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Open Office Hours

Open office hours are Byte's way of adding to our local tech scene and opening our doors to new people and ideas in technology. Every Friday from 3-5pm we hold our office hours for developers and designers to learn and share methods in coding, design, workflow, and tools. Whatever your experience, you can bring in your laptop and get feedback from our professional developers & designers. Show us your code, get some design feedback or just say hi at our open office hours.

What are open office hours?

Technology was supposed to be an democratizing, equalizing force to increase access for all people. Instead we've seen technology itself get harder and more exclusive. (Just ask Mark Zuckerberg about coders over 30.) Whenever a profession is dominated by exclusivity, it becomes monotoned and stagnant.

Even Milwaukee hasn't historically been open about technology, preferring proprietary knowledge over sharing. Milwaukee has also leaned too heavily on fashionable frameworks and off-the-shelf solutions like Wordpress and Drupal, making actual innovation scarce.

We want to see openness, innovation & progress return to Milwaukee, which means this industry must become open, inclusive and friendly to anyone & everyone. Organizations like Milwaukee Data Initiative and Meetups are challenging that status quo. We want to be a part of that change.

What can I learn at Byte’s open office hours?

Get started in web development. Learn or share workflows. Learn or share development tools. Get a little guidance on a personal project. Work on a physical computing project. Build something without a framework. Build your own server. Create something new. You tell us!

Though, since we don't do cheap Wordpress sites or super-salesy sites, we're not going to be good at helping with Wordpress or Drupal problems, spammy SEO, or methods to make the sites more factory-like.

It might help to know what we do in technology. Byte is an advanced development firm that eschews off-the-shelf software and fashionable frameworks for building things from scratch out of common, quick-to-learn, well supported languages. We work mostly with non-profits and people who are moving the world to a better place through building ideas and community. And since we fully support our software for years to come, we need it to be easy to support, so we create a strong process to keep it highly future friendly.

Who should come?

  • People who are new to tech, be it their first career interest or changing fields.
  • People who have a drive to learn but don’t know where to begin.
  • People who do tech now, but want to share something or learn something new.
  • People who know tech well, but want to build beyond the frameworks of the day.
  • People who know tech well, but want to build an innovation path to create new ideas.

How should you prepare?

  • Have a purpose, make it known on our form below.
  • Come prepared, do some research before you come.
  • Learn about Byte and the kind of work we do.

Office Hours Backgrounder

Open office hours are becoming more prevalent in the tech industry, and we welcome more opportunities to get new people and especially underrepresented people in tech . Here's some history about office hours, a similar project, and a better look on both ends of the equation. Byte is a mission-based digital studio that specializes in websites, web applications and interactive experiences. One of the first interactive studios in Milwaukee, Byte has been on the forefront of web standards, open data, web technology and interactive development with clients from coast to coast.

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