Saturday I attended Word Camp YYC. For those of you who haven’t heard of it before, it’s basically a day (or weekend in some cases) about all things WordPress. I use it for this blog. Word Camps happen all over the world. We were sharing the weekend with Word Camps in Chicago and Hamburg.
There were speakers, panel discussions, and I got to meet all kinds of great people who were also attending. I’m not sure how it is at other Word Camps, but this one was divided into two tracks – code creators and content creators. You could switch between the two tracks and go to the talks that you were the most interested in. The cost to attend was $25, which I think is pretty affordable considering you’re there all day learning and they feed you lunch.
It was held on the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology campus, which I thought was a great choice of venue. It’s fairly central, there was lots of parking since it was the weekend, and there’s a train station really close by. Getting there was super easy.
I’d only been to SAIT once before when my brother had a presentation there years ago. Even though I was unfamiliar with the campus, Word Camp was easy to find between the maps they had online and the signs they had set up. We spent a good chunk of the day in an absolutely beautiful room.
Registration was quick and easy. I picked up my name tag, swag and found a spot to sit at a table inside in under 5 minutes. I was impressed at how organized they were. I ended up at a table with three other bloggers, which was pretty nice. Two of whom were travel bloggers. What are the chances of that randomly happening? The rest of the people at the table we more into the back end of things – coders or designers.
There were close to 150 people who attended, which was a pretty nice number. It didn’t feel too big and overwhelming. I’m not very good at networking or making small talk, and I didn’t feel uncomfortable. Blogging for me is a pretty solitary thing (usually it’s just me and my computer), so spending some time with people who are into the same thing was pretty cool.
If you’re thinking about going to a Word Camp I would really encourage you to go, whether you’re a blogger or build with WordPress. I talked to quite a few people who said they learned lots. Getting out of my comfort zone wasn’t nearly as scary as I thought it was going to be.
If you’re interested in finding out if there’s a Word Camp happening near you, check out Word Camp Central. For video and slides of talks given at previous Word Camps (there’s so much great information there), click over to wordpress.tv. And lastly, I want to thank Reg Tiangha (site and twitter) for all the photos in this post. He was the photographer and was generous enough to allow us to use them. Thanks!