BarCamp Canberra is back!

Hi and welcome from the 2016 unorganising team.

After taking a break last year, we’re back and preparing for a new event, featuring a day of impromptu talks on interesting topics spanning technology, arts, government, usability, innovation and more.
We’re looking to hold the event on either the first or second Saturday of April, so keep those dates free. However that’s subject to change depending on venue availability.

To be notified when we confirm the date, please join our mailing list (see the form on each page). We’ll email you to let you know when and where it will be held and when you can register for the event. Don’t know what a BarCamp is? Start here

We need your help

This is the sixth year for the event and we wanted to ask you, as the attendees, presenters and supporters, for some advice on how we rethink some key things.

Firstly, we’ll like your views on whether we should rename BarCamp Canberra, and what the new name might be. ‘BarCamp’ is not well known as a concept and, let’s face it, lacks impact – we’d love your suggestions on what we could call the event moving forward.

Secondly, we’d like your views on whether there’s anything we should change about the approach to the event on the day. Is there anything you think we can improve, tweak or add to make it an even greater experience than in last years?

Leave your comments below, or if you want to make them privately, email

Call out to sponsors

We run this event on less than a shoe string – and every dollar or service provided in support helps the day become more special and fulfilling for participants.

If you or your organisation is interested in supporting the longest running Canberra grassroots unconference, please email us today.

Video update

Hello again,

Just a quick message to the email list about videos from Barcamp Canberra 2104. This is the 2nd last email you will get for now – once the videos are online, Barcamp Canberra will go into hibernation for another year.

So far, we have 11 videos published to youtube, and about 5 more to publish over the next week or so. If you haven’t seen them yet, make sure you visit the barcamp Canberra website or youtube channel to take a look. And if you had a favourite talk, make sure you leave a comment and a ‘thumbs up’ to let us know.

And don’t forget, we’d love to see your photos in the flickr group and your blog posts. Let us know what you have got!

All done for 2014

Schedule at the close of Barcamp Canberra 2014
Schedule at the close of Barcamp Canberra 2014

Thanks to everyone who came along to Barcamp Canberra in 2014 – we had a great group of people and lots of great talks. A big thank you to Inspiring Australia who provided sponsorship for the event and to the volunteers who helped with organisation or lent a hand on the day.

Some photos are starting to appear on Flickr – make sure you take a look and add comments, tags etc to help describe the photos.

Over the next few weeks, we will edit and publish the videos. I think we have video of all the sessions in the conference rooms, except for the first 2 sessions (the technology took a while to warm up). It would be great to see each of the videos captioned. We have some options for how to do this – we may put out a call for people to help.

Each video will get a blog post on this website. We’re happy to include any related info from the presenter in the blog post – so if you have a slide deck, software download or whatever let us know and we will include it. Similarly, if you send in your presentation materials, we may be able to edit them into the video which can make them videos much better to watch. Send any materials to If they are large files – send us a dropbox link or similar.

We’d really like to hear your feedback from the event, especially if you travelled to Canberra – but a survey sounds like hard work 🙂 If you can take a moment to jot down some brief comments and post them in the comments below or send them to that would be great.

These questions might get you started:

  • What was your favourite session?
  • Why did you come to Barcamp?
  • Would you come again next year?
  • How would you explain Barcamp to a friend?
  • What worked about the event?
  • What didn’t work about the event?
  • Did you think the venue was ok?
  • Would you like to be an unorganiser next year?
  • Anything else you want to tell us?

Thanks again to everyone who contributed to put on a great event – that means everyone who was there. A DIY conference doesn’t happen without people to put it together.

Follow us in all the usual channels. Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and join the mailing list using the form at the right of this page.

Stay tuned for videos – and for Barcamp Canberra 2015. You can see all the existing  Barcamp Canberra videos here.

Barcamp Canberra – this Saturday!

Just a few days now before a great day of ideas and information sharing at Barcamp Canberra 2014. We are going to have a great day – here are things you should know before you arrive.

Places still available

We have room for more people – bring a friend! Register here


Don’t forget, we are at a new venue this year at Gungahlin Library.


  • Registrations start at 9:00 with the first session starting at 9:30.
  • There are five  20 minute sessions in the morning, with lunch at 12:15 and cupcakes 2:45.
  • The last session finishes at about 4:15pm
  • Ruth and Gavin will do a “Barcamp for newbies” session at the start of the day – this is a great way to begin your day if you are new to Barcamp and not sure where to start.

Talks can be on almost anything

But the audience can vote with their feet. Make sure your talk is engaging and gives your audience something valuable. Don’t feel limited to giving a lecture with powerpoint (please!).

There are also some rules of Barcamp that you can read here


As with past years, please bring your own name tag. You can make it fancy to make an impression or just keep it simple 🙂

We need volunteers on the day

If you can help out with a job on the day, get in touch. You’ll score a cool tshirt for your efforts! More info here.


Thanks to support from our partner, we are providing fresh whole fruit for morning tea.

We are running a cupcake camp, which will provide afternoon tea. Please make sure your delicious cupcakes are ready to serve and labelled with your name and the type of cake. If you are bringing cupcakes that suit people with special dietary needs, make sure you also note that on the label too.


Unlike past years, we aren’t providing lunch this year. While it has been great to put on lunch, it also requires a lot of organisation and adds a risk leaving people hungry or running over time. Given Barcamp is an unconference, we thought it might be better to let you find your own lunch. You can bring your own, or buy something nearby. There are a couple of supermarkets and bakeries nearby, along with sushi, noodles, mexican, burgers and lots of other options.

Lunch will be between 12:15 and 13:15 – so you will have time to find something you like.

BYO lunch also means that people with special dietary needs can have something that they know they will enjoy.


Coffee is available before 10am from a couple of nearby cafes on Hibberson St. After 10am there is a cafe on the main level of the library that makes great coffee.


There are also boiling / chilled water dispensers in each of the rooms we are using. Please BYO your own cup/mug/drinkbottle.

Recording talks

We will record video from the two conference rooms to capture the ideas from the day. At this stage we also plan to livestream talks from Conference Room 1. If you are giving a talk that you would prefer not to record/stream – make sure you use Conference room 2, and let the Room God know not to record you.

You can see videos from past years here.


The hashtag for this year is #bcc2014. Feel free to use this hashtag when you post photos to flickr or youtube videos or other places too.

What to bring

  • Water bottle
  • Mug/keepcup
  • Nametag
  • Cupcakes
  • Notepad
  • Ideas
  • An enquiring mind 🙂


You can email the Barcamp Canberra team at or tweet us at @barcampcanberra

Can’t make it?

You can follow along via the live video stream, and by keeping an eye on the hashtag.

If you have registered to attend, but can’t make it – don’t forget to cancel your ticket here

CupcakeCamp is back for 2014


Attendees enjoying cupcakes at BarCamp Canberra
BarCamp Canberra attendees enjoying a range of cupcakes from CupcakeCamp. Photo by Gavin Tapp

CupcakeCamp is returning to Barcamp Canberra 2014! So what is CupcakeCamp? From

CupcakeCamp is an ad-hoc community gathering born from the desire for people to share and eat cupcakes in an open environment. CupcakeCamp was originally created by Ariel Waldman.

In the spirit of openness and community, CupcakeCamp is about sharing your yummy homemade cupcakes with your fellow BarCamp Canberra attendees, so people can eat them for free at the event. The event will happen on the same day and place as BarCamp Canberra – 15th March 2014, at afternoon tea time.

We will run a ‘People’s Choice’ award for people’s favourite cupcake. A fun prize will be awarded to the People’s Choice cupcake.

Linux penguins 2013 cupcakes
Linux penguin cupcakes made by Lana Brindley. Photo by Ruth Ellison

I want to take part. What do I need to do?

CupcakeCamp is opened to everyone. To take part, just bring along your finished cupcakes to BarCamp Canberra. All cupcakes will need to be at BarCamp Canberra by 12pm, in time for the event at afternoon tea time. There are no limits on how many cupcakes you can bring.

To make it easier for everyone, we suggest the following:

  • Make a sign explaining what it is (e.g. “Triple choc cupcakes”, “Beer batter maple bacon cupcakes”)
  • List the ingredients that it may contain so those with allergies will know what’s in it
  • A way to display your cupcakes – doesn’t have to be fancy.
Beer batter maple bacon cupcakes
Beer batter maple bacon cupcakes, photo by Sharen Scott

Do we bake or decorate the cupcakes at the event?

Nope. Please bring your finished cupcakes ready to go.  You’ll be too busy enjoying the rest of Barcamp Canberra to be decorating cupcakes 🙂

Can I take part even if I don’t bring cupcakes?

Yes. This is about openness and collaboration. Let’s eat collaboratively.

Range of cupcakes laid on a table
Cupcakes at an earlier BarCamp Canberra event. Photo by Gavin Tapp.

Save the date for Barcamp Canberra – March 15, 2014

We have a venue, and can announce that Barcamp Canberra 2014 will take place on March 15 at Gungahlin Library.

More details to come in the next week or two. Make sure you follow us on Twitter or join the mailing list using the form at the right of this page.

In keeping with the Unconference style, we are keeping things pretty lean this year. Its all about having a great community of people on the day. If you want to get involved, we will need some on the day helpers and of course, you can always channel your energy into running a session.

If you are interested in sponsoring, please get in touch. Most sponsors chip in between $100 and $500 which goes toward food and drink. We are also considering micro sponsorship with stickers or tshirts as a reward. Leave a comment below if you would be interested in this option.

We are considering not providing lunch this year. There are quite a few good lunch options near the venue, and it means that people can have a better selection to suit their diet. Lunch also tends to be the most difficult part of the day in terms of pleasing people and arranging logistics.  Happy to take comments on this too – especially if you have ideas about how lunch can be a continuation of the event rather than an interruption.

We also intend for Cupcake Camp to return again for 2014. We are looking for prizes and judges.

BarCamp Canberra 2013

Interested in sharing ideas? You’ll be excited to know that BarCamp Canberra is returning in 2013.

The team of unorganisers are just awakening from their hibernation, and will start putting plans together. It’s likely that BarCamp Canberra 2013 will take place in late Feb or early March 2013. The venue for the last two years has been at ANU, but it may change for 2013.

If you are new to BarCamp, and puzzled by what it could mean – just think of it as an event where people organise their own conference when the day begins and then share ideas and make connections. It’s a great opportunity to share something you have been working on, find people to collaborate with or demonstrate some skills. Check out the what to expect page for more information.

Last year there were sessions on puppetry, open government, startups, nerf guns, photo blogging, a hands on design workshop and loads of other stuff. Take a look at some of the photos from 2012. Its impossible to say what will happen at BarCamp Canberra in 2013 – you’ll have to come along and see.

At this stage it would be great to hear from people that are interested in volunteering to help with organisation, people / businesses / organisations that are interested in providing sponsorship. Suggestions for venues are also welcome. Other than that, it’s never too soon to start thinking about ideas you might share at Barcamp Canberra. Please post a comment below if you are interested in volunteering or sponsorship.

BarCamp Canberra 2011 yum cha

It’s become a yearly tradition of organising a post-BarCamp yumcha with new and old BarCamp friends.

This year’s gathering will be held at Noble Palace in Woden, Canberra. This is opened to all barcamp attendees plus partners and children.


  • Date: Sunday 20th March 2011
  • Time: 10.30am to about 12 noon
  • Place: Noble Palace, 8-30 Corinna Street, Phillip, Canberra.
  • Cost: About $25-$27 per person (depending upon what the table has ordered)
  • Register at:

RSVPs are required as the restaurant is a very popular place and gets booked out very quickly.

Please note that this is not a free event. Based on past yum cha experiences at this restaurant, the average cost per person is about $25-$27/person.

Parking is available near the restaurant but can sometimes be difficult to find. Alternatively, there is underground parking available at the supermarket entrance. There is apparently 2 hours free parking at the underground car park.

Looking forward to seeing you there for some yummy yum cha goodness!
Register for BarCamp Canberra 2011 yum cha in Canberra, Australian Capital Territory  on Eventbrite

Make-a-badge competition

In an effort to be more sustainable and to do something useful with all those lanyards and badges we keep collecting from numerous events, we’re running a make-a-badge competition. Every attendee is encouraged to make and bring a badge to wear on the day of the event.

The best two badges will each win an awesome prize of a ticket to TEDxCanberra 2011 (which sold out within 48 hours last year…)

The rules: nothing rude, something preferably smaller than your body size 🙂

Things to consider including on your badge:

  • name
  • twitter name
  • topics you’re interested in
  • any other creative stuff!