Welcome to TechSPARK’s events round-up, summarising the upcoming digital, startup and tech events in Bristol and Bath!

Sponsored by SETsquared Bristol, Hi-Tech Incubator.

*Featured Event* VR World Congress, Bristol, 11-13 April

VRWC has become an unmissable occasion: an industry-leading VR conference, expo and matchmaking event now spanning three jam-packed days with a raft of world-class speakers and exhibitors. VRWC17 will take place in three of Bristol’s most unique venues, bringing 2000 international guests to one of the UK’s leading tech sectors.

The three-day event is centred around Millennium Square, home to the At-Bristol Science Centre and Planetarium. The expo will take place on the Square itself with At-Bristol and The Watershed hosting talks, meetings and other events.

VR World Congress is tailored for both industry professionals and consumers, so if you’re looking to make a start in VR, an experienced industry veteran, or just interested in the possibilities of the tech, there’ll be plenty for you to discover.

Find out more about VR World Congress and grab your tickets.

Technologies, Trends & Processes for 3D Design & Manufacturing, Bristol & Bath Science Park, Bristol, 4 April @ 9am – 12.30pm

This briefing event, held by The Institute of Directors, Centre for Modelling & Simulation (CFMS) and HiETA Technologies will focus on the evolution of technologies, trends and processes used in 3D design and manufacturing.

Presenting an overview of current 3D technologies and trends, delegates will also learn about the future for 3D design and manufacturing and the need for a thorough lifecycle approach/process for modern engineering design systems.

RSVP for free to the Technologies, Trends & Processes for 3D Design & Manufacturing via the CFMS website.

SETsquared #Idea2Pitch, The Engine Shed, Bristol, 4 April @ 2 – 6pm

Do you have a great high tech business idea, but don’t know where to start? Or are you unsure what to do next in order to grow your technology company? Then sign up for the #Idea2Pitch event hosted by SETsquared Bristol to help hone your ideas, and shape them into a pitch for gaining interest or support in your venture.

The event includes an interactive workshop on what makes a good business idea, how to pitch it for maximum effect and an introduction to SETsquared, the Global No.1 university-backed business incubator.

Find out more about SETsquared #Idea2Pitch and apply to attend.

Bristol Quantum Information Technologies Workshop, M Shed, Bristol, 5 – 7 April

The Bristol Quantum Information Technologies Workshop will return from the 5-7 April 2017 with a new programme of speakers and panellists bringing you everything you need to know about the emerging field of Quantum Technology.

Find out more about the Bristol Quantum Information Technologies Workshop.

Simpleweb Challenge Hacknight: Secrets, Bristol, 5 April @  6.15pm

Simpleweb is partnering with visual authentication providers PixelPin and inviting attendees to create working prototypes or concepts for apps around the theme of ‘secrets’.

Whether you want to securely share data at work, protect your photos or mask yourself from CCTV, you’re invited to create the future of secrets. Great apps aren’t just about tech, so as well as developers, Simpleweb is inviting all creative, business-minded and ideas people to get involved. Whatever your area of expertise, everyone is welcome.

Join the Simpleweb meetup group and RSVP for your free place here, but be quick, there are only a few spots left!

South West Founders, Watershed, Bristol, 5 April @ 7pm

South West Founders is a monthly meetup for people based in the South-West who have been, are, or want to be tech startup founders.

They welcome entrepreneurs and tech investors with open arms, as well as those who have a genuine interest in founding or mentoring startup businesses.

Check out the South West Founders and RSVP to its April meetup.

BathSPARK: Coffee & Networking, The Guild Coworking Hub, Bath, 6 April @ 10.30am – 12pm

BathSPARK’s drop-in coffee mornings are a very informal networking forum, where you can come along and meet others who work in tech in the region.

Whether you’ve just moved your business to the area and would like to build your network, or if you’re well established in the region, feel free to pop down, have a coffee courtesy of the lovely people at the Guild Co-working Hub, and a friendly chat.

Join BathSPARK for free to sign-up to attend Coffee and Networking at the Guild Coworking Hub.

UX Cheltenham: The UX of Bots with Martin Kearn, The Strand Bar, Cheltenham, 6 April @ 6.30pm

UX Cheltenham is a group for anyone of all skill levels interested in user experience (UX) design, user interface (UI) design, usability and related subjects.

This month they’re meeting to hear from speaker Martin Kearn on the UX of bots.

Join UX Cheltenham to RSVP for free to the UX of Bots meetup this April.

Bristech Talks Night, The Engine Shed, Bristol, 6 April @ 7 – 9pm

Bristech is a meetup for those interested in the more technical side of well… tech. This month it’s welcoming two speakers – Alex Sheehan-Dare who’ll cover isomorphic (or universal) apps and Jonny Tyers who’ll help the audience get their head around cyber and hacking – and just how it’s done.

The popularity of Bristech’s meetups is quite impressive and unfortunately this one is oversubscribed, but you can try your luck by sticking your name on the waiting list.

Make sure you don’t miss out on future Bristech meetups by signing up the Bristech meetup group.

Taunton (and area) Developers: An Introduction to Xamarin Forms, Taunton, 13 April @ 6.30 – 8.30pm

A group for developers living in or around the Taunton area to meet, hang out and to give/watch presentations on various programming related topics.

This meetup will provide an introduction to Xamarin Forms – building native UIs for iOS, Android and Windows from a single, shared C# codebase. Presented by Martin Rock-Evans.

Join Taunton Developers and RSVP to attend the next meetup.

AI Systems for Society Tutorial & Hackathon, Revolution, Bath, 18 April @ 2 – 8pm

This is a free tutorial and hackathon event being run alongside AISB 2017 – an annual conference organised by the Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour, covering the range of AI, Machine Learning and Cognitive Science.

The workshop will include several tutorials followed by the opportunity to try out software and write code. The theme of the tutorials will be building artificially intelligent (AI) systems to work within society.

Entry is by ticket only and numbers are limited, so those interested are encouraged to book early. Book your place to the AISB workshop here.

Panel Discussion: The Ethical Impact of AI on Society, University of Bath, 19 April @ 5.30am – 7pm

Techniques from artificial intelligence (AI) are becoming more and more used in modern day technology. A panel of four world-leading AI experts will discuss and debate the ethical implications that using AI has or will have on our society.

All attendees are invited to join a reception afterwards for a more informal discussion of the topic.

This panel is part of the annual AISB 2017 and is open to the public free of charge.

Register for a free place at the AI panel discussion via Eventbrite.

Bristol DevOps: HumanOps, BaseKit, Bristol, 19 April @ 7pm

DevOps Bristol is a group for people who are involved in or interested in configuration management tools, monitoring, continuous delivery, cloud computing and DevOps culture.

This month the group is meeting for a talk from Hannah Foxwell, a Product Manager at Server Density, on the very human aspects of DevOps and why we need to take a more human approach to DevOps transformation.

Find out more about DevOps Bristol and RSVP to attend its April meetup.

CreaTech Mayoral Hustings, The Engine Shed, Bristol, 20 April @ 8.30 – 10am

It’s that time of year again and the Engine Shed is inviting candidates for the position of West of England Combined Authority Mayor to discuss their plans and aspirations for the region’s creative and tech sector.

As a local citizen or business, this is a great opportunity to understand the aspirations and characters of those wishing to lead the new combined authority and to make your views known to them.

To get an idea of how the event works, you can find out more about the 2016 Mayoral Hustings here.

Find out more about the CreaTech Mayoral Hustings and RSVP to confirm your place.

TechSPARK: TechRIDE – a healthier type of networking, Mokoko, Bristol, 21 April @ 8 – 9.30am

With Bristol this year’s European City of Sport, we thought it is about time for us techies, tech-curious, founders and entrepreneurs to get involved, get on the saddle and talk tech.

This time we’ll be meeting at Mokoko on Gaol Ferry Steps at 8am (they’re open from 7.30 if anyone wants to grab an espresso before we head off).

Ride from 8 – 9.30am, followed by cosy coffees and pastries at Mokoko for those who can stick around.

Grab your bike and RSVP for free to TechSPARK’s TechRIDE.


Cheltenham Geeks: So you want a high performing team?, Deep Space Works, Cheltenham, 24 April @ 7.30 – 10.30pm

Cheltenham Geek Nights is a place for software developers, designers and general techies to get together, learn and have fun. This month they have Mark Bentley, Scrum Master and Technical Team Lead at UCAS.

He’ll be sharing his experience transitioning from an 18-year hands-on technical role to a leadership role building two high performing teams, and the repeatable patterns learned.

Find out more about Cheltenham Geeks and RSVP for free to attend its April meetup.

SQL Bristol Talks Evening, Ovo Energy, Bristol, 25 April @ 6pm

SQL Bristol has been formed to offer knowledge sharing and networking opportunities for anyone interested in data including professionals, techies, researchers or simply those with an interest in data applications and technologies.

This month they’re inviting attendees to hear from two speakers, Terry McCann on ‘Why TSQL was language of the year’ and Simon Whiteley on ‘Azure SQL DataWarehouse Reflections’.

Find out more about the talks at SQL Bristol and RSVP for free to attend.

Bath Machine Learning Meetup: Project Night, The Guild Coworking Hub, Bath, 26 April @ 6 – 7.30pm

Bath Machine Learning is for anyone interested in data science, particularly machine learning and its applications. All are welcome, whether beginner or expert.

At this project evening, members are invited to work on the meetup’s machine learning project ‘Predicting Parking Spaces in Bath’.

Join the Bath Machine Learning meetup to RSVP for free to its project night.

Agile Bath & Bristol: Exercises in Lean-Agile transformation, Bristol, 26 April @ 7pm

This group is open to anyone in Bath & Bristol (and the surrounding areas) interested in Scrum and Agile practices.

At this meetup, the group will be taken through exercises in at least one of the Lean-Agile transformations by Mike – the founder of Agendashift, author of the book Kanban from the Inside, consultant, coach, and trainer.

Get involved by joining the Agile Bath & Bristol meetup group for free.

BrisSynBio Connect, The Engine Shed, Bristol, 27 April @ 2 – 9pm

This event is the climax of BrisSynBio’s 4-Day More Business Acumen course. You will have the opportunity to see future synthetic biology entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to real biotech investors.

This event will be showcasing the most exciting translational research from BrisSynBio and you can learn about cutting-edge synthetic biology products and applications from leading UK industrialists.

Register soon for BrisSynBio Connect as places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

SW Cloud meetup, Bristol, 27 April @ 6 – 9pm

If you are interested in IaaS (Amazon Web Services, Azure) or Paas (Heroku, OpenShift) and if you love writing distributed software, building systems or wiring up the fundamental infrastructure of the cloud, this is the meetup for you.

SW Cloud covers topics from many providers and technologies and welcomes all, whether you’re a seasoned veteran or just starting to use the cloud.

Join SW Cloud and RSVP to its April meetup to be notified with further details.

*One to watch* Bristol Open Data

Bristol Open Data joined the global network of Open Data Institute (ODI) Nodes in the summer of 2015. The Bristol Node is run by a group of volunteers active in the field. There are ODI Nodes all over the world, and Bristol Open Data works closely with them and ODI HQ to share learning, innovations and inspiration. As a Community Node, this group’s main focus is to continue to build and support an open data ecosystem for the city of Bristol.

You can join Bristol Open Data for free for notifications on their first meetup.

If you have an upcoming tech or creative event we haven’t mentioned in this list or on our events calendar… tell us about it! 

If you want to stay in the loop with the best of tech news, events, jobs and more in the South West, sign up to the TechSPARK newsletter.

Alice Whale