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ACR: A Recap from a Developer

ACR: A Recap from a Developer

Written by Administrator on 26th April 2016, 10:21 PM

In a team meeting late February, co-founders Johanna and Juha brought a big surprise to the Wyncode team: we were all going on a road trip to Hashrocket‘s Ancient City Ruby conference!

Two full days of learning new things, talking about code, meeting cool people, and family road trip shenanigans? Sign us up! What follows is a highlight of the best moments we had at the conference. You’ll get the inside scoop from Sean Sellek, our product & curriculum guru!

Sean’s Ancient City Ruby Recap


Day 0 (Sean’s “Learn to Code” Workshop)

What a blast! Any chance I have to get out there and get people excited about code, I jump on it. Think coding is too hard? Not for you? Boom. Not anymore.

I started with some history on coding (did you know it was all started by a woman and a gay guy?), and we all jumped in and got our hands dirty.

After twenty minutes, attendees were writing code. I even brought my little brother along for good measure. He’s one of our TA’s! That’s him over there, helping a student along with their code.

A few hours of practice, a break for burgers and beer, lots of laughing and learning, plus building some simple games – just like our bootcamp students do in the first week!

Check out some of the results here, here, and here!

Day 1

Favorite Talk

Oh boy. This is a tough one. I have to say there were killer talks ranging from a “Learning About Ruby” point of view, all the way to “Building Computers with Dominoes.” That’s right. Domino computers. Here are my top 3:

1. Lauren Scott made the amazing comparison of code and poetry with her “Shall I Compare Thee to a Line of Code?” talk. What a great analogy! Just like english writing tries to convey meaning to other humans beyond just the words on the page, so does code. A reminder to think about your reader when you’re writing code!
2. Paolo Perrotta blew our minds with “Unconventional Computing”. We think about computers as circuits and silicon, but dominoes, amoebas, and more can all be used to solve any problem too! Maybe we should rethink what it means to be intelligent?
3. Rossta Kaffenberger introduced us to some overlooked areas of Ruby in “Enumerable’s Ugly Cousin“. You think you know so much, but there’s always something new!


Favorite Quote

“Find something weird”

– Kipu Systems CTO Tobias Franoszek laid down some mad knowledge to a Wyncode alumn on a scenic cruise along St. Augustine’s coastline. Todd was asking about advice for finding something to engage other developers with. He felt as a Junior he had nothing to offer all these experienced devs! Tobias mentioned that everybody loves discovering new things and nobody knows everything in this field. “Find something weird” and share it!


Favorite Moment

Dinner! Jo & Juha took the team to the country’s “2nd best Pizza” place (lives up to the hype, btw). Of course, being vegan our lovely cofounders ordered salad at the country’s 2nd best pizza place. Naturally, our lovely server Tari wouldn’t have it. “WHAAT?!” She was shocked. Couldn’t believe it. I believe the word “whimp” was even used at one point (with love of course)!

Day 2

Favorite Talk

This was definitely a code-learning filled day. Sean Griffin’s “Rails 5 Features You Haven’t Heard About” and Kerri MIller’s “SOLID 101: A Review For Rubyists” were both killer talks. Sean, maintainer of ActiveRecord, gave us killer insight into what it takes to manage and work on open source projects. Kerri touched on the fundamentals of proper object oriented programming. Two absolutely not-to-be-missed talks.

Favorite Quote

Tom, CEO of Higher Pixels, gave a lighting talk and killed it. I’m just going to paste the frantic notes I took here:

“There can be a huge misperception of what it takes to get into this space.

There is no shortage of ‘experts’ telling you what your success should look like. But is that success for you? Is that what will make you happy?

This morning, think, what does success look like for me. What would be my perfect day? Share it! Tweet it, tell everybody what success looks like for you, and when you need that reminder, look back at what you wrote. Remind yourself where you’re heading and why you’re chasing that.

People might be more afraid of failure, buts what’s worse is succeeding at the wrong thing. it’s easy to pivot.”

Favorite Moment

Gotta shout out two moments here:

The Code Moment I was sitting quietly after most of the talks were done, coding, just working on a personal project I started the day before. Then, I notice Jason Cummings, one of the senior devs at HashRocket, interested in what I was doing. Long story short, he sat with me and worked with me for nearly an hour. Providing hints, tips, and feedback on the code I had already written. I’m so grateful, this was truly the cherry on top of my entire Ancient City Ruby experience!

The Spooky Moment And finally, I can’t leave out the ghost tours. The entire Wyncode team took a tour of the most haunted areas of St. Augustine, complete with our own EMF meters to detect paranormal activity. We had a blast. Here’s a picture of Jose Fernandez, one of our Instructors, using his EMF meter in the cellar of a 200 year old prison: 


Bonus Warm and Fuzzy Moment The trip came to a perfect end with a team tour of St. Augustine’s Fort de San Marcos. This is what makes Wyncode rock.


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