15 May 2015

Breaking it down:

Scrumikanbanagilisticxpleanidocious is a word I dreamed up, this is its story.

It sounds like: supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

This wonderful word enters many english-speakers vocabulary at an early age thanks to that great coach, Mary Poppins. Even though the sound of it is something quite atrocious.

For those who (sadly) missed Disney's musical gem, here's a refresher:
Reporter: There probably aren't words to describe your emotions.

Mary Poppins: Now, now, now, now, gentlemen, please. On the contrary, there's a very good word. Am I right, Bert?

Bert: Tell 'em what it is.

agile/lean mashings

I was in-flight from Cape Town to Barcelona to give a talk on contracts at the  ALE unconference (yes, back in 2012), overflowing with enthusiasm.

Looking forward to a mash-up of great people in the European Agile and Lean worlds, I had a think about what we were doing as an industry.

There is a lot going on, with different schools of thought coming together, clashing, dancing, growing.

We each choose a particular subset of them all to find a way to create great software.

"There probably aren't words to describe it all"

But, "On the contrary, there's a very good word. It's...


Bringing together:

(even though the sound of it is something of a process).

And that's what we do: a weird & wonderful mash-up portmanteau of the bits that fit from what we find in the toolboxes of others.

I was so taken with it that I stood up in front of a room of people, many of whom I admired, but (mostly) hadn't met and said it as the first lightning talk. That was the start of a very #alesome conference.

Enjoy the word, use it for awesome.


Posted on Friday, May 15, 2015 by David Campey

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12 May 2015

A few years back I met a young soul exploring software development. He had programmed some robots, learnt some python and gotten himself to a python conference to meet other geeks.

His name was Sam, he was 10. And he needed someone to help him get unstuck and take the next steps.

I really, really wanted to teach youngsters coding.

By this stage, I'd seen too many well-meaning attempts die in analysis paralysis trying to figure out a curriculum, where to recruit learners etc, et cetera ad nauseam.

Just do it

Instead, I said: "Why don't you come to my office for 2 hours on a Tuesday afternoon? I'll help you where you get stuck."

A few years later and up to 15 (fifteen) 7-14 year-olds (seven to fourteen year-olds) come to our boardroom every Tuesday for coderdojo.

Our neighbours Esteq have offered up their boardroom for overflow, which is amazing.


It is (lightly) organised chaos, in the manner of a self-organised learning environment. It closely mirrors professional software development.

We do a standup (what did you do last week, what will you do this week, who wants to help) and emotional check-in (using charts4hearts) to kick off each class. Then the kids pair/swarm to find interesting things to do. Sweets are at 4pm or for completing collaboratively-chosen missions.


coderdojo (coderdojo.com) "free coding clubs for young people": It's a thing, and when I looked at it, found that it's similar to what we do, so we signed up and took up their flag.

Our dojo page is at zen.coderdojo.com/dojo/113.


We have no official syllabus, but a collection of activities. Over time, this has evolved into:

Next steps

We've reached the limit of what we can do in our boardroom (overflowed already) and what I can personally do. We have:
  • a great uchi deshi (back room) WhatsApp channel with keen helpers 
  • an agreement from the CEO at an epic company in the Waterfront to run one at their training room. 
  • a keen facilitator in the southern suburbs to train including kids from the Cape Flats 
  • a school in Sea Point looking to start a coding club 
  • a potential venue at the Science Centre 

If you're in Cape Town, come collaborate with us, (check out our dojo page for details) this is your invitation.

If you're somewhere else in the world and you want to get involved, check out coderdojo.com for a dojo near you.

Posted on Tuesday, May 12, 2015 by David Campey

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10 April 2015

We've gotten together again (a little under two years later) to do some more work on codespeed2.

 - unassisted deploy by Maciej
 - get the runner working with the new json data format (protocol v1) (yay)
 - some niggly bug fixes

Matt has put together screenshots based on submission of the first new runner result (against the two-year old data dump we used for testing).

Home page

Inline images 3

Changes from last known revision in old data dump (pretty old)

Inline images 4

Nice spiky timing data :)

Inline images 1

The history of that module (also based on old testing data dump)

Inline images 2

Now we just need to set up the nightlies and see more continuous data :)

Posted on Friday, April 10, 2015 by David Campey

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