Nomad Life: London
15 March 2017
15 March 2017
I am currently on a journey as a technology nomad in Europe. London was the first stop on my way, and I have gathered here some notes from living a month in the city.
London has a large tech scene. Many meetups take place at CodeNode, the Skills Matter venue buzzing with activity in the evenings during the week, as well as at various corporate offices. London Java Community even has a local chapter in Canary Wharf, the financial district in East London.
The most memorable tech events I attended were the monthly Hack the Tower day at Heron Tower, a Full Stack Quants session at CodeNode, and a Chronicle Users Group meeting hosted by Algomi. All three had a feeling of a community, which can be sometimes lacking in larger meetup groups.
In my experience, libraries often provide the best workplaces on the go. In London, City of London libraries and City of Westminster libraries provide free WiFi access, and the larger libraries have desks with power outlets for laptop workers. (As an alternative to libraries, it is worth checking out Campus as well.) During my stay, I spent multiple days working at the Barbican Library.
Public transport in London is generally very good with the tube supplemented by frequent bus and train services. Keep in mind, though, that the main transport arteries around the city get very busy at the rush hour. As I worked mostly remotely during the month, I was often able to avoid the rush hour traffic.
The most convenient way to use the public transport is to get an Oyster card and load a monthly travelcard on it. However, it is worth nothing that buses, unlike the tube and trains, do not operate in zones, and any travelcard entitles to any bus journey within London.
Those seeking a break from the bustle can climb up to Sky Garden or Tate Modern’s Switch House for serene views of the city skyline, and those who prefer to have both feet firmly on the ground can head to Hampstead Heath or Greenwich Park instead.
London is my favorite city, and a month in London is a short time. One day I will be back, but for now I have further adventures awaiting in Continental Europe.