Posts Tagged ‘Omniversity 2013’

Autumn Courses at MadLab

Friday, August 23rd, 2013

Fancy learning WordPress, how to write a short story, the first step you need to create a robot army or the best way to stuff a bird?

We've got a brilliant line up this Autumn:

WordPress co-founder Mike Little will be leading two-day beginners', intermediate and advanced courses.

Dr Sam Bail will be teaching coding newbies how to get to grips with Python.

Laura H Drane is back leading not one, but two Bid Writing sessions.

Award-winning short story publisher Comma Press will be hosting a six-part writing course, led by Anneliese Mackintosh.

We'll be stuffing birds with Shannon Harmon in a two day taxidermy course.

Want to build a robot army? Then your first port of call should be to sign-up to the Arduino & Physical Computing course led by MadLab's Dave Mee.

Kimchi & Chip's Elliot Woods will be back at MadLab to run two VVVV courses.

For more info, and to sign up – visit


New Bid writing course at the Omniversity!

Monday, April 15th, 2013

bid-writing-MLMay  2013 will see an all new bid writing course at the Omniversity. Led by Laura H Drane, this one day session has been created with the small-to-medium enterprise in mind and aims to help you make the best application possible.

Whether it be for hundreds or hundreds of thousands, this course can be tailored for your specific needs. At the end of the session you will come away with an in depth understanding of the application process, a more secure knowledge of what funding is available to you and much needed experience in answering questions that will usually come up. The  most important thing is that you will gain a great deal more confidence in approaching the dreaded bid application!

For more information or to book a course, you can visit the course site here or contact the leader herself via twitter @laurahd

About the course leader

Laura has secured funds from hundreds to hundreds of thousands of pounds for a wide range of organisations, and provided training in bid-writing to the RSA, Clore Leadership Programme, and British Science. The course she will deliver is based on this programme, and will be the first time these materials and exercises will be available to the public and smaller organisations.

Beginners’ Guide to Arduino and Physical Computing

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

arduinologoTitle: Beginners’ Guide to Arduino and Physical Computing
Location: MadLab
Description: This course tells you everything you need to know about working with the Arduino platform, from software development and simple circuit building, to prototyping new controllers and building robotics.

Date: 06-07-2013
Start Time: 10:00
End Time: 17:30

Booking: sign up here

Arduino devices open up the exciting new world of physical computing, making real-world applications available even for non-experts to explore. The possible uses of these micro-controllers are limitless – all you need to add is your imagination.

This course tells you everything you need to know about working with the Arduino platform, from software development and simple circuit building, to prototyping new controllers and building robotics.

You’ll learn not only what you can achieve with Arduino boards, but also strategies for integrating them into larger projects, from installations to sensor networks.

And how could you use it? For functionality, for art… for making life more interesting.

Imagine a clock, with hands not telling the time, but where members of your family are by automatically sending back information about their movements. Imagine a bakery that can instantly send a tweet to its followers to tell them when their yummy baked goods are fresh out of the oven. Imagine a beautiful water-based display that spells out letters and numbers with bubbles.

Now imagine what YOU could do with it!

Real World Examples

Here are some of our favourite projects using the Arduino:

What you need to be familiar with

You’ll need to know how to use your computer, edit files, and save them.

Some programming background is useful, but not essential; if you’ve ever written Javascript, Pascal, C, C++, Java or Actionscript, you’ll find the Arduino programming language very familiar. If you’ve written Macros in Excel or any desktop software, you’ll find this will help you understand what’s happening.

Software and costs

The fee of the course is £120. Included in this price is a hot buffet lunch, with vegetarian options (please notify us if you have other dietary requirements).

You will also receive an Arduino Uno, breadboard, holder, USB cable and parts bundle. Each parts bundle contains jumper wires, two pushbuttons, two potentiometers, resistors, 10 LEDs, and a photoresistor.

Additionally, you will receive an electronic copy of the teaching materials, software, and programmes we write on a USB stick.

All software is freely available and copies will be distributed with the course materials on the day.

We will be using the Arduino IDE, version 0021,  which can be downloaded from for all platforms.

We will also be using the Processing IDE, version 1.2.1, which can be downloaded from for all platforms.

Equipment you’ll need

You will need to bring a computer, ideally a laptop, with a recent version of  Linux, Windows or OSX installed. You will need a USB interface on this computer.

Suggested preparatory work

  • Install the Arduino IDE
  • Install the Processing IDE

Make sure both applications start and run properly on your computer – on some Linux distributions, you need to install extra software.

Familiarise yourself with the introduction to the Processing IDE (the Arduino IDE is based on it) at

Learning Outcomes

  • How to connect and configure Arduino Uno devices to a computer, and download programmes to it
  • How to use a breadboard to prototype circuits, and interact with components through software
  • What different kinds of components exist and how to use photoresistor, potentiometers, and LEDs
  • How to communicate with an Arduino using USB and Processing
  • How to expand your Arduino and where to find devices and support


WordPress for Journalists

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

WordPress for Journalists

Title: WordPress for Journalists
Location: MadLab
Description: Omniversity course covering WordPress for journalists
Start Date: 11-04-2013
End Date: 12-04-2013
Start Time: 10:00
End Time: 16:30
Booking: Sign up here

A hands-on introduction to building a website or blog with WordPress

WordPress co-founder Mike Little will be leading our two-day course.

WordPress is the publishing platform of choice for nearly 60 million websites and blogs run by individuals, multinational firms and government bodies. Media organisations from the New York Times and Reuters, to The Telegraph and The Independent, love it.

It may be quick and easy to install, but it takes a bit of knowledge to get the best out of WordPress. This course is designed to start you off with the skills you will need to power and develop your own WordPress site to exhibit your work, be that as a print journalist, blogger, broadcaster or film maker. And who better to teach you than WordPress co-founder Mike Little?

Freelancers in particular need an online presence to showcase their work, not only to potential employers but also to the public at large.

By the end of the course you will have mastered the basics of WordPress and be in the position to start managing your own site.

Who will benefit from this class?

This class is ideal for the freelance journalist wanting to showcase their writing, the budding radio presenter wanting to learn to podcast, the photojournalist looking to put a portfolio online, or a multimedia reporter wanting to showcase their presentation style.

Anyone looking to work for the many media companies using WordPress will benefit from having these skills.

You may have already tried to set up WordPress but got lost in the technical details. This course will set you back on the right track.

Please note: This course does not cover and concentrates on self-hosted WordPress instead.

What you need to be familiar with

If you want to work on an existing WordPress site you are more than welcome, but we will provide a pre-installed site for up to a month for all attendees.

This course is aimed at those who’ve already got to grips with the WordPress CMS. You’ll don’t need any programming experience, but a little CSS knowledge is useful.

Who uses WordPress?





More examples of WordPress powered sites

Course syllabus

  1. Introduction To WordPress: What is WordPress? A little history (blogging and more, how WordPress is used in the news/media)
  2. The WordPress dashboard: Logging in and looking around
  3. Settings: Configuring WordPress just how you want it
  4. All about content: Blog posts, pages and more
  5. Publishing your first content: It’s easy! Video, audio, photos too
  6. Syndication: RSS – Feeds in, feeds out
  7. Themes, and the look of your site: Some good themes and sources of more
  8. Plugins: Adding more functionality, some key plugins, SEO, security and more
  9. Comments and social media: Engaging with your readers, linking with the social media world
  10. Multiple users: Co-authoring and workflow, copyright and attribution

Equipment you’ll need

  • Please bring a laptop computer with Windows, Linux or Mac OS installed. You will not need to install any software, but you should have a modern web browser. Our preference is for the latest version of Firefox or Google Chrome, but the latest Internet Explorer or Opera will be fine too.
  • You may want to bring some sample images, or short MP3s that you will be able to upload to your website during the course.
  • If you feel more comfortable using an external mouse, please bring one with you

Learning outcomes

After completing the class, you will:

  • Have a thorough grounding in using and administering WordPress
  • Know how to use all the features of the WordPress editor
  • Have an understanding of podcasting, video blogging, and more
  • Know how to incorporate social media and SEO
  • Have a set of valuable skills appropriate for WordPress’s increasing use by world-class media organisations

Costs and times

The course costs £200. You will receive an electronic copy of the teaching materials, software, and programmes. You will also receive one month’s free hosting courtesy of MadLab to test and refine your site. Lunch and refreshments are provided.