30 October 2023

Barcelona’s 2nd Mini-Meet: Bridging the gap between balena and the community

The second balena mini-meet recently took center stage in the city of Barcelona. The event served as a platform not only for meeting in person and to work but also for sharing knowledge, trends and brainstorming about the latest developments at balena. Here’s a recap of our recent Barcelona mini-meet and a sneak peek into what comes next.
balena mini-meet in the beach of Barcelona

The Inspiration Behind the Second Mini-Meet

The inception of the second mini-meet was immediately planned after reading the title of Run your own event on our colleague Chris’ blogpost after the successful inaugural mini-meet. As a remote-first company I occasionally long to be in a shared physical space, laughing, brainstorming and genuinely enjoying other team member’s company. It was truly a sight to behold! Chris had already prepared the way with the inaugural UK Mini-Meet, showcasing the potential of these events to foster connections.
After a few messages with other balenistas, the Barcelona mini-meet was conceived. With the blueprint laid out by the first mini-meet, I was keen on furthering this tradition, a bridge between our remote work and human interaction.

The Barcelona mini Meet

On a sunny Sunday we met in the Catalan city, the 2nd mini-meet saw the participation of teammates Edwin, Pranas, Rafa, Thomas and Marc. Each one brought their unique balena perspective and expertise, enhancing the quality of discussions, brainstorming sessions and views of the IoT landscape.
Not limited to just formal talks and discussions, the event also celebrated the rich gastronomic culture of Barcelona. The attendees enjoyed the local cuisine with tapas, paella and other Catalan dishes. We walked some of the most famous Gaudí buildings in Barcelona, such as the Sagrada Família, the Casa Batlló and La Pedrera. On Monday we also visited the FabLab Barcelona, to get inspired by the great community leading this organization in Barcelona.
Visiting Sagrada Família in Barcelona

Meeting the balena community

But what truly set this mini-meet apart was the connection with the local IoT community and meeting balena community members. Xose Perez from RAK Wireless, a balena ambassador, graced the Tuesday morning with his insights, brainstorming ideas and discussions.
Balena team with Xose Perez from RAK Wireless
On Tuesday Kudzai Manditereza from hiveMQ and Violet Su from Seeed Studio joined the Mini-Meet. With Kudzai we discussed the next steps of the HiveMQ and balena partnership and started to organize the MQTT Summit CONNACK! Munich 2023 where I am going to speak along with other HiveMQ members.
Building on this momentum, Marc organized an IoT Barcelona meetup along with the TTN Catalonia community. The title "Learn the latest trends about Industrial IoT '' set the tone for a night of learning and exchange with experts from HiveMQ, Industrial Shields PLC, Seeed Studio, RAK Wireless, Ignion and more. The meetup was impressive, with more than 40 enthusiasts from various IoT domains.

When is the next balena Mini-Meet?

Who knows? Mini-meets are meant to include impromptu pop-up events which anyone on the team can initiate and organize. The next big balena meet will be the annual summit, organized by our team and fully funded by balena. Expect more information about the balena summit where everyone in the company will meet in a sunny location to work together on topics that are well-suited for in-person meetings.
The Barcelona mini-meet successfully met our goal of connecting with the local IoT community to hear about the items that are important to them. We received great feedback from the IoT Barcelona Meetup folks that will help us further our mission of reducing friction in the IoT space. As the IoT landscape continues to evolve, events like these will play a pivotal role in shaping its future, one meetup at a time.
We can’t wait to see where and when the next balena Mini-Meet will take place!
by Marc PousDeveloper Advocate