Codefest 2016

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OpenBio Codefest 2016 will tentatively take place July 6th and 7th, 2016 (the Wednesday and Thursday before BOSC 2016) in Orlando, Florida. We are currently working on securing a venue and will update with more details as that gets finalized.

This is an opportunity for anyone interested in open science, biology and programming to meet, discuss and work collaboratively. Everyone is welcome to attend.

This is the seventh annual pre-BOSC Codefest. Previous fun and successful events were Codefest 2010 in Boston, Codefest 2011 in Vienna, Codefest 2012 in Los Angeles, Codefest 2013 in Berlin, and Codefest 2014 in Boston and Codefest 2015 in Dublin.


The goal of Codefest is to bring open source bioinformatics programmers together to have an enjoyable and productive two days. Practically this results in a number of useful outcomes:

  • Improving and expanding existing open source code, documentation and infrastructure (see the summaries from Codefest 2015, Codefest 2014 and Codefest 2013 for examples of work accomplished in previous years).
  • Developing new communities working on shared problems. For example, the Common Workflow Language developed from discussions at Codefest 2014.
  • Establishing new relationships for training, helping to expand the open source bioinformatics community.

Why attend

  • For new members of the community: meet and learn with existing open source programmers. First timers are welcome at Codefest.
  • For current community members: expand your network and strengthen existing relationships. Teach and learn from new community members. Focus on open source work without interruptions. Discuss questions and problems in real time.
  • For everyone: discuss and learn from the community. Teach others what you know. Build new friendships and collaborations.

What to expect

The OpenBio Codefest is a collaborative two day working session. The only requirement for attendance is that you have an interest in open source software and solving scientific problems. We will have contributors to open source bioinformatics tools present to collaboratively work with, and we welcome new attendees who want to learn and contribute to open source code or documentation.

The rough structure of the two days is:

  • Start with introductions from everyone attending about their goals and plans for the two days.
  • Assemble into working groups based on shared interests like programming languages, open source projects or biological questions. We use the collaboratively brainstormed Google document as the basis for setting up groups. Attendees determine the goals for the two days. If you have an idea for a project, please add it before the event. Any and all suggestions are welcome.
  • Work and discuss. Enjoy the productive time.
  • We'll have regular breaks where each group can deliver short reports on their progress.
  • We have informal lunches, dinners and drinks as a way for everyone to get to know each other better.
  • At the end of the two days, we summarize contributions and work accomplished in a BOSC presentation and meeting report.

Please feel free to get in touch with any of the organizers with questions. You are very welcome at Codefest.


You are very welcome to attend. There is no cost, we only ask you to register to help organize numbers. Please add yourself if you are interested to this Google spreadsheet We'll coordinate through the Codefest 2016 mailing list, so please sign up to discuss and receive updates.

If you're not able to physically attend, we're still more than happy to have you participate in Codefest. Please sign up on the the Google spreadsheet and list yourself as remote only. We set up a Gitter chat room we can use to coordinate and discuss in real time and also hope to setup additional remote options to make it easier to be part of Codefest.


We're currently confirming a venue and will add more details.


We're always looking for sponsors interested in being involved with the open source community for help with food and coffee. If interested, please get in touch with Brad.