EricSkiff.com Open Source Everything

13Oct/073

Barcamp Timeline in Google Earth

BarCampTimeline Going to a lot of Barcamp and Podcamp events, I spend a lot of time telling people the original story of Barcamp, and explaining the name. If you don't know the story, Here's the 2 second version as I understand it. Barcamp was a slightly-tongue-in-cheek reaction to O'Reilly's invite only FooCamp, and the "Bar" stands for Bay Area Rejects, as well as being a programmer's in-joke (foo-bar).

Where FooCamp was invite-only, Barcamp went with a fight-club-esque "if you come to the event, you have to present" model, and people quickly realized that they could throw their own Barcamp in their home-town.

It's absolutely astounding how far Barcamp has spread since the initial camp in Palo Alto, and I was struck by the desire to see a CDC style map of the Barcamp idea spreading around the globe.

After talking with a few folks on the Barcamp mailing list, I've taken a first crack at it using KML, the XML markup language for Google Earth.

I've loaded in all the camps listed on barcamp.org from the beginning through the end of 2006.

http://glitchnyc.com/BarCampTimeline.kml
(right click and save - my server doesn't know how to handle KML yet, I'll fix it asap)

You'll need a somewhat recent version of Google Earth to view the timeline data in this file.

Some fun tricks:

If you select the "Barcamp Timeline" folder and then click on the clock next to the timeline at the top, and select "clamp beginning..." and "restrict time...", you can watch the Barcamp meme spread over the first year.

You can also hit the 'play' button under the folder of Barcamp placemarks to take a virtual tour, visiting each place that Barcamp has sprung up. It's amazing a) how many of these places I was completely ignorant about (where is Saskatoon? Vienna?) and b) just how far this idea has spread, and this just shows the first year!

I'll likely add 2007 soon. Consider this kml public domain, please add to it, make things from it, etc 🙂 Just be sure to let me know what you do with it!

Comments (3) Trackbacks (0)
  1. Hey Eric, this is great! I think the data might need to be cleaned up a bit, so I’ve made a Google Code project to get folks together on this:

    http://code.google.com/p/barcamp/

    Would love to see improvements to this first stab at a geo-timeline of BarCamps! 😉

  2. Dead Simple Google Earth Instructions:

    1. Open Google Earth.
    2. Go to “Add” in the menu and select “Network Link”
    3. Paste in the following link into the “Link” field and put whatever you want in the Name and Description fields. http://barcamp.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/timeline/BarCampTimeline.kml
    4. Enjoy.
  3. WOW, Eric! Way cool. I had no idea that BarCamp had had so many successful events! Nice!


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