Decentralise all the things!

by Alex Scotton

A community, for the community, by the community. That's the philosophy!

I'd like to take some time to talk about this. To get the ideas out there and share the aspiration with the community.

It's been said before, but it bears repeating: When Shaun and I grabbed the reins from Paul it was in ignorance, it took us some time to get up to speed and the Conference was a much needed deadline and a baptism of fire. It served as a very quick introduction to sourcing talks and organising events for the community.

It was stressful, but unbelievably rewarding! The feedback we received and seeing everyone, together, exchanging their stories and experience was great. The network that this community creates is phenomenal and immensely powerful, not only bringing together people working in the industry to help and learn from each other, but also inspiring those cursed with the ever present impostor syndrome to take the leap and apply for both their first role and their next!

We followed that into lockdown with another learning exercise: Virtual Events. In 2020 we've been physically distanced but we have aspired not to be socially distanced, ensuring that no-one was too far away from help, support, or a friendly face. Increasingly over the course of 2020 it became clear that Norfolk Developers could not only serve as a place to exchange knowledge but also be the watercooler around which an increasingly isolated community could come together.

Over the course of this year our idea to make the community more and more decentralised has taken fruition!

Looking forward to how we get there, you may have noticed the @nordev-event-bot yelling occasionally on Discord. Or, the fairly pre-formatted Social Media posts? We have been making strides towards the automations required.

Let's Go Build a Bot

Dom spent January’s #WednesdayStreams building the foundation of @nordev-event-bot#v2. This was extended into February to kick off 2021 with a focus.

Let's build those Tools together!

Behind @nordev-event-bot is some software driving the social media posts and the bot’s occasional yells. It also holds a catalogue of our events and a schedule for posting about them. It’s a foundation. Next we need a Member system and a way of enabling those members to subscribe to custom notifications and publishing their own events. Seen something that interests you? We want you to have the autonomy and tools to bring it to the wider community.

TL;DR: We're increasingly moving toward a self organising community. We're building the tools we need; enabling any member of the community to add an event to the calendar and automatically publishing to social channels.