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BarCamp is an international network of user-generated conferences (or unconferences). They are open, participatory workshop-events, the content of which is provided by participants. The first BarCamps focused on early-stage web applications, and were related to open source technologies, social protocols, and open data formats. The format has also been used for a variety of other topics, including public transit, health care, and political organizing. BarCamp is a global network of user-generated conferences that are in the format of open, participatory workshop events, with contents provided by the participants themselves. The ad-hoc gathering born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment. It is an intense event with discussions, demos and interaction from participants. It is an excellent way to hear about new things and meet new people.
The name BarCamp is a playful allusion to the event’s origins, with reference to the programmer slang term, foobar: BarCamp arose as an open-to-the-public alternative to Foo Camp, which is an annual invitation-only (for Friends of O’Reilly) participant-driven conference hosted by Tim O’Reilly. The first BarCamp was held in Palo Alto, California, from August 19–21, 2005, in the offices of Socialtext. It was organized in less than one week, from concept to event, with 200 attendees. Since then, BarCamps have been held in over 350 cities around the world, in North America, South America, Africa, Europe, the Middle East, Australasia and Asia. To mark the first anniversary of BarCamp, BarCampEarth was held in multiple locations world wide on August 25–27, 2006. The second anniversary of BarCamp, BarCampBlock, was held in Palo Alto at the original location, but also over a three block radius on August 18–19, 2007, and was attended by over 800 people. The largest recorded BarCamp happened in February 2011 with over 4700 confirmed registered attendees in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma). The previous year (January 2010) BarCamp Yangon attracted over 2700 attendees (confirmed with registration forms) Barcamp Yangon in Global Voices.
Over 10 volunteer-based BarCamps had successfully been organised thus far from different around Malaysia; Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru, Malacca, Penang Island, Selangor, and Perak. The first, known then as BarCampMalaysia, was held over two-days in Kuala Lumpur at the city centre in August 2008 with a participation of almost 300 people. The crowd grew bigger at the most recent BarCampKL with last two years featuring a full two-days of back-to-back groundswell-approved sharings held in INTI Subang Jaya (April 2009), which was attended by more than 600 participants (includes teens to seniors); followed closely-by in equal numbers held in Segi College, Subang Jaya (April 2010) Participants came as far as Singapore, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand including other various countries in the Asian region, added by other globe-trotting participants from Europe and Northern America.
Every person is free to participate in BarCamp. It is completely open to all regardless of race, creed and gender with no monetary fees applied to the attendee or the speaker. BarCamp primarily would successfully attract these following groups of individuals:
Internet-driven & technology-savvy consumers (both software & hardware enthusiast)
Ardent fans of popular social networks (e.g. Facebook, MySpace, Linked-In etc.)
Bloggers & twitteratis (e.g. WordPress, Twitter, etc.)
Consumers of the new media, web 2.0, digital media
Technology entrepreneurs and business-driven communities
Art and design enthusiasts
Experienced & novice internet shoppers
Learners and experts in various fields and industries which are non-tech related
Highly advanced users & early adopters of highly sophisticated laptop computers, digital cameras & mobile phones
General public who embrace freedom of information and treasure knowledge sharing
People who are passionate about what they do in contributing towards society
1st Rule: You do talk about BarCamp.
2nd Rule: You do blog about BarCamp.
3rd Rule: If you want to present, you must write your topic and name in a presentation slot.
4th Rule: Only three word intros.
5th Rule: As many presentations at a time as facilities allow for.
6th Rule: No pre-scheduled presentations, no tourists.
7th Rule: Presentations will go on as long as they have to or until they run into another presentation slot.
8th Rule: If this is your first time at BarCamp, you HAVE to present.
(Ok, you don’t really HAVE to, but try to find someone to present with, or at least ask questions and be an interactive participant.)
Presentations promoting specific commercial products or companies are discouraged. Hold a DemoCamp session/slot for folks to demonstrate specific commercial products etc. rather than take up whole slots with company pitches.