Brighton Digital Festival
So, another Brighton Digital Festival has been and gone. I made it out for three events during the month of pixelly stuff that Wired Sussex curated, and whilst I'm definitely biased about one of them, all were fun.
First up was the Brighton Web Awards, which has really grown up since its Virtual Festival roots. I've missed the last couple of these and subsequently had no idea it was so proper'n'glitzy - they had a red carpet and everything. Tara from Wired Sussex and Mark of SCIP fame ably compered ("dining out" indeed, Mark!), I spotted folks from most of the Brighton scene lurking around (and even argued drunkenly with a few of them). A personal high point was Soph's winning the Best Personal Site category, and going on to win the audience vote for Best of Show... so in keeping with the spirit of text voting scandals this year, FP provided the mechanic for the audience vote: a virtual dolphin race powered by SMS messages, and brought to life through the awesome talent of Mr Rieger.
Later I think we had a crowd of people back to Rosehill. Things become blurry around then, I think we dissolved the memories in vodka.
Much more sober and twice as random was Hack Day, put together by Paul Silver and held at the Brighthelmstone Centre. For this we had a team of coding dojo veterans and devoted ourselves to one of the most obscure combinations of technology I've ever been involved with: a text adventure game written for the day hooked up to a web server, a temperator sensor and RFID reader. Somehow we managed to balance a plot on top of all this and got the various bits of tech (Inform 7, web server, SFTP server, Java Robot classes, RFID reader, USB temperature sensor, a load of custom Java serial code and probably some other bits I've forgotten about) working towards a more-or-less-coherent goal... all run over 3-4 hours, obviously in an Agile fashion :)
And on the subject of Agile... Joh and I gave a talk about it at Skillswap last week. She covered off the thinking underlying agile, its history and an overview of why it all works, I blathered on about our experiences adopting it, messing it up, learning from our mistakes and actually starting to do useful stuff with it over the last 4-5 years at FP. I hope it made sense to anyone there; it'll be interesting to do another event like this in a few months when we're a bit further into Scrum (tomorrow is the end of our first 2-week sprint)...
All great fun!