Today web developers can attend a multitude of conferences, workshops, hack days and master-classes, or get involved with local communities across the country, yet back in 2005 such opportunities were rare. Indeed the only notable event of that year was the first @media conference, and the only person I spoke to about web development outside of work was Jon, a friend from school who happened to do the same job.
This was all about to change. Soon after I blogged about @media, I received an e-mail from Simon Jobling who was excited to discover that he wasn’t the only web developer in Walsall. After exchanging a few e-mails, me, Jon, Simon and his friend Chris met up in a bar in Walsall, discussed the topics of the day and thought what to call this new group. We came up with The Multipack, a fusion of the name Britpack and multimedia/multi-talented (with bonus points given for beginning with an ‘M’, to signify its Midlands focus).
A lot has happened in the intervening years. Whilst membership hasn’t grown massively in number, you can be sure to see new faces at each monthly meet-up, whilst a core group (that have since become good friends) ensure that our little community continues to thrive. With this year having seen the introduction of a ‘Presents’ series of talks, what better way to celebrate our fourth birthday than with the fourth event in this series.
Our next event
The Multipack Presents: Rich Internet Apps features Nick Harewood talking about Microsoft Silverlight whilst Bruce Lawson returns to give us an update on HTML5. Meanwhile Si has promised to bring along some birthday cake, whilst me, Jon and possibly Chris will hopefully be in attendance so as to reunite all four founding members.
So be sure to join us next Saturday, the 17th of October. As usual, the event kicks of at The Old Crown pub at 2pm, before moving to the offices of One Black Bear at 4pm. You can find further details on Upcoming.
I remember my first Multipack meeting back in April 2006. It’s great that some of the people I met then are still attending regularly and, like me, finding it rewarding.
I also attended @media 2005, but such was the professional isolation I felt then, that it took almost a year before I found the Multipack.
These days, as you point out, there is a glut of events and groups for Web geeks to attend and participate in, which is a very positive state of affairs. And I’m glad that Multipack continues to go from strength to strength, particularly Geek In The Park.
I really wish it was easier for me to get to Multipack meetups, especially this one. It’s always great to meet up with you folks and have a few drinks. It’s almost a year since I last made the journey so it’s high time I make the journey to Brum.