ArrrrCamp October 1st & 2nd, 2015

ArrrrCamp 2015 diversity program

Arrrr mateys,

The fantastic people of eurucamp and Ruby Berlin e.V. have offered to sponsor a number of tickets, along with Twilio and PullReview. In total we are offering up to 12 free tickets as part of a diversity program aimed to help underrepresented groups in tech to attend and lowering the barriers for them. This includes but isn’t limited to: women, people of color, LGBTQIA+ people, and disabled people.

Because the event is next week already we urge you to fill in the form below as soon as possible. Our jury will start picking the winners of the tickets by the end of the week so that there is still some time left for people to arrange travel and accommodation.

Terms & Condition

Your privacy, details and answers remain protected. The jury will decide based on your answers and never share any data with anyone. This application is for one conference ticket only. The ticket includes admission to the conference itself, catering for the day of the conference, and admission to the events organised for the conference attendees, speakers, and staff. All attendees, speakers, sponsors and staff at Arrrrcamp 2015 are required to agree with the Code of Conduct of the event. Organizers will enforce this code throughout the event.

You can find the code of conduct here:

How to apply

Simply head over to the application form and submit it. We will be in touch as soon as we can to let you know if you will be given a ticket!

Special word of thanks

We’d like to thank eurucamp, Ruby Berlin e.V., Twilio and PullReview for offering these tickets but there is one more organisation I would like to thank.

The Travis Foundation has been helping us set this up and organize the whole process. On top of that they’ve given us some tips on how to make the conference even more welcoming for everyone that wants to attend. Check out their site to learn more about what they do to make an even better open source community!

Hope to see you soon!

The Captain and crew

Kicking into high gear for the 2015 edition

Hey everyone!

It’s been a while since you heard from us hasn’t it? It’s about time we changed that.

Call for proposals

We opened the call for proposals without much fanfare and have already received 22 awesome submissions as I write this. If you haven’t already done so I’d like to urge you to have a look at our CFP page and consider submitting a talk of your own.

The process will be very similar to last year’s. The proposals will be selected anonymously by a team of people to avoid personal bias. We welcome both experienced and new speakers as we have each year. Speakers that require feedback or help with specific questions or problems can turn to us for help - we’ll find an experienced mentor to guide you through it.

As an added note: some of our attendees expressed the desire to see more technical talks. We’ll try to reflect this in our selection procedure as well. Don’t hold back to submit talks on highly technical topics!

An expanded team

The last 3 editions were run by Joren and myself (Hannes) but as you might imagine organizing a conference is a ton of work. In order to alleviate the pressure a little and to bring a breeze of fresh air into the conference we’ve asked a few people we highly respect to help out.

The team behind the next edition now consists of Oana Sipos, Floor Drees, Yannick Schutz and Christophe Philemotte as well as Joren and myself. It feels great to be able to bounce ideas off of each other and I feel like it already paid off!

We are all looking forward to meeting you in Ghent!


A word about the events at ArrrrCamp

Arrrr me mateys,

The schedule for the conference is now finally online, but the conference doesn’t quite stop with the talks! We have a number of fun things planned for you, so go ahead and take a look below about what you can do during the conference.


On wednesday we’ll find a nice bar to meet for a couple drinks before the conference. Nothing major is planned here and we’re not making reservations, so just keep an eye on Twitter for the announcement.


On Thursday we’re doing a couple of events as opposed to another party. We feel Ghent has more to offer so we decided to try something new. Most of these will take place at around 8pm for one to two hours at different locations throughout the city.


This is an event with limited seats. You will need to sign up through our Eventbrite page. The cost will be about 4 Euro per game. We’ve made a reservation for 5 lanes. Because they’re fully booked extra lanes are not possible and we’ll only get to play for an hour. Don’t be late!

Meet at 8pm at Overpoortstraat 38 at the Overpoort Bowl

Photo walk

Ghent is a beautiful city with several scenic places. We’ll take a short stroll through the city (around an hour, maybe a bit longer) allowing you to take some pictures and enjoy the city center. You can bring your camera (or phone) and possibly a tripod (remember it’ll be fairly dark already, so you might need to work at longer exposures!) but that’s your choice of course.

We’ll meet at 8pm at the venue to start the walk, please don’t be late!

Rock climbing

A personal favorite of mine is rock climbing. Bouldering is climbing on low rocks or -in this case- walls that don’t require you to have a partner or be knowledgeable about ropes and security. Bouldering is easy to get to know but hard to master, and we’ll give you a first glimpse of the sport in Europe’s biggest (and newest) climbing gym. 7 Euro gives you unlimited access to the bouldering area. Bring comfy clothes and clean shoes. This event could get canceled if the turnout is too small.

Meet at 8pm at Zuiderlaan 20 at Biover Sport Blaarmeersen.

After the events

For people with energy left we’ll meet at a bar after the events. The location will be decided later, but keep an eye on Twitter. People taking part in neither of the events are welcome to head to the bar earlier of course.


On Friday we’ll be having our famous boat party, graciously hosted by Twilio. The address for the party is Muinkkaai 1, you’re welcome from 8.30pm for a drink and a chat!

Events before, during and after ArrrrCamp

Arrrr me harties,

Now that we know who will be speaking at ArrrrCamp (and so will you coming Friday) it is time to start putting together some events before, during and after ArrrrCamp.

Last year, Arne Brasseur organized Ruby Lambik, a tour of the Geuze and Lambik breweries around Brussels the day before ArrrrCamp. We thought these attendee-organized events were a great idea so we decided to create a centralized place to learn about these events or organize your own.

We think a conference is as much about this kind of events (impromptu or not) as it is about the talks. With that in mind we want to facilitate a varied program of things to do for those of you getting to Belgium early or leaving late.

Please register your interest or submit your own event(s) at

If you need a little more help to organize something feel free to get in touch with the Captain and we’ll work something out.

The ideas added by me (Hannes) are just ideas at this point, and because we’re a small crew we will need to either pick the popular events or ask others to help out, as we can only be at one place at a time. I hope it gives you an idea of what is possible!

I hope to see you at one of the events during the days leading up to and following ArrrrCamp!

<3 The Captain

  1. Thanks eurucamp for open sourcing this fantastic application! 

Discounted cabins for our mateys

Ahoy landlubbers!

In order to make your stay on the ArrrrCamp ship a little more comfortable we’ve partnered up with Accor Hotels to offer you a discount when booking a room with them.

You can use this link to book a room at a discounted rate.

Please note that all of these rooms include breakfast. Rooms will turn out to be a little bit cheaper at the time of writing this if you book through the regular booking process and choose not to have breakfast at the hotel. There will still be breakfast at the conference as well!

If you book at the Ibis Gent Centrum Opera you will be staying at the same hotel as our speakers, which is only a 3 minute walk from the venue. The other option, Ibis Gent Centrum St Baafs, is about a 6 minute walk from the venue.

If you have any questions feel free to get in touch!

The Captain

Introducing the proposal selection team

Arrrr mateys!

Today we wanted to introduce you to the team who will be rating the proposals we receive. Last year we received well over 80 proposals and as you can imagine it’s very hard to choose from all the fantastic proposals we receive in order to fill an interesting schedule. Because we wanted to widen the background of the people making these decisions we’ve asked the help of some Ruby friends.

Allow me to introduce (drumroll please…)

  • Floor Drees, member of the organizing team of Rails Girls Summer of Code, serial Rails Girls workshop organizer, ex-vienna.rb, leading lady behind Linz and
  • Paul Fedory, developer at Mint Digital and conference organiser extraordinaire at DevsLoveBacon. We’ve noticed ArrrrCamp’s and Bacon’s values overlap a lot.
  • Oana Sipos, Rails Girls Summer of Code 2013 participant turned serial Rails Girls Brussels organiser
  • Simon Schoeters, allround web enthusiast and freelance developer with a long ArrrrCamp history

And of course there’s the team within Openminds:

  • Mike and Steven, devops engineers
  • Joren and Hannes, developers

We’re confident that drawing from this wide range of experiences and values allows us to compose a diverse and interesting schedule.

Remember that our call for proposals is open until the 16th of May! If anything is holding you back from submitting yours please reach out. We’re more than happy to assist!

On becoming a single track conference

We organized the first editions of ArrrrCamp in an unconference-style manner. A BarCamp if you will (get it?) with two tracks. As ArrrrCamp grew into a real conference we kept the format as it worked great.

We have now decided it is time to turn ArrrrCamp into a single track conference.

The search for a new venue

As we began to prepare the 2014 edition we knew we wanted to visit other venues to see if we found a better option than last year’s venue. We knew we wanted to keep the conference in Ghent, and not only because it is convenient for us in terms of logistics. Ghent is a vibrant historical city and it seems everyone enjoys their time here.

Because we wanted to narrow the search down to Ghent we would have to consider a single track conference. The requirement of two separate and well isolated rooms that offer a certain level of comfort was proving tough to meet.

Weighing the pros and cons

After visiting 6 venues it became clear only two were real options. Our old venue which allows for both single and dual track and the new one where dual track was an option, but rather inconvenient. We considered location, comfort of the rooms, atmosphere of the lounge and of course the ability to make everyone our famous cocktails.

But the most important factor was still the variety of talks. How could a single track match up to our old dual track format?

The hallway track

We always were strong believers in the value of the hallway track. The discussions that are had at a conference are just as important as the sessions themselves. It’s with this in mind that we increased the breaks from 20 to 30 minutes in 2013. Another important aspect is the feeling of togetherness during a conference.

The single track format is our answer to the question of how to increase the bond between our attendees.

At ArrrrCamp 2014 we’ll not only be able to have lunch and coffee together, we’ll also spend the breaks together in the lounge. We’ll attend sessions together, we’ll share stories and drinks at the fringe events.

We can’t wait!

Announcing ArrrrCamp 2014

Arrrr mateys,

We are very happy to announce that ArrrrCamp is gearing up for edition 8, this time to be held on October 2nd and 3rd in our trusty city of Ghent. This edition will bring a number of changes, with the conference using a single track schedule and a fancy new venue as the biggest ones.

First things first though.

We’re opening the call for proposals as of today, and we’re hoping you’ll join our crew. This year we’re hosting all our speakers at a hotel within 3 minutes walking distance of the venue, right in the middle of the city.

Are you not sure if you should submit a proposal? Do you have questions or doubts about the conference, the organizers, preparing a slide deck or talking in front of strangers? We’re more than happy to help out. More than a couple people have given their very first talks at ArrrrCamp. Just get in touch!

The process is anonymous, with your personal information hidden from us until after the selection process. We consider our attendees and our crew as a supportive, welcoming and generous bunch of people and implemented a Code of Conduct to back up that sentiment.

I hope you go submit a proposal and we’ll see you in October!