We're looking for assistance with opening a new kind of self-directed educational center for programmers in the Berkeley area. See the homepage and our event listings for a list of proposed activities.
Our programming school will provide an alternative to conventional coding bootcamps: a high-quality programming education without requiring large amounts of money, advance preparation, or a fixed time commitment. Our model is guided self-study with mentorship from the more experienced members.
Some of the goals of this educational center are to:
- Non-exclusive, without difficult barriers to entry. It's too difficult for many people to get into high-quality programming bootcamps — not necessarily because they don't have the potential to find success in the tech industry, but because the existing models are not ideal for everyone.
- Create a physical space where like-minded people can meet with their laptops to study together, bounce ideas off of each other, and collaborate on projects
- No time limit for attending. Stay as long as you want. The experienced members mentor the beginners.
- Bring together people who are interested in solving problems with Internet technology
- Function as a kind of alternative startup incubator for members' software projects
- Offer interesting classes to members and the public
- Discuss philosophy, especially technology philosophy
- Learn, study, and teach programming skills
- Extra outreach to autistic people, who often have high potential for success in the tech industry, but who face certain types of challenges.
We're looking for a space to rent within a few blocks of a BART station so that it's accessible to people without their own transportation.
The purpose of the space is to do one specific thing very well: facilitate the learning of computer programming.
- It will not exactly be a traditional "hackerspace", but will be centered around studying programming. There won't be the hardware and electronics of traditional hackerspaces/makerspaces. It will mainly focus on studying programming and related topics. (Note: small hardware projects that don't involve soldering, heavy machinery, and noise would be welcome. A goal is keep the space friendly for people who have difficulties with smells and noise.)
- It will not be a "coworking space", because it's not designed around working but is focused on studying.
- The school will be a new kind of self-directed educational center for people who study computer programming.
Benefits for the Community
Here are some of the benefits for the community:
- Provide a place for locals and visitors to learn how to program. Even experienced programmers need to study regularly to stay up to date with technology.
- Bring people together to collaborate on new programming projects and startups.
- Provide a supportive environment for startups in East Bay.
- Provide an inexpensive place where motivated people could learn to program in groups -- studying at the space could even function as a kind of non-traditional job training program for people looking to get into the tech scene.
If interested in the idea, please send us an email and/or leave a comment below.