code-for-a-living May 11, 2020

Dev Around the Sun: Community and caring in lonely times

#DevAroundTheSun is a group of technologists, from all backgrounds, with one singular goal: To raise awareness and funds for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19 related illness through interactive collaboration and learning within the technology community. The conference will be for 24 hours starting at 12:00pm UTC on May 12th.
Avatar for Sara Chipps
Director of Product, Community

Like many in the world of coding and beyond I’ve spent the past few weeks beautifying my island on Animal Crossing, “Tealand” (named after our lovely ragdoll cat, Tea). I’ve really enjoyed spending time collaborating with other coders and friends trying to improve each other’s islands and share hacks and tips. 

Hello from Tealand where we use proper PPE.

In quarantine, we’re all looking for some kind of connection, and Animal Crossing has been filling that need for a lot of us. We used to have conferences, meetups, and networking happy hours. Now I have my less-than-lonely island. 

To give you an idea of how prevalent this is, this past weekend, I was thrilled to see the Women of React conference had pivoted to online swag including cute Animal Crossing gear! I also learned of this amazing Dev Ops conference that is taking place 100% on Animal Crossing! I love this community so much and seeing things like this is incredibly inspiring. 

Outside of Animal Crossing, inspiration is everywhere. Some other things I’ve been inspired by during this time are projects like Wuhan2020 who is a group in Wuhan China that is gathering public data to report against. And the re-energized project that wowed many of us over the past few months, Stanford’s Folding at Home, uses distributed computing to search for cryptic pockets on the surface of COVID-19 to exploit to fight the disease.  

A few months ago, Claire Novotny, Executive Director of the .NET Foundation, mentioned she was working on a fundraising project to support those directly affected by COVID-19, titled Dev Around the Sun. A 24 hour conference streamed on Twitch with talks from programmers from various disciplines. I jumped in with a bunch of other folks to help organize and, now the conference is just a day away. I can’t wait to share that inspiration with more developers while helping to fund the fight against COVID-19.

#DevAroundTheSun is a group of technologists, from all backgrounds, with one singular goal: To raise awareness and funds for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19 related illness through interactive collaboration and learning within the technology community. The conference will be for 24 hours starting at 12:00pm UTC on May 12th. Coming to the conference is free; instead, we ask is that you make a donation to Direct Relief, a non profit helping those most affected by COVID-19. 

Direct Relief is working in overdrive to get protective gear and critical care medications to as many health workers as possible.

Direct Relief is a world-wide 501(c)3, in 50 states and over 80 countries. They work to improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty or emergencies—without regard to politics, religion, or ability to pay. That’s something I think this community can get behind. 

We have talks from amazing people like Scott Hanselman, Venkat Subramaniam, Heather Wilde, DHH, and many more. Throughout the day we will be soliciting donations while companies match them. 

I know we’re all a little exhausted from all the COVID-19 related emails we’re getting. But this is a chance to actually do something to help battle the pandemic, while connecting with the developer community. Maybe I’ll invite you all to Tealand when it’s over. 

We really hope you will join us. To register, just head over to the website and sign up for our mailing list. We’ll send you a link to access the conference when it is time. 

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