It has been interesting lately to see how WordPress enthusiasts have been finding creative ways to get together. We all know WordCamps and meetups, of course, but in the last months, we’ve seen the birth of the regional WordCamp, BuddyCamp, WordUp (a kind of larger meetup/un-conference), WP Camp, and even WP OnTour (whatever happened to that?).
Given all these variations, is another one needed?
The community in Portugal seems to think it is. Under the guidance of Nuno Morgadinho, from WidgiLabs, a new experiment is about to take place: the WordPress “Residency”.
Think of it as a mixture of the relaxed and informal atmosphere of a meetup, with the duration of a WordCamp, the holiday spirit of WP On Tour and the coding frenzy of a hackday. It’s a 3-day week-end for WordPress enthusiasts to meet and work on code, show each other what they’re working on, ask questions and generally get to know each other. It will take place in the beautiful city of Viana do Castelo, way up in the north of Portugal, from the 17th to the 19th of May. Sessions will be held at the Dinamo10 co-working space, and other social activities will be announced soon. It is mostly geared towards the Portuguese community, but all are welcome, as most in attendance, if not all, speak English.
For 100€, anyone gets to attend the event, and the price includes housing, meals, snacks and coffee breaks, for the duration of the event, which seems more than fair (if you want to make your own housing and meal arrangements, there’s a
30€ 15€ ticket that only includes attendance, snacks and coffee breaks). In the spirit of WordCamps and all meeting formats mentioned above, it is important to note that the philosophy behind the residency is decidedly non-profit – the money goes to cover the expenses.
It’s the perfect example of making things happen quickly, without too much organizational overhead, relying on the WordPress spirit to make it a success.
I’m sure the idea can easily be replicated in other places, each with its particular flavor. Would you attend an event like this in your region? Would you organize one?
Nuno Morgadinho says
Hi Zé, thanks for writing about this.
If anyone is wondering the idea came from Artist-in-residence programs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist-in-residence). Would love also to do a product sprint (http://www.designstaff.org/articles/product-design-sprint-2-2012-10-09.html) during the residency.
Maybe it’s worth mentioning that Viana do Castelo, in the Minho province, has some unique atractions. Not that I’m implying that you can only do this in beautiful places with good food and drink.
It’s cool that there is so much enthusiasm within the wp community globally and like all things that are still in the beginning stages there is bound to be a bit of disorganization. I think that it is important to try to remain united in these wp events. Like you said, do we really need another branch or division in wp community? If the number of different groups continues to grow it is bound to fracture the community and then politics and favoritism can creep and I don’t think anyone wants that. IMHO
Zé Fontainhas says
Looking at the reach that WordPress has these days, and from a purely subjective point of view, I think that fracturing the community is definitely not what’s happening here; the community is growing very quickly in numbers, and it’s getting harder to meet like-minded folk, just to keep abreast of what they are up to. I am all for more events, not less. The fact that they have different names is not so relevant; in the end the mood is the same and the benefits for those who attend are invariably positive.