community for the community. That does not mean pentaho are excluded – precisely the opposite. It is important that there is a strong Pentaho presence at the event.
Either way I look forward to whatever shape #PCM16 brings. I’ll be there!
So, the Pentaho Community Meetup hackathon is only a week away.
Firstly boring stuff – Location and signup page can be found here NOTE: Skillsmatter has moved!
There is a bar, we will try and arrange some snacks, but no pizza this time I’m afraid!
There are prizes too thanks to Harris, but I’m not sure what they are. I did reject signed photos of him though.
Now, how will it work? Well #PCM14 was a “chaos” hack, which meant “do anything you like”, and form teams as you see fit. We’ll carry on in that theme but with a few crucial changes:
- We would like to encourage “random”ish teams to form – If you turn up with 5 of your workmates, then please don’t form a team with them – what’s the point in that!
- Whilst we do encourage you to bring your own tools and existing frameworks – please do NOT do any pre-preparation in advance. No pre-building the ETL, cube or etc.
- Given we’ve said that – We would like to introduce a theme for the data this year – not mandatory, but maybe you’ll get more points! The theme is going to be #opendata and there is a great place to start looking here: https://data.gov.uk/data/search
Note: If you pick a horrid XML dump which is massive and impossible to parse then good luck.
Turn up from 6pm and some of us will be there earlier.
Officially kick off about 6.30 aiming to form teams and begin hacking by 7pm.
The hack will finish at 8pm to give us an hour for presentations.
At the end we’ll head off to a pub, as yet undefined in the local vicinity. Some mention has been made of finding a decent scotch whisky place – I’m open to ideas! It’s not an area I personally know well though because Skillsmatter recently moved.