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Code & Coffee: As Good As Ever!

In the midst of these isolations, shutdowns, social guidelines, and restrictions Code & Coffee is as strong as ever. Maybe even better!

Introduction

Code & Coffees are informal co-working sessions usually hosted by volunteers who invite people from all skill levels to join.

Often these sessions are sponsored by businesses that offer working spaces (conference rooms, staff cafeterias, etc.) and coffee. Bonus, often the businesses also sponsor by providing donuts or bagels, too.

Despite that they are informal, the formats from place-to-place are similar. Somehow the format seems to have caught on across the world. Each Code & Coffee offers some version of the events in the sequence listed below.

If you’ve never been to a Code & Coffee, here is what you need to know.

  • They are informal but there is some structure, too.
  • Most start with a round of introductions where everyone has an opportunity to introduce themselves and the work they do.
  • Also, during the introductions attendees usually explain what they’ll be working on, what they can help others with, and what how or if they might like some help from others.
  • Following introductions, attendees have an opportunity to advertise any positions that are open at their company.
  • Likewise, attendees have an opportunity to advertise themselves if they are currently looking for a new position.

After all of the above, folks get to work. Some locations offer an opportunity at the end of the day for attendees to share what they accomplished which is a great opportunity for feedback from other developers.

I’ve been a frequent Code & Coffee attendee for some time.

Recent Updates: Code & Coffee Continues Better Than Ever

Many Code & Coffee volunteers have taken their events online. Here are notes that will be helpful in finding one or more Code & Coffee opportunities now that we are in the midst of isolations, shutdowns, social guidelines, and restrictions.

Western & Pacific:

Leading the list is the largest and most active group I’ve found based in the Los Angeles California area.

Downtown LA Code and Coffee. Typically meets on Sundays. Some Sundays offer multiple sessions; formerly would have been multiple sessions at multiple locations. But also includes some weekdays. Boasts over 10,000 members.

Code and Coffee — SD. (San Diego). Typically meets on Sundays. Has over 400 members.

Midwest:

STL Coffee Shop Coders. (St. Louis). Typically meets on Sundays. Has a focus on job hunting. Over 300 members.

Seattle C++ Meetup. Has a focus on C++. Typically meets on Mondays (not as common to meet weekdays). Nearly 300 members.

Tech Talent South — New Orleans. Organizes events on a variety of themes. Occasionally hosts Coffee, Code & Conversation events. Has over 2,000 members.

Mid Upper Atlantica Area:

Northern Virginia Code & Coffe (NoVA). Typically meets on Saturdays in Arlington. Rotates specific spots. Over 4,200 members.

DC Code & Coffee. Typically meets on Sundays in DC. Rotates specific spots. Nearly 3,000 members.

Alexandria Code & Coffee. Typically meets on Saturdays in Alexandria Virginia area. Over 3,300 members.

Side note about the history of Code & Coffee in the DC, Maryland, Virginia region. Washington, DC started its events which then led to a spin-off group in Northern Virginia (NOVA). NOVA’s events grew to represent the area’s largest event. After NOVA’s events grew beyond capacity, Alexenadira’s event spun off. And then finally, DC’s event experienced a renewed interest following the successful group of Alexandria's. Also, out of the region is Centreville, VA’s and Baltimore, MD’s. Most of the area’s events meet at slightly different days and times to avoid overlap so folks don’t have to choose which event to attend. I learned this history from one of Alexandria’s organizer’s Sean McBeth.

RVA Code and Coffee. Typically meets on Saturdays. Rotates spots. Nearly 200 members.

Learn To Code RDU. (Hosts Coffee & Code. Also hosts Beer & Code). Event times vary and locations rotate throughout the Raleigh-Durhan-Chapel Hill Research Triangle area.

Image source: WallPaperFlare.com.

Conclusion

This article discussed what Code & Coffee events are and also provides an in-depth overview of their structure. As I’ve written in the past, I’ve been a frequent Code & Coffee attendee for some time.

In the midst of our current range of isolations, shutdowns, social guidelines, and restrictions Code & Coffee is as strong as ever. Many organizers have moved them online. In the online environment, in some ways now, they’re maybe even better!

Code & Coffee events were for a long time a useful as a fun:

  • Place to network.
  • Make work less lonely.
  • Means to find help.
  • Way to give help.
  • Opportunity to focus on being productive.

One last thought: Go with an open mind and be ready to contribute. Like many things. You will get out of Code & Coffee what you put into it.

Thanks For Reading

Thanks for reading. Send me your thoughts and ideas. You can write just to say hey. And if you really need to tell me how I got it wrong I look forward to chatting soon. Twitter: @adamrossnelson LinkedIn: Adam Ross Nelson.

I mentor new (💫) and aspiring data scientists enter (🚪) and level up (📈) in the field. I help data pros find work they love (❤️) and that loves them back.

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