Running My First Ever Technical Workshop – The Night Before


Overview of the Workshop

This post might not contain any particularly useful content. It’s midnight in Prague, tomorrow I am running my first ever technical workshop. I want to write a post about the workshop, particularly outlying the things that are concerning me. If I don’t write this post tonight, it will be too late.

The workshop is a half-day (4 hour) workshop on Gatling, the Scala based stress testing tool. I have only been using Gatling for around 3 months or so. But I have learnt a lot about the tool in that time. So I think I have a lot of useful knowledge I can impart. Especially to new users in getting setup, deployed, and running stress tests.

I created the workshop in a little over a week. But I have put a significant amount of time into it in that week. The workshop is split into two parts. The first will cover an introduction to Gatling, basic setup, using the recorder and running your first test. The second part will dive into more advanced concepts, writing actual code based on exercises I have set.

I have structured the workshop so that attendees can attend the first part only, or both part 1 and 2.

These are the artifacts I have created for this workshop:

  • PowerPoint slide-deck with 30+ slides
  • Github project with coding exercises and answers
  • Dedicated Slack channel to discuss before, during and after the workshop

For the sites to script against, I will be using and the Gatling Practice test site. I concerned using an internal system, but I think it’s too complex for an introductory workshop. I need something simpler with less noise, to teach the concepts of the tool.

This is the room that I will give the workshop in tomorrow. It’s located in the fantastic new SAP offices in Prague.


My Concerns

  • Workshop was originally only going to be for 5 people. There are now over 30 invited. This might be too many.
  • I have been asked to give the workshop over Zoom at the same time. I’m concerned about not being able to pay enough attention to those in the room.
  • I am worried that the content might be too basic. I think this is more because I am so familiar with it now though, it seems easy to me. I will set the scene at the start, to specifically say this is aimed at those with little or no experience of Gatling.
  • Other general technical concerns. The projector might fail. Internal Github might be down (it went down today!). People might not be able to get the project setup because of some weird configuration issue on their machine. I can’t really do anything about any of this, I just need to roll with it, and trust in my ability to handle it.

Overall though, I am really excited at the prospect of doing this tomorrow. This is something I couldn’t of imagined doing a couple of years ago. I have come quite a long way in my personal development recently, this is just another step in that journey.

I’ll be sure to do a (more detailed) write up of how the workshop goes. I will also consider releasing a version to the public in the New Year. Thanks for reading, and wish me luck for tomorrow!

  • Alaine Miller

    Inspiring! Thanks for posting.

    • James Willett

      Thanks Alaine! It went well, will post a full write-up soon 🙂