2014 Festival of Code

From Monday the 28th July to Sunday the 3rd August, I took part in another Young Rewired State festival of code. This time our group - named "Flappyworks" as a portmanteau of flappybird and "works" - were stationed at the DigitasLBi center in Brick Lane, London (many thanks to them for providing an awesome center by the way!).

During the week leading up to Friday, we spent all day every day coding our project, which was a two-player tower defence game called Intersection, based on real-world data (police, government budgets etc.). The game is asymmetric, with one player as an attacker, and the other as a defender, with the attacker's objective being to take over the defender's city. We incorporated the Google Maps API version 3 and did many cool things using technologies such as WebSockets (using FirebaseIO's excellent wrapper), HTML5 and others.

The actual festival of code took place from Friday to Sunday at Plymouth University. Everything about it was amazing, other than the coach journey down there, which was awful and took about seven hours. They provided plenty of food, and (unlike last time) good wifi and loads of sockets (not that I needed them with my new Lenovo Thinkpad laptop and its 14 hour battery life!).

Us setting off for Plymouth on Friday.

There were three rounds. Our group managed to pass the first, as well as the semi-finals, but narrowly lost out to an (apparently) amazing project by a German team in the "best example of code" category. During the final, which was staged in the Plymouth Pavilions, my live demo was interrupted by an eager member of the audience who decided it would be a good idea to join my session. It turned out it was a great idea, because they allowed me to demonstrate true two-player functionality and actually play the game, which was both interesting, fun and hopefully quite impressive!

You can check out how our presentation went by watching it here (I'm the one operating the computer):

We managed to get some nice live twitter feedback, which was good:

All in all, it was an awesome experience, and I'll have to go back next year as a mentor (as I'll be 19 then).

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