BathCampBathCamp is back with a vengeance with a second event on 28 April, following its successful relaunch as part of the Bath Digital Festival back in February. The group, which is organised by local web developer Paul Leader, regularly gets together for a series of interesting talks and a tipple or two.

Holding no qualms over the topic (so long as it’s interesting), BathCamp has been known to have talks on anything from web, mobile and design, to hacking, startups, robotics and more!

This month’s event, named ‘The Internet of Real Life: Home Automation, the IoT, and Location Aware Apps‘ will be held at the Guild Coworking Hub in Bath, featuring 3 exciting speakers.

BathCamp April Talks

Amazon’s Alexa and the Smart Home
Sam Machin (@sammachin)

The Echo is turning out to be Amazon’s trojan horse device, currently only available in the US, it’s rapidly becoming the hub of the smart home able to interface to a growing number of devices. Sam will be taking his audience through some of the integrations he has done with his imported Echo, showing what works well along with what doesn’t.

He’ll also look at what the limitations are of using a US device in the UK and some of the hacks to get around this. Sam has spent way too much time (and money) over the last few months buying lots of smart home devices from various manufacturers and so he’ll also share the architecture of his home too (no, not the kind of thing Kevin McCloud would be talking about on Channel 4).

AWS IoT – a cloud platform for building Internet of Things (IoT) applications
Andy Powell (@andypowe11)

As part of its suite of cloud tools, Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers an IoT platform that enables you to connect devices to AWS services and other devices, exchange and process data securely, and enable applications to interact with devices even when they are offline.

This talk will provide an introduction to the IoT platform and will use a simple homemade healthcare ‘reminder’ device (built using a Raspberry Pi) to demonstrate its capabilities.

Creating Location Aware apps for the WOMAD festival with Beacons
The Team from Blispa (@BlispaUK)

tom and blispa beaconsBlispa (its lead developer Tom Fletcher, is pictured right) has built a location driven festival guide for WOMAD. It uses beacons to trigger content in the app like the profile of the band you’re listening to, or the timetable for the stage you’re at.

Beacons are better than GPS for this because they don’t drain your phone’s battery. Blispa also use beacons to power a treasure-hunt around the WOMAD site, to allow parents to see where their children are, and to gather footfall information for the festival organisers and sponsors. The Blispa team will demo what they’ve built and talk about the problems with beacons they’ve encountered while developing this app.

Get involved

As well as finding out about these new and interesting technologies from the BathCamp talks, you can get involved yourself by giving a 5-minute lightning talk on any subject. BathCamp aims to have 2 lightning talks at each event and it’s a great way to try out a new idea or have a go at practising your public speaking. To get involved, head over to the BathCamp meetup page and send a message to the organiser, Paul Leader.

BathCamp’s last event was such a success that this April’s event is now full! However, you can still join BathCamp to get notifications of the next meetup and stick yourself on the BathCamp April waiting list for the chance of a place if someone drops out. You can also stay up-to-date with BathCamp events by following their Twitter feed: @BathCamp.

Alice Whale