Watching live streams of people playing video games has proved to be one of the unexpected hits of the internet age, with more than 100 million people tuning into it every month through the platform Twitch. Now, two entrepreneurs are attempting to capitalise on this trend with a site dedicated to the live-streaming of an even more improbable spectator sport: coding.
The original concept co-founders Jamie Green and Michael Garbade had for Livecoding.tv was as an educational tool, though it has since proved popular as a platform for users to compete against other coders, as well as watch fellow programmers comb through lines of code. Having launched just over six months ago, Livecoding.tv is already churning out 700 hours of video a day from a userbase of more than 60,000 registered members.
"It is an online peer-to-peer platform to help people learn how to code," said Green. "If you want to stream on Livecoding.tv, it's a great way to share your code, grow your skills and build your reputation. You can even earn some side income.
"As a viewer, you can interact with experienced developers, see how they solve real problems and build real products. On Livecoding.tv you'll see much cleverer developers building much more interesting things than I could ever possibly build."
The company has already raised funding from European Union seed grant initiative European Pioneers and current plans to monetise the business involve paid-for classes on advanced topics and other issues that people learning to code might have.
Livecoding.tv's recent surge in popularity also earned Green and Garbade a place on Y Combinator's start-up accelerator programme, where they hope to attract the interest of investors on Thursday (20 August).