A brief history of NodeSchool
On a fine day, a few people from a little upcoming community of daring open source hackers decided to challenge the world with the powers of a language that others dismissed as “too slow”, “a toy language”, and “web only”. They came together to build what would be a simple “ workshopper ” module, called stream-adventure .
What’s a workshopper? It’s a simple framework displaying a set of challenges to be completed right in your terminal, and has a test runner incorporated within it to test your code solutions.
Soon, ideas came pouring in, which became modules in the NodeJS ecosystem (npm). Participants created repositories and set up websites. And in late 2013, the first official NodeSchool event was underway in Silicon Valley.
The community started to grow, and local chapters sprang up all over the world. By May 2016, there were more than 165 worldwide city-based chapters, which have hosted more than 500 events so far!
Node Comes to Kolkata
In July of last year, I hit upon the idea of hosting a NodeSchool event in my city. Tech-wise, Kolkata is a laid back city with few meetups or hackathons to speak of. Most of the cool events are either in Bangalore or Hyderabad. We have an IT Park — known here as Sector V — which was a promised utopia of budding startups and big companies alike. But let’s just say that it hasn’t flourish as much as those of other metropolitan areas in India.
There are tech companies here, but most are service based. There isn’t much of a product or startup footprint. Undergraduates and graduates in my city miss out on the most important medium for networking and skill learning just because of the current landscape. And thus, they resort to joining service-based IT behemoths, which just treat them as disposable resource.
With only a short time to set everything up, I reached out to a NodeSchool core team member, Adam Brady , and asked him to guide me. I had three priorities for the event:
- Create awareness in my city and my college
- Train college students and help them shape up with new technologies
- Put our college to the global map
All NodeSchool Chapters are city based. This meant that, technically speaking, I had to host NodeSchool Kolkata. But due to time and space constraints, I had a better idea. Why not setup a smaller college-level chapter instead? After talking it over with Adam, he agreed to my proposal, and hence the NodeSchool IEM Kolkata Chapter was born on August 2015.
As far as new beginnings go, it exceeded my expectations, to say the least! The attendees went home with a little hands-on knowledge, some freebie stickers, and a lot more confidence! IEM Kolkata was added to the world map, and Max Odgen (principle founder of NodeSchool) commented on our pics !