Key words: women and programming. The combination of the two: Rails Girls. Created in 2010 by Linda Liukas and Karri Saarinen in Helsinki, the Rails Girls movement has been gaining popularity in an ever-increasing number of cities around the world.
In mid-January for the first time, about 40 women got together at the HUB Vienna to learn the basics of the coding language Ruby (read about the kick-off here). Tonight, the organisers of Rails Girls Vienna will follow-up on the original event with, well, the Rails Girls Vienna Follow-up, which will take place in Clusterhaus. You still have time to register, so make sure you do so here.
What is Follow-up #1 all about?
As the name implies, the event will be more of a get-together where all interested – both original Rails Girls participants and newcomers – will discuss feedback from the first two-day workshop as well as ideas and expectations for similar future meetups. While the main event may have been about getting to know Ruby, the follow-up will not deal with much actual coding, main organiser Kerstin Kollmann told inventures.eu. For starters, it will be shorter – about two hours long – and not as the main event “with lots of food in the morning, at midday, and with drinks in the evening,” Kollmann added jokingly. Bottom line: no gala dinner.
Yet, the follow-up seems to be designed with the goal to find out more about the interests and wishes of the female programmers-to-be, and potentially turn into a regular happening.
Follow-up #2, 3, 4?
A series of follow-up events is certainly something the organisers have thought about. “We definitely want to start meeting up more regularly,” Kollmann said. “Women, who want to continue learning Ruby, need to have a platform to do so.” Her main impression from the kick-off in January was that the format fostered collaboration and teamwork, in which more advanced participants were able to bring some of the beginners up to speed.
What seems to drive the project forward in particular, though, is the enthusiasm of the ever-growing community of keen female (amateur-)programmers. Although Rails Girls Vienna took placewith 40 participants, the submitted applications were close to 120. “Many sign up to try it out,” Kollmann said. “Perhaps not many will actually end up in tech, but they could still use the knowledge for smaller projects.”
Meanwhile in Krakow
Speaking of Rails Girls gaining popularity (way back in the first paragraph) in various cities, the most recent two-day workshop took place in Krakow on 19-20 April. It was followed by the second edition of the Railsberry conference on 22-23 April, which was joined by a number of Rails Girls Vienna coaches. Attendee and inventures.eu-contributor Floor Drees noted that about a tenth of all participants were female – “quite unique for a tech event.”
More on Rails Girls Vienna here: https://inventures.eu/women-and-tech-rails-girls-vienna
Anyone interested in joining or creating a Rails Girls event in their own city can access Rails Girls community resources and expertise by submitting their interest on the international Rails Girls website: http://railsgirls.com/