Over the past twelve years, Barcamp has grown from zero to over 1000 attendees; creating the largest one-day technology event in Florida! So what makes it such a big hit, and why are so many people choosing to attend Barcamp events? And more importantly, why should you attend the next one on October 5th, 2019? Aside from Suncoast Developers Guild giving away a free part-time class at this event, here are five other benefits you can gain from attending Barcamp:
1. Gain the opportunity to teach and learn from others
One of the main reasons people love it is because of how unique Barcamp is. Anyone from the community has the opportunity to speak and share their knowledge. They highlight innovators, developers, entrepreneurs, startups, makers, robotics, team, students, and members of the local community. It’s the only open organization designed for sharing, learning, networking, and building a better tech community. They embrace all other local tech organizations, meetups, hackathons, and people who use technology to power their businesses, remote employees, and freelancers.
Barcamp is put on by Technova Florida, Inc. which is a 501c3 not-for-profit. Technova is run entirely by volunteers who are dedicated to connecting, educating and growing the local technology community. They're led by serial technology entrepreneurs and industry professionals who are passionate about making our region shine. Technova puts on the most well-attended technology events in Florida, setting world records for both Barcamp and Ignite events!
2. Keep your skillset up to date
The goal of Barcamp is not simply the number of attendees but the quality of the content. Technova prides itself on meeting the needs of the community, and this is clearly seen by so many community members' ongoing participation in events.
As you probably know, technology changes at a rapid pace. Barcamp focuses on new and emerging technologies and all coding languages to keep you up to date. They also cover the disciplines and innovations that support these technologies such as user experience design, social media, web development and design, and more. The presentations are designed to meet the needs of the local community but more specifically, the needs of startups, students, and entrepreneurs.
3. Expand your network
Sure, you can add connections just through LinkedIn but meeting someone face to face allows you to get to know someone personally and make a lasting connection. Barcamp is a great networking opportunity because of the diverse crowd who have different areas of expertise. Just to give you a better idea, here's who attended Barcamp 2018:
- Software Developers
- Graphic Designers
- User Experience Designers
- Marketing and Social Media Gurus
- Technology Executives- CEO, CIO, CISO’s from the largest tech companies in Florida
- College Professors and other educators
- IT professionals
- Students K-12 and Collegiate
- Local and state-level politicians
- Small Business Owners
- Media ranging from Tech Crunch, Tampa Bay Times, Tampa Bay Business Journal, Florida Trend, Creative Loafing, Bay News 9, Florida Tech Journal, 83 Degrees, and more
4. Grow your own career and the tech industry
Consistently attending events where you can learn and be surrounded by like-minded people will bring new life and inspiration. If you stay surrounded only by the same connections and the same ideas, things can be a bit stagnant.
By showing up, speaking, or maybe even just listening to the Barcamp presentations, you're helping to further build out our tech community. Everyone is welcome to this event and the open sharing of ideas is truly the only way to grow a thriving technology and startup community. Take a closer look into Barcamp 2018 to get a better idea of what to expect:
- 120 presentations, 7 panels, and numerous robotics and 3D printing demos
- 31 demonstrations by Tampa Hackerspace and Tampa and the Tampa Bay Inventors Council
- Quadcopters were used to create videos that we pushed live at the event
- 829 attendees plus approximately 128 students and 103 walk up attendees
- 23% were first time attendees to Barcamp exceeding the goal of 10% growth YoY
- Each of the 200+ technology meetups in our region is represented at Barcamp
5. Establishing new connections and brand awareness for your company
Sponsorship fundraising has, in the past, focused on each particular event. Based on feedback from our community and sponsors, a request was made to create annual sponsorship levels so that sponsors could show their support for all of the events throughout the year.
Here’s what you get as an annual sponsor:
- Name recognition from the tech community
- Connections at the grassroots level to the people in the community
- Thought leadership
- Help in building a larger, more vibrant tech community
- Enabling and sustaining regional tech community growth