In Basing View something incredible is happening, change is afoot. A vibrant Tech Hub is developing based around the amazing co-working space at Desk Lodge. More and more start-ups are coming into the space as SETsquared expands its presence there and with that, an embryonic tech community is emerging. The seeds that were sown last year are starting to bear fruit and the community is going from strength to strength. But, every community needs people to help, support and get involved if it is to grow and prosper and so the word needs to be spread. More people need to get involved to build and strengthen this community so, how can this be done?

Well, one way is through networking events. The first to start are the Google Developers Group and a 5G event called Talk5G. These events provide an opportunity to meet with like-minded people, share some food and beer or two and learn from expert speakers. The first Google Developers Group in June was such an event.

At the event experts from Razorsecure and Apps in the Sky delivered the first instalment of a programme that runs over the next five Meetups covering how to build a complete front-end and back-end system. Lewis Oaten, CTO at Razorsecure covered how to use containerisation while Tom Colvin, Founder at Apps in the Sky talked about the benefits of Google’s Firebase.

Taking the first step on the journey to building an amazing backend infrastructure, Lewis started with the hosting environment Kubernetes. Kubernetes, created by Google, and now maintained by the open source community is the de facto container orchestrator and hosting environment used by some of the world’s leading companies. Out of the box, it helps you build a scalable, self-healing and versatile hosting environment for your applications with the tools you need to perform rolling updates, load balancing and horizontal scaling.

Lewis demonstrated how to get started with your own Kubernetes cluster. Using Minikube as the virtualised out-of-the-box Kubernetes test environment, Skaffold for rapid development and deployments, and Helm for package management, Lewis was able to demonstrate some of the key functions and all the code he used is available at: https://github.com/lewisoaten/gdg1-kubernetes

Tom focused on an introduction to Firebase, which is Google’s mobile app back end. It allows developers to integrate common services such as authentication, push messaging and a synchronising database into their apps, without the need to write any custom server code. Developers can integrate these services by writing only front-end code, which ultimately makes app development faster – and therefore cheaper. It also frees developers from many of the common concerns around back-end security and scalability.

Firebase is an umbrella for many services, some of which Tom briefly introduced, such as analytics, machine learning, hosting, cloud storage and crash reporting. He then presented a more in-depth look at authentication and Cloud Firestore, Firebase’s new real-time database. For authentication, he showed how an app developer could easily implement logins in their app using Google, Facebook, Twitter and other providers. For Cloud Firestore, he showed how an app could store data, synchronise it across many devices and make complex multivariate queries.

It was a really great start to the events programme, which will be followed in July by Talk5G that will take a look at the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution”. These events are truly not to be missed and are a great opportunity to engage and help build a tech community in Basingstoke so, come on! All the events are listed on Meetup and Tech Juice so what do you have to lose? Sign up now and be part of the exciting tech future in Basingstoke.