The format of a BarCamp is not easy to understand at first sight. For some it is confusing at first:

I get to decide what gets done?!


A BarCamp begins with all participants coming together and introducing themselves briefly. After the organizers have provided as little information as possible, the participants usually get down to business – session planning. Usually this means that not every BarCamp is the same, but it works something like this.

Sooner or later, however, it comes to session planning and that means that all participants of the BarCamp plan the content of the first day of the BarCamp together. There is already a structure for this. The basic structure of a daily schedule (start of the day, breaks and end of the day) is fixed. You can find this basic structure here:
This is where the session time windows or also called session slots are located. What happens there is up to you.

But how and what is a session anyway?

The word session or session has several meanings. Musicians* improvise together in a rehearsal session. Scientists discuss research results in an oral session.
A BarCamp session lies somewhere in between. In JPC, a session is a time window that a person fills with a topic. This person can then give a lecture on this topic because he or she is particularly familiar with it. He or she can also have other people in the session teach him or her about the topic because they want to learn more about it. This person can also try something completely new together with the others, which nobody really knows about. There are a few rules for creating such a session, which you can find here:

If you already have an idea what you want to do in such a session, you only need to come to the session planning, stand in the queue of the session givers, introduce your topic, say if you know a lot or little, if you want to tell something or rather listen more and if you need something to implement your session. This refers mainly to technical aids, such as a beamer. But it is also possible that the people who are supposed to come into your session need to have special knowledge, e.g. programming language, etc. It is important that you explain to the others in as few words as possible what should happen in your session. Then the person who moderates the session planning will ask the others who is interested in your session and choose a session room for you according to the number of messages. These rooms are located in the building where the BarCamp takes place.

But, wait a minute! We are not allowed to meet personally this year!
That’s right, we can’t. At the JPC there will be no building and no queue of session givers, because we will meet exclusively on the internet. This means that we will meet in video conferences and chats and you can write your session idea in advance here:
People who find your session idea interesting will contact you there. But you can also contribute ideas to the session planning in the morning, no problem!
Attention: It is possible that nobody is interested in what you find interesting. This is okay and has nothing to do with you. Our tip: Just offer your session again the next day, or think about another topic.
A basic rule at a BarCamp is: There are no spectators, only participants. And because these participants not only take but also give, they are called participants. So, at a BarCamp there are only participants.
Use that for yourself, offer a session and don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself. BarCamps are there to try things out for the first time. Everybody knows that and nobody will make fun of you. If they do, you will definitely get help and support. From other contributors and the organizing team.