"If you build it, they will come" - Or how to start a community

I’ve always found that the best practices inside my field were not always respected. Doctors always wash their hands, architect follow all the rules to have a building that is safe for the people living/working inside it. However, with software, anyone can improvise himself “Software Architect” or “Software Developer” without having any problem to find a job. Most people in the .NET community will follow what is given to them by Microsoft. Be it SharePoint, Entity Framework, Linq To SQL, Visual Studio, or whatever. Sometimes, alternative is good because they offer you a different view on the state of things.

When I met Greg Young for the first time, it was in .NET Montreal Community meeting where he was doing a presentation on DDD. We took a beer together and talked about improving the level of those in Montreal. Improving the level of average developer in Montreal is a hell of a task. First, there is people like me, Greg and Eric De Carufel who are passionate with their craft and are not satisfied with the status quo. We believe in ALT.NET but are most of the time called “passionate programmer”. The people like me and Eric are the easy one to help. Then there is those that want to improve themselves but that doesn’t have time (life, family, house, etc.). They are not easy to attract and the best way to instruct them is to do it internally (official training or coworkers). Then there are those that don’t care about their craft. Those are of no interest to me.

When I took a beer with Greg Young, he talked about action on what would be needed to improve the level. That is the reason why I started (or at least… still trying) to start the ALT.NET Montreal Community. We started a month a ago. We were only 7 back then. It was small but friendly. Now, on June 25th, we will hold our second Coding Dojo of the ALT.NET Montreal Community.

What is important to remember when starting a community I think is, to start! So, if there is anyone from Montreal who wants to help us boot start a community… the ALT.NET Montreal Community, you are all welcome to our next Coding Dojo on June 25th.