A Bootcamp at Mozilla

This post originally appeared on the Software Carpentry website.

We ran a two-day bootcamp at Mozilla's office in Toronto last week for people from local research hospitals. It seemed to go well: only 28 of the 37 who'd registered showed up, but with a couple of exceptions because of scheduling conflicts, everyone who showed up on day 1 came back on day 2. Many thanks to Dhavide Aruliah, Yele Bonilla, Mike Conley, Gabriel Devenyi, Fan Dong, and Blake Winton for helping out.

Good Bad
  • New Tools
  • Good teachers
  • Good supply of paper/book references
  • Useful simple bash scripts for analyzing text files
  • Snacks: mmm...
  • New plotting tools to replace Matlab
  • Shell tools interesting
  • Importance of version control
  • Preview of IPython Notebook
  • Stickies for feedback
  • Good coverage basics (didn't jump right in to Python)
  • Impressing upon us that everyone's research is relevant
  • Digressions on learning psychology
  • Not enough testing covered
  • Python installation problems
  • Some examples didn't work
  • More hands-on Python needed
  • Digressions on learning psychology
  • Numerical analysis parts too mathematical
  • Need short overnight exercises to support learning
  • More signposts what we're doing and why
  • More exercises and application examples needed
  • Not everything is placed on the Etherpad
  • Getting working scripts not seamless
  • Too damn cold

Dialogue & Discussion

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