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The coders group at Free Geek is the place you can learn or teach about software programming and development. We normally do this at coders workshops.

Coders workshops meet weekly on Tuesdays at 7:15. They are open to all -- experienced and new coders alike. The only requirement is that you want to help and learn or teach in the process. We try to team up experienced folks with newbies. We only work on stuff we actually use, so your work is always needed.

While most coders live in the Portland area and come in to Free Geek to volunteer, coding is the one volunteer opportunity at Free Geek that is available to people outside our local area. If you want to help out and live outside the Portland, Oregon area, sign up for the mailing list (see #Getting_Started below) and ask about how to plug in, or do the same on IRC!

Coding Projects

Here are some projects we are working on at Free Geek:

FGdb -- This is PHP code ( ) that talks to a PostgreSQL database ( ).

FGdiag -- Python code ( ) used for testing gizmos.

FGsched -- This will be used for maintaining jobs to do, workers who can do them, shifts in which they are done, and scheduling workers into those shifts. This is still very early in development.

Distro Implementation -- Figure out how to get the software onto the boxes we build, and how to make it work like we want it to.

Other Coding Projects -- There are usually a variety of smaller tasks that need doing, often using shell scripting.

Getting Started

If any of the above projects interest you, you may want to join the coders. we're open to anyone so long as the work you do is done cooperatvely with other Free Geek volunteers and you're willing to let it be licensed under an open source license, preferably the GPL.

To get started:

In the Portland, Oregon, USA area?

  • Sign up for the coders mailing list (email lists for coders)
    • Post a message and introduce yourself
    • If you're in the Portland, Oregon area, you'll want to come down to Free Geek to meet the other local coders and get started. Ask for a "coders orientation". We typically hold orientations as needed at 6:30 pm on Tuesday evenings. At the orientation, we will help you get set up.

Somewhere else?

Wherever you are:

Programming Classes

When the current version of FGdb was being planned we held two classes so that we'd have several coders with a common base of knowledge. The outlines for these two classes are available online:

If you need to understand how databases work in general, please study these as soon as possible.

Big Picture Stuff

  • Rethinking Coders -- thoughts on how the coders program can be improved and where it's going.