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Nevertheless, whykay πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ’»πŸˆπŸ³οΈβ€πŸŒˆ (she/her) Coded in 2021!

whykay profile image whykay πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ’»πŸˆπŸ³οΈβ€πŸŒˆ (she/her) ・4 min read

This year was hard, it was harder than when Ireland went into lockdown in Feb 2020. We all worked from home, and yet, little by little I am figuring things out. I found DEV (through EuroPython friends) in June 2020, documenting my journey into learning how to sew, making electronic projects (a good excuse to play with CircuitPython), participated in an electronic workshop online (so I can see how to run one), but not much coding (funnily enough).

Up till now I'm still running PyLadies Dublin monthly meetups and I am still learning something new about live-streaming as things go wrong each month. πŸ’ͺ

Now it's 2021, I still have the crafting bug but not as much since I got my coding bug back! πŸ™Œ

My most recent achievement was…

...finally creating a site to curate tech events and diversity in tech events hosted by organisers based in Ireland and Northern Ireland.

I've been meaning to do this for years, it was on my huge bucket list and was something to save me time for past many years as I curate it for my monthly Coding Grace newsletters, and re-posted this list on Coding Grace blogs with follow ups (as events were announced after I published my newsletters).

Since Feb 2020, I curated lists of virtual events hosted by Irish and Northern Irish organisers as well as track tools used in the first three months of lockdown to see what people and other organisers are using. It quadrupled my volunteer workload. πŸ˜“πŸ₯±β˜•οΈπŸŒ™

There has to be a better way!

And I decided to roll up my sleeves a couple of months ago and tackle this long-term item that has been sitting way at the bottom of my bucket list.

BTW, before the curation of tech events for this project, the easiest way to get it up and going was the curated list of diversity in tech groups in Ireland and Northern Ireland. In the original post, I would note when they were added, removed, which area these groups cater for. Again, I hand curated these and changes were all manual. It was getting tedious to maintain. So I got this part up and going and then went on to get the events listings on to the site.

I didn't do much design work in the end, but used the bare minimum to get what I need for the listings.

The platform I'm using is 11ty (heck, yeah, back to static sites, so I've been excited up to this point on trying this out as I heard so much about it) and deployed on netlify. I played a little with TailwindCSS and wanted to use it in a project anyway, and really liked Nunjucks as it's pretty close to Jinja templates.

And yes, I'm not using Python, my go to language.

Here it is!


Diversity in Tech in Ireland

I've been maintaining a list of Diversity in Tech groups around the island of Ireland since 2017, and I think it's about the right time to get more of the community involved (and a chance for me to try a new framework out).

This means I can crowdsource any updates to the list of diversity in tech groups in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Folks can send in PRs, to do that, they will need to update the "diversityGroups.yaml" in src/_data. If you don't want to do that, you can create an issue or drop me an email at contact@codinggrace.com

Irish hosted events

Also on my TODO list is write something to pull Irish hosted events

  • where I can curate them
  • remove duplicates
  • remove non-techie events
  • and this one is more custom for me, output HTML code that I can paste into my Mailchimp for my…

Advocating for myself looks like…


Seriously, I really do get exhausted sometimes, but it something I need to do, to get word out so I can help more people. It's worth it, but when you are in the middle of it, which I am a lot, people don't realise the amount of work it takes to share with the community and as an introvert, it's pretty exhausting physically and mentally, but worth it.

If I can help myself, I can help others right now, and in turn more people.

And I do have a great partner, family and friends who look out for me. Interventions has happened in the past. πŸ˜…


Here's to all the folks who have been supporting causes that I've been so passionate about for years, even when I get pushbacks sometimes.

My biggest goal is…

... find creative ways to solve problems and help what I do benefit my community as best that I can do, and I know I can't engineer out of my problems all the time. πŸ˜‰

My advice for allies to support underrepresented folks who code is...

...listen to people asking for help.

At some stage in your life, you also started from zero, felt lost and overwhelmed. You built up courage to ask for help, and you realise there are super nice people who are happy to help and share their experiences.

Discussion (2)

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Ella Ang (she/her/elle)

This is such a detailed, encouraging post. It's inspiring to see how you're not only advocating for yourself but others, too. Thank you for sharing your vulnerabilities, your triumphs, and why nevertheless, whykay coded!

Long may you continue to fill your cup so it overflows!

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whykay πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ’»πŸˆπŸ³οΈβ€πŸŒˆ (she/her) Author

Thank you, I always try and stay grounded and remind myself how lost and lonesome it is starting something new or joining a new group. I'm very lucky that I have been around the Irish tech community for quite a long time, and the community helped and supported me along the way (with some bumps of course).

I'm happy to help and lend an ear from events, connecting people, questions about the Irish tech community... I may not have the answer, I will try and point them in the right direction. It's important that people of all ages who are joining/re-joining the field that we are all in this together even though we are still a far from achieving equity and diversity in the tech. I'm still learning all the time.

Again, thank you for your kind words. You made my day!πŸ₯°