Software Carpentry Bootcamp – a delicious name for a delicious thing

By Aimee Whitcroft 26/06/2013

Friends! Readers! Random people who ended up here alone and confused!

As hopefully all of you* know by now, the 2013 eResearch Symposium is next week in Christchurch.  Started in 2010, this illustrious and awesome event is all about the burgeoning field, of, well, eResearch. Which is still in the process, in many ways, of being fully and tightly defined, but can loosely be thought of as ‘research with a digital/tech element to it – tech to improve the research itself, or collaboration to get it done more easily’.

The theme this year is ‘eResearch as an enabler**. You’re welcome to go to the eResearch website for more information about it, and it’s something I’d heartily recommend attending. To everyone.

But now, on to this post!

One of the sessions taking place is Software Carpentry Bootcamp: Helping scientists build better software. Over the last few years I’ll freely admit I’ve become rather interested in this whole software thang, and especially the teaching of oneself, of course with oodles of help***, to build things of this sort.

And no matter which way you cut it, software is increasingly important in, and an increasingly large part of, science. Just think about all the happy chatter over Python, for starters!

Anyhoo, the Bootcamp says of itself:

Software Carpentry’s aim is to teach researchers (usually graduate students) basic computing concepts and skills so that they can get more done in less time, and with less pain.

This event is an excellent opportunity for researchers who are interested in learning about how to integrate technology into their research practice. Arranged as a set of tutorials and hands-on sessions, Software Carpentry Boot Camps provide proven tools to assist researchers in their day-to-day work.

It’ll be taking place 1-4 July, and there are tonnes more details on what’s it about, who should attend, and how to register (it’s not the same as the rest of the Symposium!).

Also, ahem, the presenters are from Stanford and Berkeley…I mean, who better than people of that sort of calibre to teach you, right? And it’s not like upskilling is ever a bad thing 🙂


Disclaimer: I did some writing for eResearch/BeSTGRID aaaages ago, but I no longer have any professional affiliations with them, nor do they give me any money. So no conflict of interest here, I am not being paid to write about this, etc etc. I did get asked to help spread the word, though, which I am super happy to do 🙂


* Except for the alone and confused people. To you, I proffer only hugs and soothing sounds.

** For science and awesome. Not your varied and no-doubt wonderful vices and flaws.

*** I went to the superb Rails Girls Wellington a few weeks back, for example, and have been doing Ruby stuff madly ever since. If you’re interested in attending or mentoring the next one (and there will be/have been others in New Zealand), get in touch with them!