Whyday ∞.0

Tomorrow is August 19. Time for another Whyday!

Really, though, August 19 isn’t that special. It made a perfect occasion for the first celebration of what _why brought to us, and a great time for us all to say how much we missed him.

On the next day, though, I wrote “every day is Whyday.” And that’s been closer to the truth than I ever would have expected. I’m hesitant to mention specifics that have happened since then, because I’ll inevitably forget more than I remember. But here’s a sampling:

  • Dr Nic has been as funny as ever, and wore a fairy costume on stage at a major conference.
  • Jam sessions and other musical events are a normal, expected part of big Ruby conferences.
  • Steve Klabnik has revived Shoes and Hackety Hack.
  • Rubinius has become a fertile laboratory for experimenting with language ideas, including Poison, a revival of _why’s Potion language by Brian Ford.
  • Last, but certainly not least, Aaron Patterson has continued to inject humor and silliness—mixed with great, solid work—into our community.

I don’t think Whyday started or inspired any of those things, but perhaps it helped to emphasize their importance. (Feel free to chime in with a comment about things I left off this list.)

My original idea for Whyday was for it to be a one-time thing, not an annual event. The point isn’t that we want _why to come back (although we certainly miss him). It’s less about him than it is about recognizing that we still need what he gave to us. It’s pretty clear, though, from my mailbox and Twitter feeds, that a lot of people want it to be an annual event. And that’s fantastic!

So please, go wild tomorrow. Tweet your activities using #whyday as a hashtag.

And then do the same thing next week, or whenever you can make time for being playful. That’s what Why did, and that’s what we should do.

Every day is Whyday!

Yesterday, my friend Chad Fowler wrote:

Happy #whyday people! Maybe not teaching children, but teaching adults today at @pragmaticstudio. #whyday project next week.

And here’s a similar tweet from Bob Martens:

Happy #whyday people! I’m going to have to postpone my work while we move, but I want to put out some Ruby stuff soon!

This morning there have been others in the same vein.

The purpose of Whyday—at least, my purpose for Whyday—was not merely to remember _why the person. It was to fan the flames of the why-ish spirit in the Ruby community (and in the larger programming community as well) so that we don’t forget the kind of creativity, playfulness, and joy that _why brought to us.

If we put that spirit away because it’s not August 19th anymore, that would really miss the point.

If you started something yesterday, but didn’t get as far on it as you’d hoped … keep hacking on it!

If you’ve got the start of something but don’t have much time to proceed … throw it open and see if anyone else would like to help!

And if, for some reason, you couldn’t set aside time yesterday to celebrate … there’s always today, tomorrow, next week, and next month!

I started my own Whyday project, but I didn’t get as much done as I’d hoped, because I was having too much fun spreading the word about what others were doing. But I’m going to continue working on it. Yesterday was just the start!

Quick Whyday wrapup

A lot happened yesterday! It’s going to take me a while to go through and list all of the interesting things that people did for Whyday, and unfortunately I have to pull my best practices out of storage today and get some other things done (and also celebrate a wedding anniversary). For now, if you’d like to check out some of the activity, here are two recommendations:

  • The fine folks at Ruby5 covered several Whyday projects in today’s podcast. Thanks, David and Kim!
  • I tried to follow the #whyday hashtag all day yesterday and retweet the activity. Here’s a twitter search that shows all of those retweets.

Thanks to everyone who made Whyday such a success!

Hackety Hack v1.0-pre released, too!

And hot on the heels of Shoes 3, Hackety Hack v1.0-pre has been released: http://hackety-hack.com/posts/happy_whyday

Shoes 3 (Policeman 0.r1514) released!

The Shoes team has announced the Whyday release of Shoes 3.

Learn more at http://shoes.heroku.com, or download at http://shoes.heroku.com/downloads.

#whyday on freenode

I forgot to mention last night: Whyday revelers can congregate in the #whyday IRC channel.

Happy Whyday!

It’s great to see the tributes to _why on Twitter, and some people are already posting projects! I’ll loop back around tomorrow to try to list them all here, but for now I’ve got my own Whyday project to work on!

If you have a Whyday project you’d like to highlight, or invite people to help with, post with the #whyday hashtag on Twitter, or comment on this post.