My Time at Mozfest 2016

I had such an amazing time at Mozfest I still can’t believe just how big and wonderful the whole event was! On Thursday I set off from the airport — we had a few delays so landing at the hotel in the early hours of Friday morning I was exhausted and fell straight to sleep. We were up and at it early on Friday morning, we had an amazing breakfast at the Hilton London Tower bridge and headed with my space wrangler Andrew to google to collect some kit needed for the youth zone. It was amazing there! When we made it to Ravensbourne the facilitator training was in full swing. There was lots of different groups and it was great to get a feel for the layout of the festival before it all kicked off!

The Youth Zone people all headed to the 2nd floor and on the way there I got chatting to some of the others. In the Youth Zone we did introductions and told each other what our workshops were all about. It was really great to hear everyone’s story. After we all got to know each other the hard work began, the rooms had to be set up which meant moving tables and chairs and then setting up each workstation with a pi, monitor, keyboard and mouse before Andrew got all the SD cards loaded and his pi net system up and running. It was amazing to see how he could control and update all the pis in one go!

After the set up we made posters and got to know the people who were helping out on our workshops a little better. I made great friends with Sabrina, Elise and Joshua. When everything was as ready as it could be we went to the science show and got to see lots of really cool projects. I loved the BBC news stand where we got to make our own GIFs from photo stills and text.

On Saturday we were up bright and early. I had to help out at two workshops that day but I stayed and took part in lots more helping people around me if they needed it. I helped out with Elise’s Sonic Pi workshop and it was amazing. She had great graphics in her presentation and I have since used the presentation tool she used to make some fun things myself! I got to meet Polly today too — she was someone Andrew assigned to mentor me and she helped me by looking over my presentation and worksheet. She was really very nice! My favourite workshop I took part in on Sat was a minecraft workshop by Marc from the Raspberry Pi foundation. It was really cool and I built a maze from TNT ;-)

On Sunday it was Joshua’s turn to go first and he did a great job I missed bits of his workshop as I had hit a snag with mine — my code from the version of scratch I used wasn’t working on the version there and I couldn’t configure how to get the pads working in time. I adapted my presentation and thanks to Mum, Polly and Elise I stayed calm and went with the changed version. I was actually very lucky I had changed it as the group I had were all beginners and we would never have got time to move on to the tricky bits I had wanted to base the most of the workshop on anyway! I really enjoyed the workshop the people that came were so happy with what they learned how to do that I quickly forgot my earlier disappointment. For the rest of the day I helped out in other workshops and took part in the Astro Pi workshop which was amazing I had never used the sense hat before so this was really cool. I had a quick look around at some of the other floors and there was amazing things going on but I just felt the Youth Zone was a real home away from home! T

Thank you Andrew for asking me to take part and Dorine for all your work too. I really enjoyed every aspect of the weekend and I came home bursting with ideas and things I wanted to explore further. I hope that I can go back again next year and I have my thinking hat on already for a cool workshop! I made some true friends for life and I can’t wait to meet them again! #reunion2017

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