Coworking and Coding – Starting ‘em Young
This week, the Canberra Code Cadets made the trek to California from Australia and discovered coworking and accelerated serendipity at the LiquidSpace/Turnstone Collaboration Zone at MacWorld | iWorld 2012.
The Code Cadets, an Apple iOS developer club, was started by teacher Matthew Purcell of Australia’s Canberra Grammar School as a way to introduce programming to students. The teens meet on weekends and evenings, learning the in’s and out’s of Objective C and the iOS Development Environment, with the goal of getting an app into the AppStore. They raised funds for a pilgrimage to California and timed the trek to coincide with MacWorld 2012.
After touring Silicon Valley, including visits to the Apple and Google campuses, they came to MacWorld, hitting the exhibit floor and panel sessions. But like most conference attendees, they also need to relax, recharge, and reconnect (see How To: Actually Get Something Done at SXSW). Fortunately for these budding entrepreneurs, they found respite in the MacWorld Coworking Zones.
At the request of MacWorld/iWorld conference organizer, IDG World Expo, LiquidSpace and Turnstone, a Steelcase brand dedicated to small business, created two coworking zones in the midst of the MacWorld milieu, curated by SF’s NextSpace and Boston’s ThinkSide and Ars Magna. Attendees at the conference were encouraged to download the LiquidSpace app to get real-time access to hundreds of venues around the SF Bay Area. Outfitted for comfort, collaboration, and coworking, the zones proved popular to the crowds including the Canberra Code Cadets.
“This is fantastic, so much better than sitting on a floor!” described Andrew Gray, teacher and mentor for the Code Cadets while skyping, checking email, and advising. “We’re coming back everyday!”
Coworking is about serendipity as well as comfort. Code Cadets Shashi and Nick traded iOS development tips with Michael Portis (@ablackonamac) and former MacAddict Army member. Shashi is writing an arcade app while Nick is working on a statistics app for the only sport that matters, Australian Rules Football. Be sure to look for both of these apps hitting the top of the charts in the AppStore soon!