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Witchcraft: holistic beginner tech course Tuesdays

From: Mike S.
Sent on: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 10:16 AM
Good morning Ruby group!

tl;dr: Witchcraft technology fluency class for beginners and tricksters Tuesdays 7:30-10, $10-20, 135 Thames at Flushing (Jefferson L)

Those of you who have been on this list/in this community for a few years might recall that I've been been teaching Ruby in casual settings for about 6 years.  I'm not the most advanced coder but I do work hard to explain the concepts and I've developed a lot of great metaphors for Ruby's charms.  I've always maintained the stance that this skill is approachable for anyone, and from my earliest attempts at staff training at, to my 10-minute lessons at Dogpatch Labs, my summer classes on 26th st, to my 3rd Ward course early last year, I've been able to "send the message" to an ever-increasing audience.  Some of my students and interns have gotten really good skills and jobs along the way, and others just got the intro and have that in their pocket for when they're ready to take the next step.

My new class, "Witchcraft", is intended to be more fun and a bit off-the-wall, very affordable and aimed at beginners or people at any level.  I figure there are enough topics (in both web-related and other disciplines) that we can explore them together in a way that's useful each week even if you weren't there for the previous lessons.  However, to encourage repeated attendance I have gotten my venue to agree to let students pay only $10 if they were with us the previous week.  La Luz (a new Bushwick enterprise that's run by a Fairy, a Pirate, and a Viking) also serves delicious vegetarian food, so it's a great destination for the after-work hour.

Ruby is an important part of the curriculum I'm developing, but I'm also teaching about all the Mac software and tools that I use, the general computer science that will help you envision what's possible, what's easy/difficult, and how to do things the right way the first time, and the modern web approaches that are out there.  Last week we spent a lot of time on iTunes tricks and soon we will start covering Traktor as well - and I think the app we build as a group will probably be one that helps DJs and music fans organize their collections and preferences in ways that I haven't found possible with other systems.

If you are interested in learning more or just having fun, please come tonight and/or Tuesdays this Spring.  I'm sure you each have friends who are ready to embrace this skill and either empower themselves to do more, or apply for better jobs.  At $20 for 2.5 hours, this lesson is clearly much cheaper than the alternatives.  I did that to try to attract a different breed of students.  And again, if you were there the previous week, you can come for just $10!  If you come 13 weeks in a row, you can have the entire year - that's just $140, which you'd pay for just one or two sessions at the Manhattan schools.  My lessons aren't worth less, I'm just hoping to invest in a community that can ultimately work together.  I also really want to do something that's ongoing, rather than trying to fit the curriculum into 5 or 8 weeks.

I know that a fair number of you don't know Bushwick very well yet - and some haven't even been to Brooklyn ever.  That's ok, I don't judge.  I love introducing people to the wonderful things that are going on out here - and there are many unique, amazing businesses that have started here in the past 24 months.  La Luz is two blocks from the L train, so it should be simple enough to reach from anywhere downtown.  After class we usually go out in the "Morgantown" area, which is mainly a food & drink district, but the immediate vicinity also offers co-working spaces, art galleries, retail, cafes, warehouse parties galore, and incredible event spaces like Body Actualized Center, Secret Project Robot and 319 Scholes (not to mention 3rd Ward and House of Yes).  Helping these youthful establishments realize their potential to share their world-leading art and science with the world is a huge part of what Witchcraft is all about, so don't be shy to bring your passion, curiosity, and energy along with your laptop or iPad.

Thank you so much for strengthening such a great community and remembering to invite your friends to Witchcraft! (Like the page for a taste of tips and topics) (we'll develop this one together so I've purposefully started small)


P.S. Here's a wiki I use to store the basics.

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