Writing software, in practice if not by definition, can involve long hours sitting in front of a computer screen and the opportunity to socialise with contemporaries who have shared interests and concerns is limited. In response to this need to have real world face time with others in the same field, a Demobar was organised in Galway.
Last month, developers and entrepreneurs gathered at a seafront bar to show each other products and projects that they have been working on.
On the evening about a hundred people turned out for an informal showcase of online product demos. According to John Breslin, “Having these people come together is great because there’s a network effect when you get all these products being demoed. One or two people on their own couldn’t hope to get such a crowd but when there are ten or more products being shown you get all kinds of people showing up.”
As well as the social aspect there is real value in putting one’s work on public display. In many cases this was the first opportunity for a product to be given a wider airing.
“It is good to put the product out there for a live showing because when you are working in semi-isolation with your product team you tend to miss what early adopters (with similar expectations to developers) or general users (often coming to a product with less background knowledge) will either latch on to or loathe. The early adopters get bogged down in ‘can you do this; why didn’t you do that’ whereas the others tend to say ‘hey, look what this can do!'”
Mick FitzGerald of OnePageCRM was one of the organisers of the event along with Dave Kelly, Paul Killoran, Mark Campbell, Siún Ní Raghallaigh and Ronan O’Malley. Mick says that he was surprised by the huge amount of energy present in the room.
“For a small city there seems to be a lot of very good technologies around. All the digital entrepreneurs have a great deal of optimism.
“There are some really good things happening in the West.”