The story of Codecamp begins 12 years ago. And because no great story begins with eating a salad, Codecamp’s begins with three friends drinking beer. These three friends, let’s call them Florin, Dan and Gabriel, working in the growing IT scene of the town built on seven hills for some years now, realized that there was a thing missing from their professional and personal lives.
That thing was a tight-knit community, where everyone interested would have access to knowledge. Way back then, there weren’t many places where people could share their experiences. Sure, there was the occasional meet-up or company gathering, but besides that, the IT professionals were on their own.
Being three capable engineers, they attacked this problem head-on and came up with the perfect solution: a conference. They could pull it off, right?
Florin, the loudest, pushiest person you will ever have the honor of meeting, but with the great ability to get under one’s skin, Dan, the silent, analytical type, pulling the financial strings from the shadows, making sure everything is running smoothly and Gabriel, the stoic, more serious than a heart attack developer, that would make sure the content of each conference is up to his high standards, set off into the sunset to make the best IT Conference in Iasi, to start with, and then take over Romania.
And so begins their story, and implicitly, the story of their baby (modern family, not a traditional one), that they named Codecamp. Why Codecamp you ask? Well, because it’s like a camp for coders. If you were hoping for a better story, sorry to disappoint you.
It was the year 2008, and the year of the first Codecamp event ever. Emotions were running high, excitement was in the air, and our three protagonists, with the help of some lifetime friends, managed to pull off something incredible. Not only was the conference a success, but there actually was a community growing around it.
Year after year, Codecamp grew in one, more than others would in five. And soon, it became the place to be if you had anything to do with the IT scene in Iasi. You already knew where all of your friends and colleagues were going to be the Saturday that Codecamp took place. From the moment you step in the venue, on a Codecamp Saturday, you are confronted with a swarm of people of all ages. It may take you more than 15 minutes to get from the ground floor to the conference rooms. If you want to make a pit stop for coffee, be prepared and warned. It will take some time. Why go through it then? Why give up your Saturday to fight your way through thousands of people and probably get your toes stepped on more than once? Easy. Because it’s where you can be part of an awesome community. It’s the place where you can meet people you admire and look up to, it’s the place where you can see what new exciting things companies are doing, it’s the place where you can build friendships and relations, it’s the place where you can learn. It’s home, it’s family, it’s you.
The next stop in the plan for national domination for the three musketeers was of course Cluj-Napoca. A vibrant city with an ever-growing IT scene, it seemed natural for Codecamp to come here and try to create the same community feeling. And that they did. In only a couple of years, The Cluj Codecamp community reaches thousands of people each edition. Two down, a lot more to go.
Fast forwarding to 2017. The year Codecamp turned 10. Fast right? And what better way to celebrate it then with ten conferences in one year? Some said it was crazy, that it could not be done. Well, nobody puts Codecamp in a corner. Welcome on board Timisoara, Chisinau, Bacau, Suceava, Baia Mare and Piatra Neamt!
By now, Florin “Loud Mouth” Cardasim, Dan “Show me the money” Nicola and Gabriel “The Brains” Enea started to feel the growing pressure of running the show on their own. So by the end of the year, enter Andreea and Catalina. If you attended any Codecamp conference in the past two years, you must have seen a tiny redhead running around, always looking like she is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. That’s Andreea. Like the founding fathers, she became part of the heart and soul of Codecamp. And the little not-so-blond-anymore one, being agitated on the other side of the room? That’s Catalina.
With fresh meat for the slaughter, Codecamp set sail for its 11th year of existence. You thought 10 conferences was hard? Try 12. Welcome on board Bucharest!. And by the end of the year, the Codecamp family grew with two more. The youngsters Madalina and Bianca.
And here we are, at the beginning of 2019. It has been quite the journey so far. Codecamp became a place of learning and community, for all those eager to better themselves. That is why we want to be better. Because we know that you deserve the best. It was time for a change. A new look for the same story. After all, it’s about what happens next_
Also, a huge thank you to the unsung heroes, that believed in Codecamp and that sacrificed their personal time and their energy to help out. You know who you are and we are eternally grateful.
Here you can see the new story through Alex’s from Namogo eyes.