Saturday, July 07, 2007

FullCodePress (part two)

So as you know from a previous blog post, I finally finished my application for FullCodePress the night before entries closed. Nothing like pacing yourself to get something done on time! Then I waited with baited breath.

On Tuesday I found out I was in the long shortlist - the top 7 HTML/CSS coder-uppers - WOOHOO! I did a Snoopy Happy Dance and got down to answering all the questions we were given - this was to help the judges select the Top Three. Tom got into the long shortlist for Programmers, Thomas was in the long shortlist for Project Managers and Romain from our Auckland office was in for Designers. Wow! Shift was really representin'!

On Wednesday I sat at my computer all day checking my in-box and refreshing the FullCodePress website - nothing... nothing... nothing... and then finally, late in the evening, there it was - the Top Three lists for each discipline. The three boys were all selected for their respective Top Three and...

...I wasn't. Gutted! I did make the "close runners-up" mention for HTML/CSS together with two others, but I was a bit sad, to say the least.

However, I was TOTALLY excited on behalf of Tom, Thomas and Romain, and also for my lovely friends Zef who made the Top Three for User Experience/IA, PJ for Writing and Mark who was up against Tom in Programming.

Shift did incredibly well. Three Shifties in the Top Three (and one close runner-up [me]) plus an additional two ex-Shifties (my friend Mark and Haydn Thomsen, who was in the Project Manager Top Three along with Thomas). Not bad!

We knew from the rules that a maximum of two people from the same company could be on the team, so it was pretty self-evident that Tom, Thomas and Romain wouldn't all be selected, but we were all crossing our fingers and hoping for at least one Shiftie, or maybe even two.

The next step in the selection process was down to luck. One name from the three for each role was pulled out of a hat - and that was to be the team. They did the hat-pick yesterday. Again there I was, refreshing the FullCodePress website all day and... Thomas got the Project Manager role! Woohoo!

Tom and Romain both missed out (awwwww! bummer! major bummer!), but Zef, PJ and Mark all got picked! Kewl! It's gonna be a pretty good team I reckon.

It's funny, I was so sad not to get chosen, and so happy at the same time for all the people I know who did get picked. I kept on re-thinking my questions and answers, wondering where I'd gone wrong, or not said enough (and I wrote an essay for my answers - maybe I wrote too much, I thought to myself). As I don't really know any of the other HTML/CSS people who got a mention, I'm not sure if it was that they are better at CSS than me, or that they can do programming in addition to CSS, or what it was... but anyway, there you go. I'm very proud of myself for getting into the top 7 at any rate. Not bad for less than 2 years doing pure CSS.

Ross was a bit cynical about the whole thing. He reckons it's an ego thing for the people wanting to take part, and nothing more. I disagree. Yes there is an element of ego, sure - if you're a perfectionist about your work (as I am) and a bit of a geek (as I am), then yes, of course you want to measure yourself against the rest of the geeks out there who do the same thing that you do.

But for me it's much more than that. I love my job. I'm incredibly lucky, I know. I do web stuff for fun - I do it in my spare time - with this blog, and the Gathering Archive website (which I will eventually finish, I promise!) and a whole bunch of other stuff. So for me the idea of the competition itself is totally cool. It's cool on a whole lot of levels:

It's cool because two non-profit organisations get a working website out of this, for free, and that's just brilliant.

It's cool because of the challenge in and of itself - can each person, as an individual and as a representative of their discipline, do their part within the time available, and make their bit work? That's a big challenge - and therefore hugely appealing.

It's cool because those 6 individuals have to work as a team to get the site built in 24 hours. Everyone has to muck in and help each other if they can. As a team they have to figure out how to break the 24 hours down into workable sections, during which time various members of the team will be madly doing their bit, while the others help out wherever necessary. Each member of the team has to stick to their allotted timeframe, and get it done because if they don't, it's going to impact on the next person in the chain, and the timeline is going to fall apart.

If the team is clever, they'll be able to work out a system where [edited in case the Aussie team is reading this. Heh heh]. Cool, cool, cool.

It's cool because we get to go up against the Aussies and any chance we get to beat the Aussies is obviously a Good Thing :)

And for me, being a new New Zealander (well, not that new any more, but you know what I mean) - and although this might sound a bit silly to some of you - the thought of representing my country at something I'm good at - well, let's just say, it was mighty appealing.

Anyway, so there you go. FullCodePress is one great idea, and I hope the inaugural competition goes really well. Good luck to my friends Thomas, Zef, PJ, and Mark, and good luck too to the other members of the team, Steve Dennis (designer) and Jeffrey Wegesin (HTML/CSS coder-upper) - I know y'all are going to RAWK!!!

<smallvoice> wish there were some girls on our team... that would be cool... </smallvoice>

Awesome! I'm on the team!

Technorati tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .


zef said...

I agree with your 'small voice' -goes to show the imbalance evident in the NZ IT industry.

As for 'ego' - maybe a tad (nothing wrong with that, within reason) - but for me it's more about being constantly challenged - and I'm sure fullcodepress will do just that!

John Lewis said...

I totally, 100%, absolutely and completely know how you feel. Maybe we can pull out our Tonya Harding on Jeffrey ;)

I'm sure the team will do us proud!