Idea Foundry: Training by Collective Idea

Hands-on Training Takes a Holiday

Idea Foundry at SXSW

March 13, 2010

We’ve arrived at SXSW with 16,000 other web geeks and we’re having a blast telling people about our spring schedule. We have a couple new classes on MongoDB and iPhone Development that we’re very excited about!

We also have a booth at SXSW (#217) so come say hi if you’re nearby. We’ll be doing drawings for books each day and maybe you’ll get lucky and get a t-shirt too!

Be Nice, Win a copy of Learning jQuery

February 18, 2010

One of our instructors, Karl Swedberg got a mean email about his new book the jQuery 1.4 Reference Guide.

Just got mean email regarding jQuery 1.4 Reference Guide. ("Please, please, PLEASE don't write anymore books. ...") Makes me sad.

That’s not very nice. Karl is actually a fantastic writer.

So here’s the deal. Send Karl a nice tweet in the form of: "hey @ideafoundry send me @kswedberg’s book because …"

Do that, and we’ll pick a lucky tweet and send a free copy of his other book, Learning jQuery to the winner!


  1. Be nice.
  2. We’ll pick a winner at 5:00 PM Eastern, Friday, Feb 19, but you can continue being nice after that too.

Update: And the winner is…

Hey @ideafoundry send me @kswedberg’s book because I'm sure he is much more knowledgeable in jQuery than I am and I would love to learn!

Congrats, Nick! The book is on its way, and we hope you enjoy it!

Private Workshops

December 11, 2009

Did you know that all of our offerings are available as private workshops?

We’ve never called much attention to it (yet), but having two going at the same time in different states this week brought it to the forefront of our thinking.

It also forced us to rethink our post-class evaluation forms. We’ve used paper forms up until now, not because we couldn’t do an online form (we’re programmers, after all) but because we got better feedback from paper. People draw in the margins, or leave notes in places you wouldn’t expect, or circle between boxes to give a bit extra clarity to what they want to say. We like paper.

But will two classes in different states, we wanted to be a bit easier on our instructors, so we switched to an online form. Now we can have fun with the results. Here’s a summary from one of the classes this week:


We can get a good quick feel about how the class felt, and we give it to the instructors and clients.

Want to see all the pretty graphs we offer and get great training? Contact us today to schedule a private class!

Running the Numbers

July 03, 2009

Whew, we had a fantastic Spring at Idea Foundry. Here are the numbers:

We want to thank everyone who came; we had a great time hosting you in Holland.

If you haven’t already, check out the amazing photos specifically those by Dan Rubin and Paul Hart.

We’re now launching our Summer schedule and have jQuery, Ruby on Rails and ExpressionEngine ready for your reservations. Sign up today!

Meet Us and Smell the Tulips

May 01, 2009

Our entire spring schedule is in Holland, Michigan, and you can come there and meet us before it all begins.

May 2-9 we’ll be operating out of a storefront in downtown Holland, that we’re calling the Tech Embassy. There will be coworking, meetups, tech demos and a lot of fun. We have some of our friends coming from nearby and we hope to meet many more. Its all to celebrate the local festival, Tulip Time.

Come meet us and learn about our classes. They’ve been taught all over the world and are in Holland this May and June.

Sidebar Workshop + jQuery = 4 Amazing Days

April 09, 2009

We’re partnering with our friends at Sidebar Creative to make the week of our jQuery class even better!

Come a day early (May 12) and you can learn front-end development from design to implementation with 4 amazing instructors: Dan Rubin, Steve Smith, Jonathan Snook & Bryan Veloso. They’re bringing their Sidebar Workshop to Holland for this full day of learning and excitement.

You can sign up for just the Sidebar Workshop for the low price of $395, or bundle it with our jQuery class and save. That’s 1 day of amazing front-end learning plus 3 days of incredible jQuery expertise for the low price of $1295!

Spring into jQuery, Advanced Rails and more

March 27, 2009

Spring is here, and we’re celebrating by announcing a ton of exciting classes!


We’re very excited to have Karl Swedberg, author of the book Learning jQuery, teach a 3-day course to get you up and running with all the best jQuery tips and tricks. Karl’s an energetic teacher who knows jQuery better than almost anyone (he’s consistently one of the top posters on the jQuery mailing list). Sign up today to reserve your spot!

Advanced Ruby on Rails

We get lots of requests to do an Advanced Rails class, so we’re bringing it to Holland. Come learn a survey of advanced topics that will take your Rails coding to the next level. If you’re using Rails but know there’s much more to learn, this is the class for you.

ExpressionEngine and Ruby on Rails

No, they’re not writing EE 2.0 in Rails (but it’d be a fun rumor to start), we’re bringing back our two popular classes for the spring. ExpressionEngine will be back in May and Ruby on Rails will be kicking off in June.

Idea Foundry

Finally, if you’re viewing this in a feed reader, you may not have noticed that we’re sporting a new name and a design refresh. We were so excited about our spring schedule, we needed to start it off in style.

We always want to know what you think, especially about our new name and site. Drop us a line at or on Twitter.

Refer a friend, earn $100!

January 14, 2009


We’ll send you $100 when you tell a friend about our training.

If someone attends one of our classes*, and they tell us that you referred them, then we’ll send you $100 on the day the class starts. The only requirement is that they tell us your name and email when they sign up.

This might be the simplest Affiliate/Referral program ever. Have your friends sign up today! There’s still time to sign up for our San Antonio Rails and ExpressionEngine classes which are next week!

Go tell your friends!

* Offer does not apply to Sidebar Workshop, but come to the jQuery class too, and it will!

Advanced Rails in Washington, D.C.

December 19, 2008

  • a meeting room at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria
  • a room at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria
  • the lobby at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria
  • the pool at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria
  • the lobby at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria
  • a room at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria

We’re coming to the D.C. area, Old Town Alexandria to be specific, in March.

Come learn Advanced Rails topics March 23-26. The class is a survey of advanced topics, so you don’t have to be a master to attend. If you are loving Rails but want to learn more, or take your apps to the next level, then this is the class for you.

We’ll be minutes away from D.C. the week before the Cherry Blossom Festival, at the beautuful Hotel Monaco Alexandria. We’re looking forward to having a good group, and a great time. Sign up today!

New Cities and Dates: San Antonio, Texas & Washington, D.C.

November 12, 2008

It’s cold in Holland, so we’re taking our classes on the road!

San Antonio, Texas

Our first stop is January 20–23 in San Antonio, a city steeped in history and full of life. Spend your days learning either Ruby on Rails or ExpressionEngine and spend your evenings touring the Alamo, or enjoying the nightlife of the River Walk.

The ExpressionEngine class will be held at the Inn On The Riverwalk, a gorgeous Bed & Breakfast right on the River Walk. Instructor Mike Boyink will follow the mold of our previous EE class of combining insightful, one-on-one training and valuable networking opportunities with other web professionals.

The Ruby on Rails class will be at the incredible Emily Morgan Hotel, 14 steps away from the Alamo and a couple blocks off the River. Daniel & Brandon are ready to get you up in running with Rails with their class that’s been praised around the world.

Because we’re hosting both sessions at the same time, we can double the networking opportunities, or if you’re not into networking, double the cool people to have a beer with. As usual, we’ll have optional (everyone always loves them) activities in the evenings to get to know the other people in the class and meet some locals in the industry.

On to Washington, D.C.

Our next stop is going to be the Washington D.C. area. We’re finalizing the details, so look for an announcement very soon!

What about Holland?

Don’t worry, we’ll be back in Holland with dates in May that we’ll announce early in 2009. Past attendees has praised the Holland experience and we know you’ll have fun too.

The word is out: We're in the News

September 01, 2008

The word is out: People are loving Training.

We’re pleased to be featured in this week’s Grand Rapids Business Journal and highlighted on local news!

We want to thank the Ruby on Rails Class we had here last week. It was another fantastic group that we were proud to get to know. After hours, we had fun sailing, golfing, and laughing.

Our favorite response is this response to our question: Would you recommend this course to a friend?

I think my coworkers would get a lot out of it but then the secret would be out that I had fun AND learned.

We’ll have more Training to announce very soon, so stay tuned!

Advanced Rails Survey: win a free spot

August 13, 2008

We’ve had a great time with the Rails Training and the reactions have been amazing.

We’ve had a lot of inquiries about putting on an Advanced Ruby on Rails training. We are working on putting it together and are excited about it, but we want to know what you think. Would you mind helping us out and answering a few questions?

We’re giving away one free spot to either the Rails Training on August 25 or the Advanced Rails training for completing the survey. We’ll be drawing the winner on Monday, August 18 (Update: we’re extending it until August 19), so check out the survey now.

ExpressionEngine & Ruby on Rails

July 16, 2008

The most exciting training anywhere just got better. We’re pleased to announce that ExpressionEngine is joining our Ruby on Rails Training in beautiful Holland, Michigan.

That’s right, not only can you learn Ruby on Rails August 25–28, you can learn ExpressionEngine September 9–12. We’re proud to team up with Mike Boyink of Train-ee to lead the first ExpressionEngine course anywhere in the world.

Train-ee is the premier site for ExpressionEngine learning, and Mike is deeply involved in the EE community. He’s excited to bring his print materials alive in our 4-day Training.

We’re equally excited to bring back our Ruby on Rails Training. Our June Training was fun for student and instructor alike. We have plans to make this one even better. We had people from New York, California and all over the Midwest join us for our first Holland Training. Come see the excitement for yourself!

Check out out both Training (EE, Rails) and sign up soon. Early-bird prices fly away in August.

Next Training: Ruby on Rails

June 27, 2008

Take a vacation from normal training courses. Come to beautiful Holland, Michigan to learn Ruby on Rails with an experienced team of instructors. You’ll spend four days learning Rails in the heart of Downtown Holland, home of great food and shopping, and minutes away from stunning Lake Michigan.

Don’t let your boss think that the fun will detract from your learning. You’ll gain hands-on experience with Rails with ample one-on-one learning opportunities. So whether you’re coming from another language, or you’re brand new to coding, you’ll walk away with practical experience and with confidence in your ability to use Rails effectively.

Early-bird pricing is only $1,195. Register today, as the price goes up to $1,495 after August 1.