Category Archives: Announcements

#devTO HOHOTO Giveaway!

With the holidays coming, we’re looking to drop the keyboards and boogie with the rest of our Toronto community. The party? This year’s #HOHOTO shindig hosted by Daily Bread Food Bank! That being said: we’ve got a few tickets to give out to our #devTO members as a ‘Thanks For Coming Out’. And you’re thinking it’s gonna be THAT easy? HA!

We’ve got RULES for this twitter giveaway:

- wear your #DevTO tshirt and take a pic! (if you don’t have a #DevTO t-shirt then Photoshop it)
- put on something festive; santa hat, Rudolph nose, mistletoe, etc
- post picture on twitter with “Look at me @devto_ca #DevTO being all festive #HohoTO

We’ll select a random winner this Friday at 4pm by the power of TwitterTwitterChickenDinner.com! Entries will also be posted to the site!

Can’t wait to see you do something that just ISN’T code!

Mentions of #devTO in the Community

Our friends in the Toronto developer community have been shouting out #devTO quite alot recently. Some more notable than others. Especially two that stuck out greatly:

Mark Reale, of Bnotions, topped his #AndroidTO shout out with his Popplet map of the Toronto Tech Community Events. Some of the most notable monthly events are here, including their sites and who to tweet to! Impressive work, man!

Also, Hack For A Cause had given us a shout out on Facebook HQ wall. I wonder who could have done THAT… hmmmmmm

Anyway, we’re glad to have Toronto’s back in the industry and look forward to meeting/drinking/coding/war-story-sharing/hanging with you all.

#DevTO 7: Speaker lineup

#DevTO 7 broke some new grounds – first, we sold out in around 24 hours; usually it takes us a week or so to fill our 50 spots. Second, we added a couple of new sponsors bringing our total to 5 sponsors for November. Say hello to HeadStart Solutions and GelaSkins that join Rypple, ThinkWrap and Richmond Day in their quest to support the Toronto developer community.

Atendy Profile Pictures: Please remember to update your profile with a picture, name and description – these will get printed on lanyards and you can pick them up when you arrive. ALSO…first 15 to arrive with pictures on their Atendy lanyards get free #DevTO TShirts.

Want to present at a #DevTO? Just send us an email at talks@devto.ca

Speakers

Farhan Thawar, VP Engineering at Xtreme Labs Inc.

Named one of “Toronto’s Top 25 Most Powerful People In 2010”, Farhan is a well-known and respected figure in the city’s tech community. Before joining the Xtreme team, Farhan held the positions of Chief Software Architect at I Love Rewards, the Head of Search & MSN Platform for Microsoft Canada and Technical Lead at Trilogy Software. In addition to being a programming and engineering guru for Xtreme Labs, Farhan also uses his wealth of industry and mobile expertise to mentor aspiring mobile and tech startups. Farhan has a degree in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo and an MBA in Financial Engineering from Rotman.

Managing an Agile Engineering Team. As the VP of Engineering at Xtreme Labs, Farhan has dealt with his fair share of programming dudes and divas. From project inception to the final build release, Farhan doesn’t miss a beat. Along with hiring world-class engineers, Farhan is also tasked with matching them to the appropriate project. Navigating personal preferences for platform-specific projects can be difficult, but with a certain level of persuasion anything is possible. His previous work experience in both small (I Love Rewards), and large (Microsoft Canada) work environments has allowed him to develop an effective management style for Agile Engineers in a start-up environment.

 

 


Wes Bos, Founder at DealPage

Wes is an independent Designer and Developer from Toronto with a passion for cutting edge web technologies. Wes spends most of his time hacking on JavaScript, his library of choice being jQuery. More recently Wes has focused his time on some of the new guys to the JavaScript scene including HTML5, NodeJS, and Backbone.js. Wes has a strong background in PHP development and loves WordPress to no end. You can check out his online tutorials at www.wesbos.com and follow him at http://Twitter.com/wesbos.

HTML5 Canvas. Wes will introduce us to one of the hottest parts of HTML5: the canvas element. Canvas is a blank slate which can be used to programatically draw, animate and manipulate pixels. There are many uses for Canvas from face detection to the next genere of online games. Canvas will show up to Flash’s funeral, only to sink a nail into its coffin.

This month’s #DevTO is brought to you by:

Headstart Solutions is a technology talent acquisition agency that combines digital media, employer and personal branding to complement great candidates with great employers.

 

GelaSkins The best skins on the planet! GelaSkins are removable covers for protecting and customizing your portable devices. They feature stunning, photo-quality graphics ranging from fine art prints to contemporary urban images designed by our growing family of artists from around the globe. Stand out in the crowd with personalized protection from GelaSkins.

 

 

 

Rypple is a social performance platform built for teams to share goals, recognize great work, and help each other improve. With Rypple, performance management becomes painless and effective.

 


ThinkwrapA team of outstanding software developers, engineers, architects, strategists, and designers whose ability to create responsive web environments serving 100,000 users doesn’t stop them from architecting for millions as if they were one.Our strong community of purpose is built on our clients’ lasting business success.

Richmond Day is a full-service marketing and design agency committed to partnering with clients to further promote and develop their brands.
Through our innovative ideas and creative strategies, we have successfully implemented numerous campaigns and tactics to assist the world’s largest brands in increasing awareness, sales and positioning in their respective markets.

You don’t just write code

About a year ago, I realized that after having worked in the Internet industry in Toronto for almost 15 years (yes, since 1996), that I had very little actual involvement in the developer community around the city, and actually, I wasn’t even really sure if there was one that applied to me.  I’ve certainly seen people talk about going to language or technology specific user groups, but there was nothing just for people that were developers, just to get together and share stuff, because hey, you don’t just write code.

The act of writing code is the end result of a lot of other kinds of work, planning, task breakouts, negotiations with customers, bosses, designers and other developers.  We struggle with understanding the customers problems (where else can you work for a bank, a major car manufacturer and a major retailer all within the span of a year?) and how best to solve those problems with code.  Once you start peeling back the layers what we do becomes more complicated than it seems.  This is not to say that the complication is a bad thing, it’s part of what we do, no avoiding that!

And this is where the “You don’t just write code” part of DevTO came from, a realization that we do a whole hell of a lot more than spend hours upon hours banging out line after line of code behind a computer.  We are people that contribute in more ways then we usually get recognized, and that’s one of the things that I felt was missing in my life as a developer.

Scratch your itch

One of the things I’ve learned over the years when it comes to building products, is to scratch your own itch.  That is, to solve a problem that you personally have as a gateway to building or doing something that solves a problem for a lot of people, and for me, DevTO was exactly that, a way to solve problem(s) I was having, and once I started talking to a couple of people about it (my amazing co-founders) I quickly found out that this was an idea shared by more people around the city than just me.

The past 7 months have provided more than I ever imagined in terms of what I was looking for when I first starting talking to Kevin, Nael and Jo about this idea a year ago. Speaking personally, it’s been amazing for me to get connected to others in my community and to find some exciting opportunities that have really gotten me out of a but of a rut professionally.  It’s actually amazing that I spend very little time actually doing development when it comes to DevTO, but it’s had such a positive impact on that part of my life none the less.

Thank you

I can honestly say that I did not expect to be talking about planning our 7th event, much less talking about some bigger and better things we will be doing (in the new year!).  I’m confident that I can speak on behalf of all of the co-founders at DevTO and say thank you to all of the attendees, speakers and sponsors who have taken DevTO from a small idea and turned it into an amazing recurring monthly event.

If you have any comments, suggestions or feedback feel free to send me an email (jonezy@devto.ca) or get in touch with me on twitter @jonezy

Jo Handy Thoughts – Toronto Developer Community

As you may know by now, I co-organize DevTO with Nael, Chris and Kevin. I am probably the most opposite and have the least amount experience in coding of the talented group. To be honest the extent of coding is theblinktag for me. The purpose of me joining this group is to bring my event organizing experience to the helm of 3 pretty darn good coders. I have enough experience in organizing events from big to small with my work experience. I’ve also organized over 40 tweetups and love the social aspect of these type of events. I’m hoping to bring a mix of devs and regular people who do not code into the mix to learn. It’s also a great way to learn about myself and working as a team which has been rewarding. We’ve actually had a surprising increase in “females” joining our events which is a good thing for the developer community as a whole and our attendance and interest continues to increase.

That being said, it’s great to have DevTO as part of the Developer community to help encourage learning and build synergies and networks of developers, designers and much more. With many other events in Toronto such as “Ladies Learning Code” and “AndroidTO” of recent this bodes well for Toronto Tech community. DevTO is giving many a free opportunity to learn from industry experts, meet with recruiters and give first time presenters the chance to present and gain experience in a casual atmosphere. The most favourable thing about the DevTO sessions is the sense of community and helpfulness of those that attend. There seems to be a friendly collaboration in learning which is the opposite of others in such places as Silicon Valley. We hope to continue and evolve DevTO as technology changes. If you ever have suggestion or want to contribute please let us know.

 

Thanks for following DevTO and see you at the next event! :-)

 

Joallore Alon

#DevTO Sprint 6 is here!

Yes it is here – October 24th is coming up! Each #DevTO is a milestone in its own, but numero 6 is a big one and we are extremely happy with the progress being made here, the high quality of the quick talks, our great attendees.

We are also grateful to our newest sponsors who you are going to meet on Monday as well: ThinkWrap, Rypple & Richmond Day, as well as our previous sponsors: PopChips, StickerYou, Social Tactics, Tundra Technical & Richmond Day.

Anyway, Sprint 6 is here, what do we have in store for you?

Speakers

Shey Sewani from FreshBooks
He’s a coder @ FreshBooks, bike nerd and TechTalksTO co-founder. Sheheryar grew up in the concrete jungles of Space City and is now living his dream in Toronto. A self-described geek, usually found behind a computer monitor or a camera lens, Sheheryar is a University of Houston graduate with degrees in Computer Science and Business. His experience includes developing mission critical systems and algorithmic trading. In his free time he blogs, rides his bike around town and tries to hack the market.

Shey will be presenting RabbitMQ at FreshBooks.

Alex Stobe from The Laudi Group
Alex Stobe is a Researcher/Recruiter at the Laudi Group, an Executive Search & Recruitment Consulting firm that focuses on Southern Ontario’s emerging tech sector. He has conducted industry & salary research for The Laudi Group’s publication, RedCanary.ca and filled technical positions ranging from entry level to Vice President and General Manager. Companies he’s worked with range from Venture-backed teams of 5 to $100MM+ publicly traded companies that have maintained their startup culture.

At #DevTO 6 he will show you how to maximize your relationships and accelerate your career through networking.

We hope you enjoy these 2 “quickies” next Monday and we are looking forward to another great sprint!

See you then,

#DevTO Folks

This month’s #DevTO is brought to you by:


 

 

Rypple is a social performance platform built for teams to share goals, recognize great work, and help each other improve. With Rypple, performance management becomes painless and effective.


ThinkwrapA team of outstanding software developers, engineers, architects, strategists, and designers whose ability to create responsive web environments serving 100,000 users doesn’t stop them from architecting for millions as if they were one.Our strong community of purpose is built on our clients’ lasting business success.

Richmond Day is a full-service marketing and design agency committed to partnering with clients to further promote and develop their brands.
Through our innovative ideas and creative strategies, we have successfully implemented numerous campaigns and tactics to assist the world’s largest brands in increasing awareness, sales and positioning in their respective markets.




 

 

Anyway, make sure you RSVP and we hope to see you out there!

Thinkwrap and Rypple Join #devTO’s Sponsorship Team

 

Our list of sponsors has grown again this time with two from our constantly expanding audience. Thank you Rypple and ThinkWrap for supporting us in bringing this event to the Toronto Dev community!

After last month’s success, #devTO is on the verge of getting the sixth edition down.Thanks to Mark Reale and Khori Armstrong of Bnotions, and Craig Wilson. for their presentations, #devTO Sprint 5 was quite inspiring! After a surprising fifth, we’ve decided to go at it again this month!

Rypple is a social performance platform built for teams to share goals, recognize great work, and help each other improve. With Rypple, performance management becomes painless and effective.

ThinkwrapA team of outstanding software developers, engineers, architects, strategists, and designers whose ability to create responsive web environments serving 100,000 users doesn’t stop them from architecting for millions as if they were one.Our strong community of purpose is built on our clients’ lasting business success.

And of course, Richmond Day for coming in with the venue support, as always!

- The #devTO folks.

 

#DevTO Sprint 5 – Sept 26th Announcement!

The fifth installment of #devTO is approaching! With each iteration, we’re trying out brand new things and making the event more unique to all crowds! Everything’s the same in terms of logistics:

- This is happening on the last Monday of the month(September 26th) on the usual time at the usual place – 6:30pm at the design shop Richmond Day.  Also, we’ve got two amazing quickies this round, also!

Right – BUT – we’ve got a change to the registration: #DevTO will be using the Atendy’s system!  We’ve also have a special announcement, too! Be sure to sign up and join us at the next #devto!

 

 

Big thanks to popchips, StickerYou, Social Tactics, Tundra Technical, & Richmond Day

First there were 6, then there were 12, on Monday we are hoping there will be 50. For the first 3 months it was the co-founders chipping in for drinks and pizza for everybody, but as we get more people out we understand we need to have some sponsors to help us out along the way.

Thanks to our first four sponsors that helped us with making #DevTO that much better for our attendees. Here’s a little bit about each sponsor:

popchips. They’re delicious and healthy! That’s hard to combine inside a bag of chips – but these guys did it, and they have sent us boxes of them for our attendees to snack on on Monday.

StickerYou. Big thanks to Joseph Puopolo and Nicole Simone for helping us out with #DevTO stickers. They turned out great and everybody is going to get one! StickerYou’s are high quality, removable, vinyl and custom stickers that everybody loves.

SocialTactics. Sue Varty and Marc Roginsky have graciously given our attendees discounts to their social media & personal branding workshops this month. They are also presenting for a second time this Monday. It was a hit last month, and we are so happy to have them back.

Tundra Technical is among North America’s leading providers of Information Technology and Engineering staffing and consulting services. These guys are helping us out with other expenses such as the food.

Thanks you all!!

         

 

 

O f course we cannot forget our hosts Richmond Day for offering us their amazing space every last Monday of the month for the past 4 months. Thank you so much guys!!

 

The #DevTO crew

 

What’s #DevTO?

#DevTO is a monthly meetup for Toronto developers & designers that happens every last Monday of the month. We meet up once a month and listen to others present, chat about our work with different technologies and basically try to learn a new thing or two from someone else.

#DevTO started out with @kevinkvs and @jonezy thinking about the need to have a regular meet up for developers in Toronto to share and learn from each other. I first heard of this idea on Twitter from Chris and was immediately intrigued and offered to help out. @clickflickca also joined in later on the fun and brings his experience organizing and running other events around Toronto. [Continue reading @naelshawwa’s take on #DevTO on his blog]

Cherly and Melissa attended #DevTO last month. Here’s their take on the event from a PR perspective:

What is it that attracts so many people to get together and talk about social media, LinkedIn or JavaScript? Is it @clickflickca, the free pizza and beer, or are people honestly interested in hearing about these topics? Well Melissa and I decided to go to our first#devTO tweetup on Monday night and were pleasantly surprised at how much we learnt, and even happier about the amount of great people we got to connect with. A big thanks to ALL the organizers of #devTO!

We are both believers of the power of networking. Networking allows you to meet new people and promote your own personal brand – who doesn’t love talking about themselves? And, what made the night even better was interacting with people from different industries who were just as passionate about their careers. It was a room filled with great energy! [Continue reading their PeRspective on PRetty and PRimal]

Shanta attended a couple of our #DevTO meetups – her first was when she was the only woman out of 6 attendees – include four organizers; @naelshawwa, @kevinkvs, @clickflickca and @jonezy… : ) This is her take on her experience at #DevTO:

I attended the second #DevTO session held at Richmond Day. I read a tweet about it and though it might be a good way to network and meet some new people. I knew some of the people involved more than the event itself, so though I wasn’t sure what to expect, I knew it would be great.

This particular time, I was the only woman out of 6 people; four organizers, one presenter and me. It was marketed not only to developers specifically, but also to anyone who has an interest or deals with developers. I’ve done a bit of coding in my time and work as an IT Generalist, so I deal with developers, designers and more acting as a translator between the technical types and the business types.

An event like this helps me understand what developers face and perhaps help my clients by asking the right questions the first time, hence saving time and becoming more efficient. [Continue reading Shanta’s experience on her blog]

Finally we have Kevin’s thoughts on this. Remember #DevTO is not just for developers by trade, but as Kevin once put it “even if you touched some HTML”:

With #devTO gaining the momentum that it has, more and more people, who do really not code much, have begun coming out to this coding focused meetup – which is awesome. And we’re glad for that. It was something very surprising because we’ve never seen it coming. The last meetup, July 25th a.k.a. Sprint 3, was a split between the two: those who got their hands dirty in production of code, and those who did not. Something we’ve never thought of when #devTO started out as an idea between the two developers, @jonezy and myself, looking to meet up to share thoughts. It also wasn’t really a forethought after @naelshawwa took an interest to the idea, or when @clickflickca came into the picture. We had no idea that it would come to this. And thanks to those who do attend: you guys are the reason why we do this. Learning. Still, I do have something to say to those who probably say things like “oh, I don’t code” or “it’s not really my thing”. [Read more on Kevin’s blog]

So there you go folks. Yes we will talk Dev and tech every last Monday but you will most definitely meet people who work online that are not developers. We had marketers and PR people show up, we had designers, we had entrepreneurs, project managers. Also guess who else comes to these events? Recruiters. So if you’re looking for a new gig come out. If not, then come out to meet some awesome people in Toronto from different industries that all come together because of the web.