Thank You For A Successful 1st DFW VMUG Hackathon!

DFWVMUG_

Thank you to all those who attended!

The DFW VMUG Hackathon on 12/16/2017 was a great experience and if you missed it we hope to see you at one of our 2018 Hackathons.

Also if you want to try and run one for your community, keep reading and the the biggest thing to remember is, “Have Fun and just do it!”

Inspired by many and attending in person the Sept VMworld 2017 Hackathon was a great personal experience for me.  I am very grateful to William Lam & Alan Renouf for setting this up and thanks the VMware{code} Program for supporting the community and sponsoring the event  (Please reach out to current coordinator Elsa Meyer if you have questions regarding the VMware{code} program).

For the DFW VMUG it was “#Game On!” As soon as my friend and vBrownBag LATAM colleague Ariel Sanchez started blogging about it (VMworld Hackathon) and he then through down the gauntlet by kicking off the Pittsburgh #PGHLittleHack.

 

The DFW VMUG Hackathon was held in mid-December at the University of Texas at Dallas, and so I want to give a big shout out to and thank you to the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) and John McConnell for hosting the event on the Richardson Campus.

Also big thanks and kudos to Ryan Clair (VMware/Sponsor) and Troy Lindsay (DFW VMUG Customer Member) for running the event with me, including serving as the team captains and resident Hackathon Experts.

Please see Troy Lindsay’s blog for more details and summary write up of the process, the event and lessons learned.  Also Ryan Clair’s GitHub for the project.

Remember, we cannot over emphasize, “having fun and experimenting!”

Running the DFW VMUG Hackathon was a great learning experience and we had a mixed crowd of geeks, experts and DevOps newbies. The planning and setup took a little over a month and guess what?  There are always challenges, which are just more opportunities to refine the process and shine.  We had to reschedule a couple times, lost our original hosting location.  Just as in role playing game like “Fall Out 4“, or a movie like “Star Wars: The Last Jedi“, Things happen, life goes on and we go on to live and fight another day.  The main thing is to have fun and make it fun for others while all the time learning.  To help you with your Hackathon if you do choose to run one, here are some things to ponder.

Top 10 Things To Consider:

  1. Remember – #1 Have Fun!
  2. Find couple passionate hackathon organizers, decide on venue and optionally get a sponsor for lab resources, venue and food.
  3. Join the VMware{code} Slack Channel and start your journey today, then create your own channel — in our case it was dfw-hackathon
  4. Spread the word to all potential participants/interested parties — we used our VMUG DFW Community page for communication and for registrations, and also leveraged our traditional DFW VMUG Social Media sites.
  5. Decide on best method for communications for both organizers and the newly forming Hackathon Community (slack, skype, texts, etc) and blogging. We did interactive publishing of all information we created using Google Doc. This was a living document and contained several iterations and was used to share all Hackathon Information.
  6. Hold weekly planning meetings up until day of event, this helps keep you on track and helps mitigate issues as they arise.
  7. Decide on which projects to work on and of interest to participants of your hackathon (we also sent out a couple  monkey surveys)
  8. Do a dry run before event to ensure everything works (Internet Access, setting up Accounts, Accessing hackathon resources, power, power strips, etc)
  9. Create Hackathon Project Team Slack sub-Channel on VMware{code} in our case it was #team-conductor and also create GitHub Repository for DFW Hackathon Project.
  10. We were fortunate to have VMware sponsor this event so we had 3 hours of lab access to a couple VMware MyLearn Lab Machines already pre-configured, which saved us a lot of time and issues of setting up a lab on-site.
Note:  VMUG is always innovating and we are hoping to make available a VMUG Global Lab based on VMware Cloud on AWS for future VMUG Hackathons – Stay Tuned to VMUG News Letter Announcements.

The event was a very good first step in the right direction towards our DFW VMUG Community learning DevOps and we look forward to continuing our journey and hosting a couple more Hackathon Events in 2018.

About wmichel

Principal Consultant, vExpert Cloud, VMUG Leader, vBrownBag LATAM, NetApp United, VCP, TOGAF, ITIL, CISSP, USMC, Geek, Mariachi Singer and Dad A seasoned architect and technologist at heart that loves innovation and playing with datacenter virtualization, cloud computing, operating systems and information security.
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