Indoor Waterpark + Roku Streams = CodeMash 2014

For those of you who dig tech conferences held in the middle of winter at indoor waterparks, CodeMash sessions are up, and I’m doing something different this year. I’m teaching a half-day class on Roku development, on January 8, 2014.

Details are on the sessions page — you can’t link to a specific session, but if you filter by “precompiler” classes and type equals other, you’ll find it. Of course, this is three months away, so I don’t have the class materials prepared yet, but my plan is to get a quick win by streaming something simple like the Apple “BipBop” test stream, and then move on to building out a more sophisticated content browser with the various UI widgets.

Actually, we’ll probably dedicate the first hour just to getting set up. Everyone needs to get their Rokus onto the Kalahari wifi, put them into developer mode, get the IP address, and get set up to send zips to it with FTP and watch the debug messages with telnet. Also, everyone’s going to need to see the output from their Roku, either with a second monitor or (preferably) a capture box into their laptop. Lots to wrangle, and makes me appreciate the relative convenience of Xcode and its iOS simulator.

EDIT: Jeff Kelley reminds me I should score some Amazon affil linkage out of this. So if you want a top-of-the-line HD-only, HDMI-only box, check out the 3rd generation Roku 3, whereas I’ll be rocking the 2nd gen SD/HD Roku 2 XS.

Also, as I discovered the hard way at CocoaConf San Jose, a Roku on someone else’s wifi is worthless without the original remote control: there’s no way to connect it to the wifi, which in turn means you can’t find it with the Roku smartphone app. So, yeah, I was very careful to put that in the requirements/prerequisites for the class.

Anyways, that’ll be fun, and very much in CodeMash’s spirit of trying out new things. CodeMash registration is next Tuesday (Oct. 22) for alumni, and the following Tuesday (Oct. 29) for general public. Last year, each sold out in a WWDC-like 30 seconds; in fact, it was the CodeMash 2013 experience that convinced me that WWDC 2013 would sell out in less than a minute.

So, if you make it in, and want to learn Roku programming, I’ll see you in January!

Comment (1)

  1. Oh, and this is the first time in five years I’m not doing anything iOS-related at CodeMash. Maybe at open spaces, but I usually use my slot there to do an anime birds-of-a-feather and just stream stuff off Crunchyroll for an hour.

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