What To Expect

The retreat will run from Friday 13th May until Monday 16th of May. Most people will arrive in time for dinner on the Friday night (so for about 7pm), but a small number will come either late on the Friday evening or on the Saturday. At the end of the event, some people will head off on the Sunday evening, while the rest will depart after breakfast on the Monday morning.

In addition to the Apache types staying for the whole weekend, the BarCamp on the Saturday is open to everyone. We hope that at least some people from in or near Dublin will pop out for the day, to learn more about Apache projects and how the Apache Software Foundation works.

During the day
The main activity in the day is a BarCamp "un-conference". For those who've not been to a BarCamp before, there's lots of information on how they work on the BarCamp website. In general though:
  • The sessions are driven by the people who attend
  • The themes are given in advance, but the exact sessions aren't decided upon until the event
  • Sessions are generally not a "lecturer + passive audience" event, instead they're more of a collaborative discussion and learning session
  • If a session isn't working for you, you move to another one
  • BarCamps are great fun!
Generally the day kicks off with a Scheduling Session after breakfast. Here, we all get together and decide on the topics and sessions for the day. With the grid complete, the first session kicks off.

Sessions are generally either 30 or 60 minutes, depending on how much everyone feels there is. Wherever possible we schedule to avoid too many clashes, and we try to group things into mini themed tracks. There'll be breaks for lunch, and probably tea, and you can always duck out for a little bit to hack on some code!

As the sessions aren't decided upon until the event, it's hard to say exactly what will be at the event. However, there is some information on the For your boss page on our best guess. In addition, if the weather's good, then it's very likely that a group will go for a walk up into the Wicklow Mountains for a couple of hours one afternoon. If the weather isn't very good, then maybe only one or two hardy folk will... This'll be scheduled as a "bonus track" one day, and there'll still be talks for anyone who doesn't fancy the walk.

In addition to the BarCamp, some PMCs are also hosting hackathons at various points over the weekend. More details are available on the PMC Hackathons page.

And the evenings?
Generally, the last BarCamp session finishes a little before dinner, and people either do a bit of hacking, or sit around continuing the more fun and/or controversial discussions from the day's sessions.

After dinner, we normally try to arrange some presentations (fun or serious) for a little bit for those interested. Otherwise, everyone either carries on with some coding, or grabs a beer!

The venue
There's information on the What do I need to bring page about the venue.