Achieving the Code Camp Grand Slam

Code Camp Grand Slam 2012

In baseball, a Grand Slam is a home run hit when all three bases are occupied, scoring four runs. In ultra-running, the Grand Slam recognizes those who complete four of the oldest 100-mile trail runs in the U.S. In tennis, the Grand Slam refers to winning the four major tournaments: the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon, and the U.S. Open. Inspired by these, we created our own version: the Code Camp Grand Slam, awarded to those who speak at four distinct Code Camps within a single calendar year. After two years of falling short by just one event, Tom and I finally achieved our goal.

1. California State University, Fullerton

The first event each year is held at California State University, Fullerton. It’s a cool place and Cal State Fullerton alumni include an astronaut (Tracy Caldwell Dyson) who has made two trips to space, politicians and Academy Award-winning directors, actors (Kevin Costner), producers, and cinematographers.This venue is a favorite not just for its excellent lecture halls, but for its outstanding, knowledgeable, and engaged audience. We presented on Digital Signal Processing with Android and Arduino, kicking off our Grand Slam journey.

2. University of California San Diego

In June, we headed to the San Diego Code Camp at the University of California, San Diego Extensions Complex. You could call it a home game and despite the less-than-ideal classrooms and equipment, the stunning surroundings near La Jolla Shores and Torrey Pines State Reserve made it worthwhile. We reconnected with old friends and enjoyed a celebratory meal at Rock Bottom with Professor Jeffery Peacock.

3. University of Southern California

October took us to the University of Southern California, a prestigious private research university in Los Angeles. The historic campus, with its Romanesque architecture and scenic location, provided a remarkable backdrop for our presentations. The long drive from Ramona was well worth it to speak at such a distinguished institution.

4. Chandler – Gilbert Community College

Our final stop was the Desert Code Camp in Chandler, Arizona, at Chandler–Gilbert Community College. The unique architecture of Ironwood Hall and the artsy character of the Pecos Campus made this event special. Our Raspberry Pi talk was well received by a professional and knowledgeable audience. This well-organized event, featuring top-notch speakers and presentations, concluded with a celebration at 'Coach & Willie’s' (this location has closed), enjoying Chandler’s own SanTan Brewing Devil’s Ale.

Achieving the Code Camp Grand Slam required significant effort, planning, and commitment. It was tremendously exhausting, but we are proud to have completed it. We wouldn't have missed a single event of this incredible journey.