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The Second Knowabunga Day of 2014

Posted 2014-04-10 By Mikael Brassman

Our first knowledge day was code-named "Knowabunga Day". It is a direct reference to our favourite childhood cartoon; Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. One of the characters - Michelangelo - used to yell "Cowabunga!", a nonsensical word but with a lot of heart behind it.

Cowabunga dudes!

It’s no secret that we like to see ourselves as ninjas, i.e. specialists who execute their tasks seamlessly. In order to achieve our goals - and our clients’ goals - we need to keep our wits sharp and our tools sharper. It’s imperative for us to get involved in various kinds of knowledge reinforcing activities together with our fellow ninjas. We take these activities very seriously and plan carefully for them. Thus we made up the ‘Knowabunga’ moniker by combining the aforementioned turtle's peculiar exclamation with the word 'knowledge'.

The Knowabunga Zen

We started our first "Knowabunga" with a modest goal, to test the waters. We set that one up with Open Source Software (OSS) as a theme and divided ourselves into groups to work on some OSS projects. Our expectations were blown way out of proportion with our code mashing ninjas authoring at least one pull request. It was fun, it catered to our ninjas' high competencies, and it's difficult to imagine that we'd be able to follow up our initial Knowabunga success, which was a real debauchery of programming code. That is if you could even call it debauchery? You could tell it was more a case of pure indulgence with everyones passion clearly visible that day.

Interested in knowing more about that first day? Take a look at the blog posts below:

Lets talk about the second day then, shall we?

Enter the Dragon

The second Knowabunga Day occurred last Friday and - Oh My Goodness - was it fun! But I'm getting ahead of myself; let’s take it from the beginning! Long before the day started we were all given the opportunity to pitch ideas for projects or activities. So, that morning, after a magnificent intro by @baluubas, ideas were performed as elevator pitches in half a minute slots.

Chris is pitching

Pitching functional programming

The pitched ideas ranged from learning functional programming using koans, to looking at recently released versions of the OSS project Roslyn, to creating a platformer game using Unity. The Stockholm office had a comparable set of pitches; such as writing Chrome extensions and an awesome javascript 3D game. It just goes to show that although our locations may differ, our interests do not.

Groups were formed, as each pitch required at least two team members, and the activities started immediately thereafter. You could say that everyone in the office was pumped to work! The teams were so focused and immersed within their work that some were almost reluctant to leave their seats to eat some delicious lunch! Some of us even had to be reminded that it was, in fact, time to eat! Now that’s what you call dedication!


Game Coding!

Look at all that code!

Rounding it Up

Towards the end of the day each team had a chance to debrief and discuss their activity or project. It went rather well, maybe too well, as our guy that is responsible for our knowledge days was totally chillin'...

@baluubas is all like chill, they got this...

Demo of a multiplayer game made in Unity3D

Demoing "SvenskSkarp"

A swagging report on their findings

The teams all had things to ‘show and tell’. It ended up as mostly ‘tell’ but there was a lot of showing off as well! The Unity 2D platformer team handed out XBOX controllers for the audience to play a death-match on our large projected screen. The Roslyn team created a compiler for a Swedish dialect of C# that we like to call "SvenskSkarp" and the functional programming team showed off how to write the Fizz Buzz programming challenge with a bunch of parenthesises.


The day ended with an afterwork and some ninjas indulged in playing a lot of table top games. Incidentally the next day was the International Tabletop Day.

Tabletop Gaming für Alles

Tsuro - A very easy game to set up and play

Want to read more about our day? Head on over to TheCodeJunkie's blog who has written about the experience he had during the day.

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