Beginning at 12:00 noon on Saturday, Prolifiq surrendered our headquarters offices to #CodeDay. In 26 cities around the United States, students came together to collaborate on software projects of their own choosing.
We vacated our personal spaces to be available for the students to use. Roughly 65 students showed up, rolled up (their sleeves; to a table), and stepped up. They spent 24 hours straight in a “hack-a-thon” living the life of programming professionals: brainstorming, picking teams, collaborating, designing, coding, debugging, recovering from crashes and trying to “ship” a product on a deadline.
Several of Prolifiq’s hardcore developers (who also happen to be closer in demographic identity to a teenager than me) committed to grinding it out with the students by staying up all night and overseeing/participating/chaperoning. Dave, Zach, Ghazi, and Sean – thank you! You guys rock.
I was extremely impressed with how these teen-coders work together; one team had labor division and code management/integration skills many corporations would envy. They were the largest team of all with 7 members and were all in 9th grade. And, they shipped the most “polished” end-user product in terms of visual appeal.
There were other notables in terms of: presentation skills, architecture of the product, the enormity and complexity of the problem being addressed, productivity (one 4-person team shipped 3 products), and in tragedy – one team lost all of their code in the wee hours of the morning, having forgotten to “save.” A very important and all too real life lesson.
The state of Oregon – as do most other states – faces a huge shortage in computer science professionals; CodeDayPortland is one of the many organizations trying to help alleviate the problem. And Prolifiq has chosen this – Youth Education – as our primary Company-sponsored community service activity. We contribute our time, talents and treasure to help the next generation of business leaders and technical personnel.
The best part? We have fun doing it.