FAILCamp

How to Get to FailCamp Toronto 3 from Union Station

by Joey deVilla on September 29, 2009

Most of you will be heading to FailCamp via public transit, and many have asked how to get to FailCamp’s venue, the South Building of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, from Union Station – here’s how!

First, go up to the main level of Union Station, which looks like this:

skywalk 1

On the west end of the station – the side with the Harvey’s – you should see a sign marked “Skywalk”. Go down that hall!

skywalk 2

Keep going…

skywalk 3

There’ll be a slight twist to the left, but keep following the hallway! You’ll get to a tunnel like this:

skywalk 4

Keep going! At the top of the steps at the end of the tunnel, it’ll turn left and you’ll see this:

skywalk 5

That’s the entrance to the actual Skywalk, which looks like this. Follow the signs to the door on the left that says “Convention Centre”…

skywalk 6

…then follow the signs that say “South Building”…

skywalk 7

…and follow the arrows that lead you to the TechDays conference. FailCamp is in room 716, which is on the 700 level of the South Building. Note that the 700 level is below the 600 level, not above it.

skywalk 8

See you at FailCamp!

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The Manifesto of Fail and FailCamp Toronto 3

by Joey deVilla on September 28, 2009

failcamp_toronto_3 

In honour of tomorrow’s event, FailCamp Toronto 3, I present The Manifesto of Fail, which was published for the FailCamp held in Philadelphia last summer.

The Manifesto of Fail

fail_ship

Failure is the default

From biological species to companies to government policies, there appears to be an Iron Law of Failure, which is extremely difficult to break.

Paul Ormerod, Why Most Things Fail

fail19

Failure can be intrinsically valuable

The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive. You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more to me than any qualification I ever earned.

J.K. Rowling, Harvard Commencement Speech

fail6

We can bond through our failures

But there is an even stronger reason why we can learn from the failures of others, beyond the simple pleasure of knowing that an expert can fail too. It has to do with our ability as human beings to relate better to people in their failures than in their successes, and to learn more in the process.

Richard Farson, Management of the Absurd

fail3

And bonding over failure is a good thing

Over and over again, when people ask how they can achieve the Silicon Valley-type of opportunities in their areas, I tell them, "Celebrate failure."

Tara Hunt, Losercamp

failcopter

Also, beer is a good thing

Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

Ben Franklin (allegedly)

FailCamp Toronto 3

fail-owned-candle-fail

FailCamp Toronto 3 takes place tomorrow night – Tuesday, September 29th – at the South Building of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, room 716 at 7:00 p.m.!

fail-owned-special_offer-fail

It’s a FREE event in which you’re invited to share your tale of epic fail with your peers, whether the failure was personal, business or technical. By celebrating failure, we hope to overcome the fear of failure, which in turn leads to fear of trying. We want people to unlearn the moral that Homer Simpson taught his children: “You tried, and you failed. So the moral of the story is: never try.”

failcat

We’ll start FailCamp with an opening monologue talking about failure in general, some well-known and obscure failures throughout history and why we fear failure. Then we’ll turn the microphone on you, the audience, and challenge you to tell your most spectacular and epic story of FAIL. Our “Judging Panel of FAIL” featuring Justin Kozuch of Refresh Events and Meghann Millard of Unspace will preside and decide which stories are most worthy of winning valuable FAIL prizes.

epic_beer_fail

After FailCamp, we’ll make our way to the pub. FAIL demands beer!

For more information about FailCamp Toronto 3 and to register (remember, it’s free!), visit FailCamp’s event page.

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TechDays Toronto Schedule and Details / FailCamp Toronto 3

by Joey deVilla on September 27, 2009

microsoft_techdays_canada_2009

TechDays Canada 2009 is Microsoft Canada’s cross-country conference that shows you how to make the most of our currently available tools and technologies. A couple of weeks ago, we held the first TechDays 2009 conference in Vancouver, and it went quite well. This week, TechDays makes the second stop of its seven-city tour: Toronto, on Tuesday, September 29th and Wednesday, September 30th.

TechDays takes the content of the excellent-but-expensive TechEd North America conference, takes it to cities across Canada and pairs it with local speakers and makes it available at a very affordable price. It’s a learning conference, a chance to network with people from Microsoft and techies in your area and of course, a swag opportunity with the TechDays 2009 Learning Kit, which comes with $700 worth of stuff, including a TechNet Plus direct subscription.

For the benefit of the 1200 people who will be attending as well as those of your who are curious about the event, I put together this article which will cover the schedule and other details about TechDays Toronto.

Venue

toronto

TechDays Toronto takes place at the South Building of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, right by the CN Tower and Rogers Centre (a.k.a. the SkyDome), located at 222 Bremner Boulevard, shown on the map below:

Map picture

Note that if you enter the Convention Centre via through Front Street, you’re entering the North Building. To get to TechDays Toronto from the North Building, go to the floor above street level and take the walkway/bridge to the South Building. The TechDays sessions will take place on Level 700 of the South Building.

Schedule

TechDays Toronto takes place on Tuesday, September 29th and Wednesday, September 30th. There’s a complimentary breakfast from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. on both days, and the sessions start running at 9:00 a.m.. There’s an introductory session for each track on both days that runs from 9:00 a.m. to 9:15 a.m., where the track leads provide an overview of the day’s sessions.

Each track has two morning sessions spaced out by a 20-minute break, followed by 65-minute break for lunch.

Tuesday is the longer of the two days, as it has three afternoon sessions spaced out by 15-minute breaks; the third session is a bonus session. FailCamp Toronto 3 will take place Tuesday evening.

Wednesday has just two afternoon sessions, spaced out by a 20-minute break and will conclude at 4:00 p.m.

Day 1 (Tuesday, September 29th)

Time

Track 1:
Developer Fundamentals and Best Practices

Track 2:
Developing for the Microsoft-based Platform

Track 3:
Windows Client

Track 4:
Servers, Security, and Management

Track 5:
Communication and Collaboration

Track 6:
Developer Foundations

Room

Room 701A

Room 718A

Room 701B

Room 718B

Room 716

Room 717

8:00am to 9:00am

Breakfast

9:00am to 9:15am

Track Introduction

9:15am to 10:30am

Tips and Tricks for Visual Studio

What’s New in Silverlight 3

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit 2010: The Next Generation

From Zero to Live Migration: How to Set Up a Live Migration

Deploying Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 in a Virtual World

S-O-L-I-D : The Five OO Principles that will Change your Life Forever

10:30am to 10:50am

Break (20 minutes)

10:50am to 12:05pm

Test Driven Development Techniques

Expression Blend for Developers

A Geek’s Guide to Windows User State Migration Tool 4.0

SCVMM 2008: Performance and Resource Optimization (PRO) and Management Integration

Versioning and Upgrade of SharePoint-based Solutions

Going from 0 to 100 Dollars per Hour with the .NET You Never Knew

12:05pm to 1:10pm

Lunch (65 minutes)

1:10pm to 2:25pm

Patterns for the Rest of Us

Building Modular Applications Using Silverlight and WPF

Easing the Migration from Windows XP to Windows 7

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Virtualization Considerations and Best Practices

Comprehensive Security for Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007

Layers, the Secret Language of Architects

2:25pm to 2:45pm

Break (20 minutes)

2:45pm to 4:00pm

A Strategic Comparison of Data Access Technologies from Microsoft

Optimizing Your Apps for the Windows 7 User Experience

Working the Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE)

Monitoring UNIX/Linux with Microsoft System Center Operations Manager 2007 R2

Using Microsoft Dashboards, Scorecards, and Analytics to Monitor the Health of your IT Infrastructure

Refactoring for Fun and Profit

4:00pm to 4:20pm

Break (20 minutes)

Bonus sessions

4:20pm to 5:30pm

How ISVs can strengthen their business by Working with Microsoft

Taking Your Application on the Road with Windows Mobile Software

Application-Aware Data Protection with Dell EqualLogic

Interoperable Web Platform: IIS7, Web Platform Installer and Web App Gallery

TBD

TBD

5:30pm

Day 1 ends

7:00pm to 9:30pm

FailCamp Toronto 3 
For details, see below or visit Demo Ignite Camp’s event page.

 

Day 2 (Wednesday, September 30th)

Time

Track 1:
Developer Fundamentals and Best Practices

Track 2:
Developing for the Microsoft-based Platform

Track 3:
Windows Client

Track 4:
Servers, Security, and Management

Track 5:
Communication and Collaboration

Track 6:
Developer Foundations

Room

Room 701A

Room 718A

Room 701B

Room 718B

Room 716

Room 717

8:00am to 9:00am

Breakfast

9:00am to 9:15am

Track Introduction

9:15am to 10:30am

Practical Web Testing

Introducing ASP.NET MVC

Inside the Application Compatibility Toolkit 5.5

Reinventing Remote Access with DirectAccess

Architecture of Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

S-O-L-I-D : The Five OO Principles that will Change your Life Forever

10:30am to 10:50am

Break (20 minutes)

10:50am to 12:05pm

Better Software Change and Configuration Management Through TFS

SOLIDify Your ASP.NET MVC Applications

Solving Application Compatibility Issues Through Virtualization

BranchCache: Helping You Save on WAN Bandwidth Consumption at Branch Offices

Transition and Deployment of Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

Going from 0 to 100 Dollars per Hour with the .NET You Never Knew

12:05pm to 1:10pm

Lunch (65 minutes)

1:10pm to 2:30pm

Metrics That Matter: Using Team System for Process Improvement from Microsoft

Building RESTful Services with WCF

Windows-Based Application Readiness for Developers

Server Management Improvements in Windows Server 2008 R2

High Availability in Microsoft Exchange Server 2010

Layers, the Secret Language of Architects

2:30pm to 2:50pm

Break (20 minutes)

2:50pm to 4:00pm

Database Change Management with Team System Developing and Consuming Services for SharePoint No Budget for Tools? No Problem! Hot Tools on a Limited IT Budget Best Practices in Architecting and Implementing Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) Exchange Server 2010 Management Tools

Refactoring for Fun and Profit

4:00pm

Day 2 ends; conference wrap-up

mtcc_level_700_map

FailCamp Toronto 3

failcamp_toronto_3

Since we had the venue for two days, it meant that we had these nice large conference rooms available to us on the night of Day 1 of TechDays Toronto. Rather than let them just sit there, we thought it might be fun to put one of them to good use with a community event. We got in touch with Justin Kozuch of Refresh Events and Meghann Millard of Unspace, and thus FailCamp Toronto 3 was born!

FailCamp Toronto 3 is the third FailCamp we’ve held in Toronto. Created by Thomas Fuchs and Amy Hoy, FailCamp can best be described as a “celebration of failure”. It starts with an opening monologue covering failure in history, followed by a failure free-for-all in which some selected storytellers and audience members are invited to share their stories of failure – and more importantly, the lessons learned from them. We’ll award prizes to the most spectacular stories of failure, and we’ll head to the pub afterwards!

FailCamp Toronto 3 takes place in room 716, South Building, Metro Toronto Convention Centre at 7:00 p.m. on the evening of Tuesday, September 29th. For more information about FailCamp Toronto 3 and to register to attend (it’s free!), see the FailCamp event page.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

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FailCamp Toronto 3 Happens Next Tuesday!

by Joey deVilla on September 24, 2009

When life gives you a lemon, make lemonade. And when your company produces a cringe-inducing video on how to host a Stepford party, you repurpose it:

the_real_partys_at_failcamp

Don’t forget that FailCamp Toronto 3 takes place this Tuesday, September 29th at 7:00 p.m. in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building, Room 716. If you’re coming in from the Front Street entrance of the Centre, remember that you’ve got to go up one floor then use the bridge to get to the South Building.

Here’s a map of level 7 of the South Building showing room 716, where the FailCamp magic takes place:

mtcc_south_building_map

Tell Me Again: What is FailCamp?

FailCamp is a celebration of failure. It’s about sharing your tales of epic fail and the lessons you learned from them. It’s about learning not to view failure as defeat, but as a learning opportunity and stepping stone to success. It’s about taking away the fear of failure and learning to take a chance, think big and achieve what you thought you couldn’t.

We’ll start with some stories of historical failure: some you’ve read in the history books, and some culled from our own personal histories — the wisdom of fail through the ages. Then we’ll turn the microphone on you, inviting you to share your greatest stories of failure, challenging you to entertain the audience and even win prizes if our "Panel of Fail" deems your failure or the lessons derived from it to be the best of the bunch. The more embarassing, hilarious and educational your story, the better! Where else can you win big by losing big?

Joey deVilla (Microsoft, DemoCamp, accordion trouble-making) and John Bristowe (Microsoft) will host the event, encouraging you to confess your failures while sharing their own. FailCamp alumni Meghann Millard (Unspace, RubyFringe, FutureRuby) and Justin Kozuch (Refresh Events) and others will be the Panel of Fail whom you must impress in order to win prizes.

How Do I Get Tickets?

It’s very easy, because the event is free! Just sign up on our event page and show up on Tuesday, September 29th at 7:00 p.m. in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building, Room 716!

click_here_to_register

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failcamp_toronto_3

FailCamp Toronto 3 is 10 days away! Come join us in our “celebration of fail”. We’ll share stories about the times when things went pear-shaped, got SNAFUed, or just plain failed — and just as important, the lessons we learned from them. And unlike many failures, FailCamp’s admission is free.

For more details about FailCamp, see the FailCamp registration page or this earlier article.

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Kanye West Wants You to Go to FailCamp!

by Joey deVilla on September 15, 2009

failcamp_kanye

That’s right, you want to join FailCamp Toronto 3, the celebration of FAIL taking place on Tuesday, September 29th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre! Take it from Kanye, you don’t want to miss this event. For more details, see the FailCamp event page and my earlier article on FailCamp Toronto 3.

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FailCamp Toronto 3 / Tuesday, September 29, 2009 / Metro Toronto Convention Centre

That’s right, we’re holding another FailCamp in Toronto! Mark Tuesday, September 29th on your calendar and be prepared to share you best/worst stories of FAIL, impress the judges in our “Panel of Fail” and win big prizes!

Here’s what the event is all about, as taken directly from FailCamp Toronto 3’s event page:

The pictures of Sean Connery in his ridiculous costume from Zardoz can only mean one thing: it’s time for another FailCamp!

FailCamp is a celebration of failure. It’s about sharing your tales of epic fail and the lessons you learned from them. It’s about learning not to view failure as defeat, but as a learning opportunity and stepping stone to success. It’s about taking away the fear of failure and learning to take a chance, think big and achieve what you thought you couldn’t.

We’ll start with some stories of historical failure: some you’ve read in the history books, and some culled from our own personal histories — the wisdom of fail through the ages. Then we’ll turn the microphone on you, inviting you to share your greatest stories of failure, challenging you to entertain the audience and even win prizes if our "Panel of Fail" deems your failure or the lessons derived from it to be the best of the bunch. The more embarassing, hilarious and educational your story, the better! Where else can you win big by losing big?

Joey deVilla (Microsoft, DemoCamp, accordion trouble-making) and John Bristowe (Microsoft) will host the event, encouraging you to confess your failures while sharing their own. FailCamp alumni Meghann Millard (Unspace, RubyFringe, FutureRuby) and Justin Kozuch (Refresh Events) and others will be the Panel of Fail whom you must impress in order to win prizes.

FailCamp takes place on Tuesday, September 29th at 7:00 p.m. at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (255 Front Street West, between John and Simcoe Streets). Admission is free — all you have to do is register to attend, and make sure you bring your best story of fail! It’ll be full of win!

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